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Pharmacy Assistant

The Pharmacy Assistant diploma program at CDI College offers job-ready training in the office, clerical, and medical skills to provide the essential support required by pharmacists.

BC Pharmacy Assistant Program

In the program, you'll learn about pharmacology, pharmaceutical calculations, medical terminology, communications, pharmacy industry software and computer programs, inventory, billing and administration, as well as customer service skills. 

After completing your courses - which includes training in first aid, CPR-C and WHMIS - you'll embark on a three-week practicum placement to gain work experience.

Upon graduation, you'll receive a Pharmacy Assistant diploma and be prepared to start working as a key support to pharmacists and others in the pharmacy field.

Admission Requirements

  • Criminal record check (in accordance with the Criminal Records Review Act)
  • High school graduation or equivalent*

OR

  • Mature student status**

 

*From an English-language teaching institution.
**19 years of age upon starting classes and Pass the college's admissions test.

This program has been approved by the registrar of the Private Training Institutions Branch (PTIB) of the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training.

Program Courses

SSS4 - Student Success Strategies
This course will introduce students to skills and concepts that will help them achieve personal, academic, and career success.
ITC4 - Introduction to Computers
This course is a broad-based introduction to using a personal computer. It teaches the fundamentals of an operating system and the most popular application software including word processing, spreadsheets, and presentations. You will also learn about the Internet, Web browsers, electronic mail and antivirus software. The course is based on the Windows 7 operating system, Microsoft office 2013 and a variety of popular software programs for the Internet-related and security-related applications
MAA101 - Medical Language I: Foundations
Medicine, like other professions, has its own language. Students will learn to work with the specialized terminology of medicine, including the pronunciation and spelling of terms to describe medical circumstances and situations. Students will learn through descriptions, illustrations and exercises to identify the major anatomical features and systems of the body and the common pathologies, which can adversely affect these systems.
MAA110 - Health Care Communication & Interpersonal Skills
This course is specially designed for the new healthcare professional. In any business or interpersonal contact, an impression of a person forms in the first 10 to 15 seconds, so it is crucial to the success of that relationship. The importance of the ‘customer’ and of customer relations, to business success is examined in this course, including through case studies and role playing. Students learn relevant techniques in human behaviour and how they may be applied to improve customer (patient) relations in the medical office. Learning basic communication skills, especially related to the medical field, will assist the student in dealing with all kinds of patients. Understanding cultural differences and appreciating diversity will add another dimension in how to deal with patients and provide safer healthcare delivery in the medical office.
MEC4 - Medical Emergency – First Aid Procedures
This course provides students with the knowledge and skills that are required to recognize and prevent medical and dental emergencies within a medical/dental office. It will prepare students to assist the physician/dentist in administering immediate care for the client in the medical office environment. Students also participate in CPR and First Aid training. Lectures, reading assignments, and laboratory projects will provide a basic understanding of medical emergencies and the role of the office assistant in assisting with the administration of care used in the office. This information permits the student to interpret and relay information and to communicate to the health care team and emergency workers. Note: This one-week course may extend beyond 20 hours due to First Aid and WHMIS training on specific days, which may be being full-day hours.
MAA102 - Medical Language II: Body Systems
This second course of three parts on medical language focuses on the various body systems. Subjects include: the digestive system; additional suffixes and digestive system terminology; urinary system; male and female reproductive systems; nervous system; cardiovascular system; respiratory system; blood system; lymphatic and immune systems; musculoskeletal system; skin; sense organs; and endocrine system.
PHA101 - Introduction to Pharmacy
Introduction to Pharmacy is designed to provide the student with an understanding of the pharmacy profession. This subject will introduce the student to the important role that they will play as a Pharmacy Assistant. The student will review pharmacy history to see how pharmacies in general and their role as an assistant have changed throughout the centuries. The profession of pharmacy as it is today will be examined from the context of the role of the pharmacy personnel, the structure of the various types of pharmacies that are in our society, and the laws, regulations and record keeping requirements governing the practice of pharmacy in the province.
PHA102 - Fundamentals of Pharmacology
In this course, students learn various mechanisms of drug action and will gain an understanding of pharmacokinetic processes that affect drug/body interaction, the procedure for administration of pharmacologic agents, and will be able to identify major drugs by drug class. Students will learn about drug indications, therapeutic uses, side effects, administration routes, and common dosages. Students will be exposed to the work and language of the Pharmacy Assistant and the context in which the Assistant’s work is performed. Current pharmaceutical care delivery systems and drug distribution systems are introduced.
PHA103 - Pharmaceutical Calculations
This course is designed to provide students with the mathematical skills needed in the preparation of parenteral products as well as community and hospital compounding. This course will allow the students to become familiar with the multiple ways of expressing strengths, systems of weights, and measurements currently used in pharmacy practice.
PHA104O - Community Pharmacy
This course introduces students to computerized and manual dispensing procedures, community pharmacy business practices: dispensary and storefront inventory maintenance, insurance plan processing, patient profiles and filing, billing and claim reconciliation, and the roll of the pharmacy assistant with respect to the pharmacy technician and pharmacist. Pharmacy equipment and dispensing techniques will be demonstrated, explained, and practiced in the lab.
PHA105O - Compounding
This course introduces students to pharmaceutical preparation and documentation. Students will learn how to perform a variety of commercial compounding and mixing techniques. The student will become proficient at accurate ingredient measuring and weighing as well as equipment cleansing and maintenance.
PHA106 - Pharmacy Software Fundamentals
Pharmacy software applications are necessary in both the retail and institutional setting. The students are required to efficiently use the KROLL pharmacy software in all aspects of the daily processes that take place in a pharmacy. The more knowledgeable the student is with respect to the detail involved in entering and processing prescriptions, the more valuable they will be to the employer. Many pharmacies are actively using the KROLL pharmacy software. It is a user-friendly program with a variety of options that help deliver optimal care to the patient.
PHA107 - Microbiology and Sterile Products
This course is designed to provide students with a chance to learn the basic principles of microbiology and the reasons why reducing microbial contamination in a pharmacy are necessary. Students will learn how to control microbial contamination by using both chemical and physical means. Students will learn basic principles of infection control. Students will also learn aseptic techniques in preparation of pharmaceutical products. Students will be introduced to basic microbes such as bacteria (pathogenic and non-pathogenic), viruses and fungus and the diseases they cause. You will be introduced to the terminology used in microbiology and how it applies to pharmacy. You will learn how to control microbial contamination in the pharmacy environment and apply these techniques and standards to the preparation of intravenous admixtures and parenteral compounding. Students will become familiar with the different equipment used in parenteral compounding such as vials, ampoules and needles. Students will learn how to manipulate these products and using the proper technique.
CES4 - Career and Employment Strategies
In addition to learning career-oriented skills, students at CDI College also learn how to prepare themselves for successfully acquiring a job in their chosen profession. This course will assist students in planning, preparation, and job search execution. Students will prepare personal marketing collateral and will practice a variety of interviewing techniques.
PHA199 - Practicum
The program provides students with the opportunity to be introduced to, and practice in, a work place setting, enabling them to gain invaluable real-world experience. Students will be required to actively participate in finding a placement location. Once placed, successful completion of the placement is a graduation requirement.

Hear More About Hands-on Training!

CDI College is the right place to get training for your new career working in pharmacies. Apply today! 

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