Location: Ottawa, ON
Salary: $23 an hour
Job type: Full Time , pertime
Shift/Hours: Morning, night, overnight
At MediSystem Pharmacy, you can use your skills to do meaningful work that has a real impact, in an environment that promotes learning, growth and opportunity. Whether it’s your first job or you’re ready for a new challenge, MediSystem Pharmacy can turn your potential into performance that is recognized and rewarded. We offer competitive pay, full benefits, and a work-life balance.
Why this role is important?
MediSystem is a division of Shoppers Drug Mart and is a specialized pharmacy servicing seniors in long term care and retirement homes throughout Ontario for over 24 years. We currently service over 40,000 seniors across Canada. MediSystem is part of the Shoppers Drug Mart network of over 1,400 stores.
The decision to join a company is a big one. We have opportunities for hard working, energetic and reliable people just like you!
What you will need to succeed as a Pharmacy Assistant:
- No experience required in Pharmacy
- Positive attitude, strong work ethic, and willingness to learn
- Excellent oral and written communication and teamwork skills
- Attention to detail
- Ability to maneuver quickly and consistently for an extended period of time
- To be adaptable – You may work in different departments to support workflow
- Ability to problem solve and make decisions
As a Pharmacy assistant you will learn the below functions and may support in other areas, as required.
Generate automation reports via Kroll pharmacy management software
Package medications into unit dose pouches using the automation machine
Perform machine maintenance and troubleshooting
Manage automation workflow to meet workflow targets and schedules
Maintain inventory at pharmacy to pre-specified minimum stock levels.
Place orders for and maintain stock levels of pharmacy supplies or specialty items when needed
Perform inventory pre-count preparation and assist inventory count vendors on inventory count days
Action drug recalls and help obtain alternatives when products are unavailable
Follow a step by step workflow process to prepare packages for shipment
Working with a team, you will use an automated process to package orders for nursing homes and have them ready for delivery
Investigate and trouble shoot orders to have them shipped on time
Follow a step by step workflow process to prepare medication orders for patients
Label medication and over the counter products, prepare medication blister packs, and mixtures
Use Kroll software in preparing and labeling prescriptions
To help you stand out, any or all the following are preferred
High school diploma
Kroll software experience
Pharmacy experience with Long Term Care
Shoppers Drug Mart Inc. recognizes Canada’s diversity as a source of national pride and strength. We have made it a priority to reflect our nation’s evolving diversity in the products we sell, the people we hire, and the culture we create in our organization. Accommodation is available upon request for applicants with disabilities in the recruitment and assessment process and when hired.
In addition, we believe that compliance with laws is about doing the right thing. Upholding the law is part of our Code of Conduct – it reinforces what our customers and stakeholders expect of us.
Please Note: If you have Employee Self Service (ESS) on Workday, apply to this job via the Workday application.
What skills and qualities are important for a Pharmacy Assistant
For a pharmacy assistant position, several skills and qualities are important to perform the job effectively. Here are some of them:
- Knowledge of pharmaceuticals: Having a basic understanding of pharmaceuticals, including common medications, dosage forms, and drug classifications, is crucial. This knowledge allows you to assist with tasks such as medication dispensing, inventory management, and customer inquiries.
- Attention to detail: Pharmacy assistants need to pay close attention to detail to ensure accuracy in tasks like labeling medications, counting pills, and maintaining inventory records. Mistakes in these areas can have serious consequences, so being meticulous is essential.
- Organizational skills: A pharmacy assistant is responsible for managing and maintaining inventory, restocking shelves, and organizing medications and supplies. Strong organizational skills help ensure that products are properly stored, expired medications are removed, and inventory levels are monitored.
- Customer service: Pharmacy assistants often interact with customers, including patients, healthcare professionals, and insurance representatives. Good customer service skills, such as being friendly, approachable, and attentive to customer needs, are important in providing a positive experience and building customer loyalty.
- Communication skills: Effective communication is crucial in a pharmacy setting. Pharmacy assistants need to communicate clearly and professionally with customers, colleagues, and healthcare professionals. This includes listening attentively, asking relevant questions, and conveying information accurately.
- Multitasking and time management: Pharmacy assistants often have multiple responsibilities and tasks to handle simultaneously. Being able to prioritize, manage time effectively, and handle interruptions while maintaining accuracy is important for a smooth workflow.
- Knowledge of pharmacy software and technology: Pharmacy assistants may need to work with computer systems and pharmacy software for tasks such as inventory management, medication labeling, and data entry. Familiarity with pharmacy-specific software and basic computer skills are valuable.
- Ethics and confidentiality: Pharmacy assistants handle sensitive patient information and must adhere to strict ethical and legal standards. Respecting patient privacy, maintaining confidentiality, and following professional guidelines and regulations are critical aspects of the job.
- Adaptability and willingness to learn: The pharmacy industry is constantly evolving, with new medications, regulations, and technologies emerging. Being adaptable and open to learning new skills and procedures is important to stay up-to-date and provide quality service.
- Professionalism and teamwork: Pharmacy assistants work as part of a team with pharmacists, other pharmacy staff, and healthcare professionals. Demonstrating professionalism, collaborating effectively, and being a reliable and supportive team member contribute to a positive work environment.
While formal education is not always a requirement for a pharmacy assistant position, completing a pharmacy assistant program or having a relevant certification can enhance your knowledge and increase your job prospects. However, specific requirements may vary depending on the employer and the region.
What education and certification are required to become a Pharmacy Assistant
The educational requirements and certifications for becoming a pharmacy assistant can vary depending on the employer and the region. In some cases, a high school diploma or equivalent may be sufficient for entry-level positions as a pharmacy assistant. However, having additional education or certification can enhance your qualifications and make you more competitive in the job market. Here are some relevant options:
- Pharmacy Assistant Certificate/Diploma: Many vocational schools, community colleges, and career institutes offer pharmacy assistant certificate or diploma programs. These programs typically provide training in areas such as pharmacy operations, medical terminology, pharmaceutical calculations, dispensing medications, inventory management, and customer service skills. Completing a pharmacy assistant program can provide you with a solid foundation of knowledge and skills specific to the field.
- On-the-Job Training: Some employers may offer on-the-job training programs for pharmacy assistants. This training typically includes learning about pharmacy procedures, medication dispensing, inventory management, and customer service. While on-the-job training does not typically result in a formal certification, it can provide valuable hands-on experience in a pharmacy setting.
- Pharmacy Technician Certification: While not always required, obtaining certification as a pharmacy technician can enhance your credentials as a pharmacy assistant. Certification programs, such as the Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT) certification offered by the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB), require passing an exam that tests your knowledge and skills related to pharmacy operations, medication dispensing, and regulations. While the pharmacy technician role encompasses broader responsibilities than a pharmacy assistant, the certification can demonstrate your competence in pharmacy-related tasks.
It’s important to note that the specific educational and certification requirements can vary depending on the employer, region, and regulations in place. Some jurisdictions may have specific requirements for pharmacy assistants, such as registration with a regulatory body or completion of certain courses. It’s recommended to research the requirements of the region you’re interested in working in to ensure compliance with local regulations and to increase your employability.
Additionally, ongoing professional development and staying informed about the latest developments in pharmacy practices can help you enhance your knowledge and skills as a pharmacy assistant.
What is the work environment like for Pharmacy Assistant
The work environment for a pharmacy assistant can vary depending on the type of pharmacy and its size. Here are some general characteristics of the work environment for a pharmacy assistant:
- Pharmacy Setting: Pharmacy assistants typically work in various healthcare settings, such as retail pharmacies, hospital pharmacies, mail-order pharmacies, or long-term care facilities. Each setting may have its own unique work environment and workflow.
- Customer Interaction: Pharmacy assistants frequently interact with customers, including patients, healthcare professionals, and insurance representatives. They provide customer service by answering inquiries, assisting with prescription orders, and providing medication information. Good communication and interpersonal skills are important in these interactions.
- Teamwork: Pharmacy assistants work as part of a healthcare team, collaborating with pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, and other pharmacy staff. They contribute to the overall functioning of the pharmacy by assisting with tasks such as medication dispensing, inventory management, and administrative duties. Effective teamwork and communication are essential for a smooth workflow.
- Fast-Paced and Time-Sensitive: The pharmacy environment can be fast-paced and time-sensitive, especially in retail pharmacies. Pharmacy assistants need to handle multiple tasks simultaneously, such as processing prescriptions, managing inventory, and assisting customers. Efficient time management and the ability to prioritize tasks are important to meet deadlines and ensure accuracy.
- Confidentiality and Ethics: Pharmacy assistants handle sensitive patient information and must adhere to strict confidentiality and ethical standards. Respecting patient privacy, maintaining the confidentiality of medical records, and following legal and professional guidelines are critical aspects of the job.
- Attention to Detail: Accuracy is paramount in pharmacy operations. Pharmacy assistants need to pay close attention to detail when preparing prescriptions, labeling medications, and maintaining records. Mistakes can have serious consequences, so being meticulous is crucial.
- Organizational Skills: Pharmacy assistants are responsible for managing and maintaining inventory, restocking shelves, and organizing medications and supplies. Strong organizational skills help ensure that products are properly stored, expired medications are removed, and inventory levels are monitored.
- Technology and Software: Pharmacy assistants often work with computer systems and pharmacy software for tasks such as prescription processing, inventory management, and data entry. Familiarity with pharmacy-specific software and basic computer skills are important in the role.
- Standing and Mobility: Pharmacy assistants typically spend a significant portion of their workday on their feet, moving around the pharmacy to perform various tasks. Physical stamina and the ability to work comfortably in a standing position are necessary.
- Professionalism: Maintaining a professional demeanor and appearance is important in the pharmacy setting. Pharmacy assistants should demonstrate professionalism, respect, and empathy towards customers and colleagues.
It’s important to note that the work environment can vary depending on the specific pharmacy and its policies. Each pharmacy may have its own unique procedures, workflow, and expectations.