Pharmacy Technician Kaihangarau Rongoā

Pharmacy technicians help pharmacists to prepare and give out medicines.

Pharmacy technicians may do some or all of the following:

  • receive prescriptions
  • prepare and mix medicines under the supervision of pharmacists
  • pack and label medicines
  • issue, deliver and keep records of completed prescriptions
  • maintain stock levels
  • help in the day-to-day running of the pharmacy
  • organise and repack bulk supplies into smaller containers for hospital wards and departments
  • deliver medicines to hospital wards.

To become a specialist technician you need to be working as a pharmacist technician and complete a New Zealand Certificate in Pharmacy – Specialist Technician (Level 6) through Manukau Institute of Technology.

Physical Requirements

Pharmacy technicians need to have good eyesight (with or without corrective lenses).

Useful Experience

Useful experience for pharmacy technicians includes working as a pharmacy assistant, or other health or laboratory work.

Personal Qualities

Pharmacy technicians need to be:

  • good communicators, friendly, patient and helpful 
  • organised, responsible and careful
  • able to work within a professional code of ethics and keep information private
  • accurate and observant, with an eye for detail
  • good at maths.

Skills

Pharmacy technicians need to have knowledge of:

  • medicines and the laws controlling their distribution
  • hazardous substances and how to handle them
  • first aid
  • the human body and how it is affected by different medicines.

Conditions

Pharmacy technicians:

  • usually work regular business hours
  • work in pharmacies/chemists and hospitals.

Subject Recommendations

NCEA Level 2 is required to enter tertiary training. Useful subjects include English and maths.

Pharmacy Technicians can earn around $46K-$70K per year.

Pay for pharmacy technicians varies depending on experience.

  • Pharmacy technician trainees usually earn between minimum wage and $46,000 a year.
  • Qualified pharmacy technicians usually earn between $46,000 and $60,000.
  • Pharmacy technicians who take on additional responsibilities can earn up to $70,000.

Sources: Auckland Region DHBs/PSA, 'Allied, Public Health and Technical Multi-employer Collective Agreement, expires 31 October 2022'; APEX and Nelson Marlborough DHB, Hawkes Bay DHB, 'Pharmacy Collective Employment Agreement, 1 November 2020 to 31 January 2022'; Canterbury DHB and APEX 'Pharmacy Collective Agreement, 1 September 2018 - 31 August 2021'. 

Pharmacy technicians may progress to senior positions with further training.

Pharmacy technicians can specialise as a:

Specialist technician
Specialist technicians check that pharmacies comply with legislation, train technicians, manufacture medications, manage dispensaries and do industrial research.

Years Of Training

2 years of training required.

To become a pharmacy technician and do basic dispensary work only you need to have a New Zealand Certificate in Pharmacy – Pharmacy Technician (Level 4).

You also need to hold a current first aid certificate.

To become a fully qualified pharmacy technician you need to have a New Zealand Certificate in Pharmacy – Pharmacy Technician (Level 5).

Pharmacy Technician