University responds to healthcare worker shortage
(OKLAHOMA CITY, OKLA. – December 7, 2007) – The Oklahoma State University A&M Board
of Regents gave OSU-Oklahoma City the green light to initiate a new certified pharmacy
The pharmacy tech certificate program would prepare students to work as a Certified Pharmacy Technician or CPhT. Upon graduation students could take the National Pharmacy Technician Certification Examination through the Pharmacy Certification Board.
Proposal of the new program is part of OSU-OKC’s increasing emphasis on healthcare study programs in response to the chronic shortage of qualified workers in the healthcare industry in the Oklahoma City Metro.
The U.S. Department of Labor estimates that the number of pharmacy technician jobs will grow by 27% in the next seven years. “This field will become an increasingly important area of healthcare as our state’s population ages,” said Dr. Larry Edwards, OSU-OKC’s vice president of Academic Affairs. “Increased use of medications by this aging population will mean expanded job opportunities for skilled, dedicated pharmacy technicians. We’re prepared to facilitate that training.”
Certified technicians work in venues such as retail pharmacies, nursing homes and hospitals. Technicians may also establish and maintain patient profiles and other records, prepare insurance claim forms, and stock and inventory prescription and over-the counter medications.
Currently there are no other credit programs in the Oklahoma City metropolitan area’s public colleges or universities that educate pharmacy technicians. The new program will fall under OSU-OKC’s Science and Engineering Division, directed by Dr. Jerry Nielson. The university plans to add one full-time faculty to develop and teach in this program as well as serve as the program director.
The A&M Board met on the campus of OSU-OKC Friday. The pharmacy tech program approval was one of several items on the agenda.
Oklahoma State University-Oklahoma City is a North Central Association accredited, state-assisted public college serving the technical education and training needs of Oklahoma. For more information go to www.osuokc.edu.