Highest paid pharmacy tech

Highest paid pharmacy tech DEFAULT

Pharmacy Technician Salary

pharmacy technician salary

Pharmacy technicians work in a variety of pharmacies, including retail, hospital, mail order, and long term care facilities. Job duties will vary across the different pharmacy settings. Pharmacy technician pay will also vary, depending on experience, education, and pharmacy. Depending on where you work, pharmacy technician pay may increase, as pharmacy technician hourly pay is more in a hospital than in a retail pharmacy.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the pharmacy technician median pay for 2018 was $32,700per year or $15.72 per hour. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $22,740 per year or $10.93 per hour, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $48,010 per year or $23.08 per hour. The pharmacy technician job outlook, from 2016-2026, is growing faster than average, with an anticipated 12% increase in the coming years. There are approximately 420,000 pharmacy technicians employed in the United States. Right now is a great opportunity to become a pharmacy technician and enter the fast growing market.

pharmacy technician job outlook

Below are the median annual wages for pharmacy technicians in the top industries in which they work.

Hospitals; state, local, and private
General merchandise stores
Food and beverage stores
Pharmacies and drug stores

$37,390
$31,450
$30,640
$30,470

There are approximately 420,000 pharmacy technicians employed in the United States and below are the largest employers of pharmacy technicians.

Pharmacies and drug stores
Hospitals; state, local, and private
General merchandise stores
Food and beverage stores

pharmacy technician interview

A full-time pharmacy technician will typically be offered a competitive benefits package, including health insurance, vacation, sick leave, paid holidays, and company matching 401k retirement plan. The typical pharmacy technician pay rate is expected to grow faster than average for the next several years.

Pharmacy Technician Salary: Hospital vs Retail

The majority of pharmacy technicians work in a retail pharmacy but many pharmacy techs desire to work in a hospital pharmacy. The main reason is due to the higher pharmacy technician hourly pay in a hospital. Hospitals typically offer the highest paid pharmacy technician jobs in the industry. A hospital pharmacy tech will typically earn about a 20% higher salary than a retail pharmacy tech.

hospital pharmacy training

A hospital pharmacy tech will typically earn about a 20% higher salary than a retail pharmacy tech.

Many pharmacy techs will begin their career working in a retail pharmacy where the pharmacy technician salary per hour is significantly less, in order to gain training, experience, or become certified, prior to seeking work in a hospital. Hospital pharmacies will generally require a few years of experience, prior to being hired.

pharmacy technician compounding

In addition to the varying pharmacy technician hourly pay, between hospital and retail settings, the job duties will also vary. As a hospital pharmacy tech, you will not regularly work with patients, process insurance claims, or operate a register. Rather you will spend the majority of your time filling prescriptions. Hospital pharmacies will focus on individual patient doses of medications which are administered to patients, where as retail pharmacies will commonly fill short term antibiotics or pain medications, and maintenance medications for 30 or 90 days supplies.

Retail pharmacy technicians will have a more flexible schedule than hospital pharmacy techs, which is great for someone that is going to college or working around family life. Starting out in a retail pharmacy is a great way to gain training and experience, prior to working in a hospital pharmacy.  

Entry Level Pharmacy Technicians

pharmacy technician training

Many states allow for pharmacy technicians to begin working without any training or prior experience. Typically, pharmacies in these states will only require a high school diploma prior to employment. Pharmacy technicians beginning work without any training or experience will be trained by a pharmacist or lead pharmacy technician. Larger retail chain stores, such as CVS Pharmacy and Walgreens, will offer in-house training for entry level pharmacy technicians. This provides a terrific opportunity to individuals with a high school diploma to enter a fulfilling career as a pharmacy technician.

Entry level pharmacy technician positions allow for individuals to begin working without any training or prior experience, but comes with a reduced pharmacy technician hourly pay. The pharmacy technician pay rate will be reduced for entry level positions. An entry level pharmacy technician, with no training or experience, will typically make between $9 to $11 per hour. These positions are mostly found in retail and privately owned pharmacy settings.

An entry level pharmacy technician, with no training or experience, will typically make between $9 to $11 per hour.

Many pharmacies will provide funding for entry level pharmacy technicians to become nationally certified, after gaining experience and knowledge to pass the pharmacy technician certification exam (PTCE), in order to become a certified pharmacy technician (CPhT). After becoming a CPhT, employers will usually increase the pharmacy technician hourly pay, now that they are certified.   

Certified Pharmacy Technicians

Many employers will offer their pharmacy technicians pay raises for becoming certified and will usually pay for the PTCE. Additionally, you will become more marketable after gaining experience and becoming a CPhT. Most on-the-job training programs will prepare individuals with the necessary knowledge to pass the PTCE and become a CPhT.

pharmacy technician certification

Large retail chain pharmacies will typically offer employer-based pharmacy technician programs and many times these trainings, along with some experience, will prepare a pharmacy technician for the PTCE. However, some large companies which do not have an employer-based training program will provide funding for employees to become a CPhT which can include educational and testing costs.

Certified pharmacy technicians will typically make between $12 to $16 per hour. Certified pharmacy technician hourly pay will depend on experience, education, and type of employer. Hospitals pharmacy technician pay rate is higher than retail pharmacies, however, they usually require individuals to be a CPhT with at least three (3) years of experience.

Certified pharmacy technicians will typically make between $12 to $16 per hour.

pharmacy technician certification

There are two organizations that can provide pharmacy technician certification in order to become a certified pharmacy technician (CPhT); The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board PTCB) and National Healthcareer Association (NHA). The main difference between the certification from PTCB and the NHA is that PTCB certification only requires a high school diploma and a passing score on the exam. There are study guides to assist with preparing for the exam.

Experienced Pharmacy Technicians

pharmacy technician exam cost

A CPhT with at least five (5) years of experience will earn the highest pharmacy technician pay hourly. Experienced pharmacy technicians can work as lead pharmacy technicians and train other entry level techs. Experienced pharmacy technicians will typically make between $18 to $22 per hour. The highest paid pharmacy technician jobs are held by lead pharmacy technicians working in a hospital pharmacy.

Experienced pharmacy technicians will typically make between $18 to $22 per hour.

In addition to the greater pay as a lead pharmacy tech, there will also be more responsibilities. This can include preparing work schedules for other technicians, ordering medications and supplies, and training newly hired pharmacy technicians.

Pharmacy Technician Salary Jobs By Employer

Pharmacy Technician Salary Retail

pharmacy retail

Pharmacy technician pay at CVS, Walgreens, Rite Aid, and other large pharmacy chains is often comparable to one another. The nation is covered with numerous retail pharmacies that offer entry level pharmacy tech job opportunities. The entry level positions may offer reduced pharmacy technician pay but the acquired skills and experience can be transferable to other pharmacy settings, including hospital, mail order, or long-term care facilities. Retail pharmacy technicians often have a more flexible schedule than hospital technicians, and most do not have to work night shifts.

Pharmacy Technician Salary Hospital

hospital pharmacy

Pharmacy technician pay at hospital facilities is often greater than other pharmacy settings. Hospital pharmacy techs will often have a few years of experience in order to compound drugs and prepare IV’s where other pharmacy settings will typically fill prescriptions with pills and liquids. Hospitals often have the best vacation and insurance benefits as well.

Top Paying States for Pharmacy Technicians

StateEmploymentHourly Mean
Wage
Annual Mean
Wage
Alaska570$20.74$43,150
California37,630$20.48$42,610
Washington6,950$20.42$42,470
Oregon5,020$19.67$40,920
District of Columbia840$19.22$39,980

Pharmacy Technician Average Salary by State and Employment Numbers

StateEmploymentAnnual Mean Wage
Alabama7,140$30,040
Alaska570$43,150
Arizona9,310$35,090
Arkansas4,490$29,640
California37,630$42,610
Colorado5,610$36,880
Connecticut4,120$34,530
Delaware1,460$34,470
District of Columbia840$39,980
Florida30,080$32,090
Georgia12,450$30,240
Hawaii1,780$38,720
Idaho1,960$35,920
Illinois21,490$33,140
Indiana9,360$31,160
Iowa4,130$32,560
Kansas3,780$32,940
Kentucky8,470$29,270
Louisiana6,130$32,700
Maine2,180$31,690
Maryland7,660$33,880
Massachusetts8,910$37,110
Michigan15,580$32,660
Minnesota8,370$37,670
Mississippi3,430$31,440
Missouri9,850$32,090
Montana1,140$34,780
Nebraska2,600$33,270
Nevada3,960$37,620
New Hampshire1,730$32,370
New Jersey9,570$33,070
New Mexico2,360$33,710
New York19,320$34,640
North Carolina13,680$30,890
North Dakota830$39,770
Ohio16,190$30,500
Oklahoma4,800$30,790
Oregon5,020$40,920
Pennsylvania18,220$30,000
Rhode Island1,800$37,410
South Carolina7,500$31,530
South Dakota1,350$32,720
Tennessee10,860$32,980
Texas37,200$34,290
Utah4,020$37,190
Vermont660$34,070
Virginia9,690$32,370
Washington6,950$42,470
West Virginia2,980$28,650
Wisconsin8,050$32,750
Wyoming590$37,460
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Best Pharmacy Tech Career Opportunities in the US

 

With four seasons and low housing costs, the American Midwest offers much more than meets the eye.

The Great Lakes Region

Indiana is famous for the Indy 500, Colts, and super affordable living. The state has a nearly 6% growth rate and an average of $31,200 for annual paycheck earners. Jumping across the border to Ohio, job searchers might be disappointed with the lowest average salary in the entire Midwest ($30,500). 

With their super-functional state government, great public schools, and a healthy economy, Minnesota’s allied health industry has become a dominant player. The pharmacy tech sector might be competitive, but with average salaries surpassing $37,670, it’s not hard to see why.

Though it’s consistently listed as one of the happiest states in the union, Minnesota’s wide range of weather shouldn’t be taken lightly. 

Next in line are Illinois, Wisconsin, and Michigan, whose average incomes hover around the $33,000 mark. Considering the lower-than-average costs for healthcare and excellent state resources, Chicago is also a surprisingly affordable city to find housing in. 

Wisconsin has a virtually identical salary and growth rates, and as one of the best areas to live in, Madison is worth checking out. Michigan is the third-cheapest state to live in, and since the auto industry has begun to rebound, local economies have started to flourish.

Great Plains States

Not only does North Dakota have one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country, but it also has the highest income growth (thanks to the oil industry). North Dakotan pharmacy techs are in major demand (11% growth rate) and can rely on an average salary of $39,800 – the best in the entire Midwest.

Nebraska, Kansas, South Dakota, Iowa, and Missouri follow similar trends, with pharmacy techs averaging between $32,000 and just over $33,000. 

Nebraska is in the top 10 states for education development. That said, it is 47th on the equality index. Kansas lacks certain economic growth – owing to their recent, haphazard tax laws – but is still an incredibly affordable state to own a home. South Dakota has an 8% projected growth rate, and residents will appreciate the state’s unspoiled natural beauty (but economic stagnancy is a concern in the coming decades).

Iowa provides some of the lowest median home prices in the US. Pharm techs with children will be happy to learn that SAT and ACT scores are the highest in the region, meaning better-than-average public education. Missouri homeowners enjoy some of the most affordable housing and taxes in the country, but the “Show Me State” has one of the highest crime rates in the country.

Pharmacy Tech Jobs in the West

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When you’re considering pursuing a healthcare career, you’ll certainly weigh one important factor: salary. Pharmacy technicians earn a median $35,100 annually in the U.S., according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

A pharmacy technician salary depends on many variables. By taking steps to advance your career, you can also increase your earning potential and competitiveness for in-demand jobs.

What Factors Can Affect My Salary?

Many factors influence a pharmacy technician’s salary. “Certainly, more education and experience translate to higher pay,” explains Glen Gard, CPhT, CSPT, director of sterile compounding compliance at the infusion services company Option Care Health. Those are just two variables.

As you consider becoming a pharmacy technician, weigh these factors that impact pay:

  • Place of employment
  • Education
  • Certification(s)
  • Type of role
  • Location where you work
  • Years and type of experience

Highest-Paying Metropolitan Areas for Pharmacy Technicians

Some cities and metropolitan areas pay very well. Interestingly, the 10 top-paying locations in the U.S. are all in California, according to the BLS. In fact, the Golden State is the highest paying in the country.

Before you pack your bags to move to one of these high-paying cities, remember that salary isn’t everything. Take-home pay doesn’t stretch as far in more expensive locations. Living expenses can take a big bite out of your salary, so weigh all financial aspects when considering where to work as a pharmacy technician.

Metropolitan areaAverage annual salary
San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, California$56,620
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, California$56,020
Santa Rosa, California$52,810
Stockton-Lodi, California$50,860
Vallejo-Fairfield, California$50,580

Where You Work

“There are so many settings and paths for pharmacy technicians to pursue,” Gard says. Settings vary in the number of pharmacy technicians they employ.

Pharmacies and drug stores account for more than half the employment (51%) of pharmacy technicians, according to the BLS. Hospitals employ 17%, and pharmacies in retail grocery stores employ 9%.

Your place of employment can influence your income, too.

Type of WorkplaceAverage Salary
Outpatient care centers$49,690
Federal government settings$47,690
Colleges, universities, and professional schools$43,990
Medical and diagnostic laboratories$43,960
Local government$43,730
Hospitals$41,180
E-commerce and mail-order settings$38,120
Wholesalers$37,410
Retail: Health and personal care stores$34,420
Retail: Grocery stores$33,000

Roles and the specific pharmacy technician job descriptions within these settings also affect salary. As a general rule, the more specialized the position, the higher the pay, Gard says.

In addition, staff that belong to a union usually earn more.

As you consider a career in this field, you’ll want to know where pharmacy technicians are in highest demand. These states have the biggest market for pharmacy techs, according to the BLS:

  • Texas
  • California
  • Florida
  • Illinois
  • New York

On the other hand, some areas see lower demand for pharmacy technicians. These states have the smallest market for the field:

  • Wyoming
  • Alaska
  • Vermont
  • North Dakota
  • Montana

Your Education

Some people can get started with a pharmacy technician career with nothing more than a high school diploma or GED. That track is becoming less common, though. “There’s a growing expectation in the field that requires some component of additional education,” Gard says.

Training as a pharmacy technician can follow three educational paths: a diploma or certificate, an associate degree, or on-the-job training provided by an employer.

When you consider which route is best for you, know that “more education will increase your salary,” Gard says.

In general, more education means better pay.

Education beyond a high school diploma or GED also makes you more competitive for jobs. It is becoming more common for employers to require postsecondary education or training.

Your Certifications

Certifications are mandatory in some, but not all, states in the U.S. You will need to research what is required where you live.

Certifications will help your career just about everywhere you work, though, explains Gard. “About half of states now require national certification—such as CPhT—and more states are beginning to require it,” he says. “Certification shows you have gone through a training program or on-the-job training, and that you understand the basics needed to be a pharmacy technician.”

Earning a certification does more than expand your options of where you can work; it can also boost your pay.

Options for certifications include:

Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT)

Certified Compounded Sterile Preparation Technician

Advanced Certified Pharmacy Technician

Specialty certifications are designed to show advanced and specialized knowledge within a field. As you gain experience, you might consider these specialty certifications:

Medication History Certificate

Technician Product Verification Certificate

Hazardous Drug Management Certificate

Billing and Reimbursement Certificate

Pharmacy Tech Salaries Compared to Other Allied Health Salaries

If you are researching how to become a pharmacy technician, you likely have a passion for helping people. Many other careers within healthcare fulfill that drive, too.

It is important to know the difference between a pharmacy technician and a pharmacist—often a source of confusion. While they work together closely, these roles are separated by crucial differences.

Pharmacists oversee a pharmacy technician’s work, ensuring orders and dispensed medications are correct. While pharmacy techs often have direct contact with patients (when taking information or payment for prescriptions, for example), pharmacists answer patients’ questions and advise them on how to safely and effectively take medications.

When exploring the many career options ahead of you, you will want to consider what you can earn in each job. Take a look at how pharmacy technicians’ pay compares to the median annual salaries of other healthcare jobs.

How Can I Increase My Pay?

You already know that experience, additional education, and certifications can raise your income as a pharmacy technician. Specializing is one of the best ways to boost your salary, Gard says.

“Specialized roles tend to make more than an average technician,” he adds.

His advice: “As you go through the process of becoming a new pharmacy technician, and as you gain experience, figure out your niche.” You may want to concentrate on becoming a purchaser, a medical reconciliation technician, a patient service representative, or a worker at an accreditation agency.

Job Outlook

The job outlook for pharmacy technicians is strong, Gard says. The BLS foresees job growth of 4% through 2029—about average of all positions within the U.S.

As the population in the U.S. ages, people will likely need more care—including medications, Gard says. Chronic diseases requiring ongoing medications are also becoming more common, leading to an increasing demand for pharmacy technicians.

The bottom line: Pharmacy technicians are, and will continue to be, integral to ensuring patients get the best care they need.

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TOP 10 HIGHEST PAYING PHARMACEUTICAL JOBS - HIGHEST SALARY PHARMA DEPARTMENT

These Are The 10 States With The Highest Pharmacist Technician Salaries For 2017

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Without fail, in surveys across basically every demographic, the number one most important aspect of a job for most people is the salary — how much do pharmacist technicians get paid where I live?

And while there are many things to go into how much you, specifically, can expect to make, there’s really good data for average salaries for pharmacist technicians by state across America broken down by seniority level. So while your city may be slightly different than the state average, these averages give you a rough sense of what to expect for your salary.

To better understand how salaries change across America, we decided to take a look the most recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics on average pay for pharmacist technicians by state.

Additionally, we wanted to adjust the salary based on the cost of living in a state — because your salary goes further in North Carolina than it does in California.

The state with the best salary for pharmacist technicians after this adjustment? That would be Pharmacy Technicians.

Here’s a quick snapshot of the top ten states for salaries:

  1. Washington
  2. North Dakota
  3. Wyoming
  4. Utah
  5. Idaho
  6. Texas
  7. Minnesota
  8. Mississippi
  9. Kansas
  10. Nevada

Let’s take a look at how we got here and a full ranking of all the states.

If you’re interested, you can read more about the job scene here:

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Tell us your goals and we'll match you with the right jobs to get there.

How we determined pay by state

As we mentioned earlier, we took the average annual salary data for pharmacist technicians from the 2016 Bureau of Labor Statistics — specifically their ‘Occupational Employment Statistics.’

To make the comparison of salaries apples to apples across states, we also took into account the cost of living in each state.

We then created an index by dividing the average wage for a state by the cost of living relative to average. As an example, the cost of living index in California is 135.9 and the average pay is $39760, so our index value would be:

$39,760 * (100 / 135.9) = $29,256

We then ranked every state on this criteria with the state with the highest salary index ranking as highest average salary for pharmacist technicians.

Here’s a look at the full ranking for all states.

For more reading, check out:

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Detailed List Of Pharmacist Technician Salaries By State

RankStateAdjusted SalaryAverage WageCost Of Living
1Washington$40,085$42,170105.2
2North Dakota$38,742$38,51099.4
3Wyoming$38,540$35,38091.8
4Utah$37,741$35,10093.0
5Idaho$36,601$33,71092.1
6Texas$36,471$33,08090.7
7Minnesota$35,178$35,460100.8
8Mississippi$34,586$29,71085.9
9Kansas$34,560$31,07089.9
10Nevada$34,365$35,500103.3
11Arizona$34,142$33,46098.0
12Illinois$34,038$32,20094.6
13Tennessee$33,769$30,19089.4
14Montana$33,700$33,970100.8
15Michigan$33,696$29,99089.0
16Arkansas$33,685$29,34087.1
17Colorado$33,545$34,820103.8
18Oklahoma$33,497$29,88089.2
19Indiana$33,363$29,86089.5
20Nebraska$33,187$30,40091.6
21New Mexico$33,067$31,91096.5
22Iowa$33,043$30,07091.0
23Oregon$32,863$37,990115.6
24Missouri$32,544$29,42090.4
25Wisconsin$32,221$31,19096.8
26Louisiana$31,729$30,08094.8
27Georgia$31,717$28,99091.4
28Delaware$31,479$31,920101.4
29North Carolina$31,341$29,43093.9
30Florida$31,159$30,63098.3
31Kentucky$30,806$27,88090.5
32South Carolina$30,635$30,39099.2
33Ohio$30,597$28,70093.8
34Alabama$30,559$27,87091.2
35South Dakota$30,327$31,450103.7
36Alaska$30,205$39,600131.1
37Virginia$29,583$29,820100.8
38California$29,256$39,760135.9
39Pennsylvania$28,934$29,340101.4
40West Virginia$28,918$27,01093.4
41Rhode Island$27,439$33,120120.7
42Maine$27,328$30,280110.8
43Connecticut$26,836$34,270127.7
44New Hampshire$26,547$31,060117.0
45Vermont$26,242$31,780121.1
46New Jersey$26,136$31,860121.9
47Maryland$25,832$32,420125.5
48Massachusetts$25,344$33,810133.4
49New York$24,603$32,230131.0
50Hawaii$21,911$36,790167.9

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PHARMACY TECHNICIAN SALARY

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Pharmacy Technician Salary

Pharmacy technicians have careers that involve patient interaction, pharmaceutical knowledge, and administrative acumen.

They perform tasks that cross over administrative, computer software and customer service lines, and the career field has plenty of opportunities available for those with a certificate or degree and some clinical experience. As such, salaries for pharmacy technicians have potential, just like the career field itself. On top of salary, many techs receive additional employer benefits in terms of future education, healthcare and support in securing professional certifications.

Salary and Outlook

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Occupational Outlook Handbook says the median annual salary for full-time pharmacy techs is $35,100, though the top 10% in the field earned more than $50,430.

ANNUAL AVERAGE SALARY OF

$35,100

Pharmacy Technician

Top 10% generally refers to workers who have a number of years' experience and have earned a degree and professional certification from accredited agencies or associations. Location may also play a factor in higher salaries, with metropolitan areas paying better than small towns or rural areas.

Job Growth

The profession is also holding steady, according to the BLS. The field has an anticipated growth rate of 4% through 2029. When you consider the national average for all occupations' growth is also 4%, you can see there is potential in pursuing a pharmacy technician career and finding work.

The total number of jobs expected to be added nationally is 15,200 for the same time period. This growth rate is attributed to the increasing demand for pharmaceuticals by older populations. Not only do the pharmaceutical companies continue bringing newer drugs to market, but the overall demand is increasing due to the fact that WWII's baby boom generation is nearing or passing retirement age and will be experiencing age-related illnesses that require medication.

Here are the BLS top states and cities for employment of pharmacy technicians, and what their mean annual wage is.

States with the highest annual wage

STATEMEDIAN ANNUAL WAGE
California$47,620
Alaska$46,430
Washington$46,400
District of Columbia$46,240
Oregon$43,410

Highest paying annual wage metro areas for pharmacy technicians

METROPOLITAN AREAMEDIAN ANNUAL WAGE
Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA$56,620
San Francisco, CA$56,020
Santa Rosa, CA$52,810
Stockton, CA$50,860
Vallejo-Fairfield, CA$50,580

Where do Pharmacy Techs Work and Who Pays Best?

Pharmacy technicians work in many different environments. Here is a look at some of the most common:







You've learned all about pharmacy technician work environments, but where do pharmacy techs earn the best salary?

Take a look at median annual wages in the top industries in which pharmacy technicians work:

INDUSTRYMEDIAN ANNUAL WAGE
Hospitals$39,290
Food and Beverage Stores$32,320
Pharmacy or Drug Stores$33,110

What You'll Learn in Pharmacy Technician School

Sometimes pharmacy technicians enter the field with only a high school diploma and then learn the profession on the job. But this is fast becoming old school thinking. More and more, entry-level pharmacy technicians are pursuing specialized education to learn the trade before starting work.

By taking specialized pharmacy science classes they'll learn subjects they'll need to know on the job, such as the following:

Records management

Medication dispensing and calculations

Pharmacy law

Ethics

Medical terminology

Pharmacology

Why Not Get Started Today?

hero-pharmacy-technician-pharmacy-technician-salary

If you think you'd like to pursue a career as a pharmacy tech, talk with pharmacy professionals in your area to see what sort of opportunities are available. In particular, see what education they pursued and what they might recommend in order to enter the field.

Since most states require regulation for their pharmacy technicians, see if your future employer will help pay fees for the certification exam. Whether they contribute or not you should earn the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board national professional credential. Once you've earned this designation, you'll be respected by peers and understood to be serious about your profession and ethical values.

The field for pharmacy technicians continues to widen as the economy creates more and more demand for the role. If you are seeking a new career, or are just starting out, and have an interest in pharmacy science and helping people, you may want to consider getting an education as a pharmacy technician.

With career outlook looking good, the time to get started is now. Browse accredited pharmacy technician programs today and we'll connect you with school who can help put you on your career path.

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Pharmacy Technician Salary in the USA - Jobs and Wages in the United States

The Best/Worst States For Pharmacy Technicians 2021

We used the most recent data to determine the best states for pharmacy technicians to work and live in.

Pharmacy technicians play an important role in pharmacy operations by helping pharmacists prepare and dispense medication to customers and professionals in the healthcare field. Now is a good time to start a career as a pharmacy technician or seek out a new employment opportunity if you’re an experienced pharmacy tech looking for a change of pace.

As a pharmacy tech, you can find both full-time and part-time employment opportunities and have a variety of different work environments to choose from. In addition, you can choose to take different paths to get there. You can become a pharmacy tech with your high school diploma (or equivalent), or by completing a pharmacy technology post-secondary education course.

Like any occupation, where you live will have an impact on your chances of finding a job and how much you get paid. Knowing the best and worst states to become a pharmacy technician can help you decide if this is the right career for you depending on your location, or where you should relocate to if you want to find the best employment opportunities and highest wages.

Overall Stats for Pharmacy Technicians

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data from 2016 shows that there were 402,500 pharmacy technician jobs in the United States that year. The job outlook for pharmacy techs was promising too, with 12% growth expected between 2016 and 2026 - almost twice the 7% average. May 2017 data shows that the mean annual wage for pharmacy technicians is approximately $33,060 or $15.90 hourly.

The highest levels and concentration of employment for pharmacy techs is in health and personal care stores, with 219,070 jobs. 

The annual mean wage for this type of employer is $30,950 (slightly below average). Other industries with high levels of employment for pharmacy technologists are hospitals, general merchandise stores, and food and beverage stores.

The top paying employers for pharmacy technicians are federal, where about 6,350 jobs can be found in the United States and where techs are paid an annual mean wage of $43,730. 

The second highest paying industry is medical and diagnostic laboratories, where only 70 pharmacy techs are employed, and the annual mean wage is $40,520.

States with the Highest Employment of Pharmacy Techs

Best States for Pharmacy Technicians

Source: Wikipedia

The state with the highest employment level for pharmacy technicians is California, with 36,920 individuals employed in 2017.

The annual mean wage for pharmacy techs in California is $40,890 or $19.66 hourly, which is more than the $33,060 average for all states.

Other states that employ many pharmacy technicians are:

One of the biggest reasons that the employment of pharmacy technicians is the highest in these states is because they’re the five states with the highest populations in the US.

States with the Lowest Employment of Pharmacy Techs

Best states for Pharmacy Technicians

WYOMING Photo Credit: Wikipedia

The state with the lowest employment levels for pharmacy technicians is Wyoming, with only 570 individuals employed in 2017.

The annual mean wage for pharmacy techs in Wyoming is $36,860, a few thousand more than the average for all states.

Other states that employ very few pharmacy technicians are:

In contrast with states that have the highest employment of pharmacy technicians, states with the lowest employment of pharmacy techs are those with the lowest populations in the US.

States with the Highest Annual Mean Wage

Best States for Pharmacy Technicians

WASHINGTON Image Credit: Wikipedia

The state with the highest annual mean wage for pharmacy technicians is Washington, where pharmacy technicians make approximately $42,440 annually or $20.41 hourly.

However, compared to California who employs over 36,000 pharmacy technicians, Washington only employs about 7,590 of them.

Other states with the highest annual mean wage for pharmacy technicians are:

  • Washington
  • California
  • Alaska
  • North Dakota
  • Oregon

A high annual mean wage is great, but it’s important to consider the cost of living in each state before evaluating how good the pay will be. Out of these states, the state with the lowest cost of living is North Dakota (but it only falls at 29th lowest cost of living out of 51 states). California may be a high paying state for pharmacy technicians, but it’s also the state with the third-highest cost of living.

States with the Lowest Annual Mean Wage

Best States for Pharmacy Techicians

WEST VIRGINIA Photo Credit: Wikipedia

The state with the lowest annual mean wage for pharmacy technicians is West Virginia, where pharmacy technicians make approximately $27,900 or $13.41 annually.

West Virginia also employs a relatively small amount of pharmacy techs, with 3,060 jobs in this occupation in the state during 2017.

Other states with the lowest annual mean wage for pharmacy technicians are:

As you might have guessed, these states may have the lowest annual mean wage for pharmacy technicians, but they also have a lower cost of living than the states that pay more for this occupation. Out of this list, the state with the lowest cost of living is Oklahoma (3rd out of 51 states) and the state with the highest cost of living is West Virginia (23rd out of 51 states).

There You Have It

With demand for prescription medications rising, now is as good a time as ever to become a pharmacy technician. The states with the highest employment of pharmacy technicians tend to be the ones with the biggest populations, and the states with the highest paid pharmacy techs are also some of the most expensive to live in.

If this information isn’t enough to decide what state you want to live in as a pharmacy tech, another important measure you can look at is the quality of life in each state. North Dakota is the highest-ranked state for quality of life, for example, and although it’s one of the states with the lowest employment of pharmacy technicians it is also one of the states with the highest annual mean wage for the occupation.

Sours: https://www.pharmacytechniciansalary411.com/best-and-worst-states-for-pharmacy-technicians/

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