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Health Science | Pharmacy Technician

Kaduceus, PassAssured, or PharmaSeer: What's the Best Pharmacy Technician Curriculum?

December 3rd, 2021 | 9 min. read

Brad Hummel

Brad Hummel

Coming from a family of educators, Brad knows both the joys and challenges of teaching well. Through teaching experience of his own, he’s experienced both firsthand. As a writer for AES, Brad’s goal is to help teachers empower their students through listening to educators’ concerns and creating content that answers their most pressing questions about career and technical education.

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Are you a CTE health science instructor looking to expand your program to include pharmacy technician as an option for students? If so, you need to find the right pharmacy technician certification and curriculum that best fits your needs.

At events such as the 2021 THOA conference, we often hear from teachers like you who are eager to find the right pharmacy technician resources for their students. 

Since there are so many options to pick from, choosing the best one for your classroom can feel overwhelming. You don’t want to pick the wrong curriculum and see your pharm tech program flop.

Three of the most common pharmacy technician resources teachers tell us they use are Kaduceus, PassAssured, and PharmaSeer.

In this review, you’ll learn more about the differences between these three popular instructional resources. For each resource, we’ll cover:

  • Topics within the Pharmacy Technician Curriculum
  • The Cost
  • Certification Details

After finishing the review, you should recognize the differences between these three pharmacy technician options to determine if one is right for your program.


Kaduceus Pharmacy Technician Program

kaduceus-logoKaduceus is a noted publisher of curriculum for career preparation in the health science CTE pathway. Kaduceus offers several programs for health careers, including Certified Nursing Assistant, Veterinary Assistant, and Phlebotomy Technician.

The Kaduceus Pharmacy Technician Program is a 36-week course of study designed to prepare students for a position in pharmacy or a related field. The program includes 180 hours of course content ranging from laboratory work and simulations to lectures and group discussions.

What Topics Does the Kaduceus Pharmacy Technician Program Cover?

Over the length of the program, Kaduceus covers 10 pharmacy technician topics:

  1. Pharmacy Law and Ethics
  2. Sterile Products
  3. Retail and Institutional Pharmacies
  4. Pharmacology and Body Systems
  5. Chemotherapy
  6. TPN Preparation
  7. Nutritional and Alternative Substances
  8. Pharmacy Billing
  9. Dosage Calculations
  10. Career Development

How Much Does Kaduceus Cost?

Kaduceus doesn’t provide pricing information on its website for any of its programs. If you’re interested in determining how much the Kaduceus Pharmacy Technician program would cost for your school, you’ll need to contact their sales department directly for a quote.

How Does Kaduceus Prepare Students for Certification?

Kaduceus ensures all teachers receive the National Sterile Products IV (Intravenous) Certification as part of the pharmacy technician program. Students taking the program are also trained in Sterile Products (IV) during the course and can sit for the National Sterile Products (IV) Certification once they finish.

Students who complete this program and graduate from high school will be eligible to take the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam (PTCE). The PTCE is offered by the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) and leads to certification as a PTCB Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT).


PassAssured Pharmacy Technician Training Program (PTTP)

passassured-logo

PassAssured is a recognized provider of a program that prepares learners to become pharmacy technicians. PassAssured’s Pharmacy Technician Training Program (PTTP) offers a complete curriculum option designed particularly for students seeking certification in this in-demand health career.

What Pharmacy Technician Topics Does PassAssured Cover?

The PassAssured PTTP includes a robust 240 hours of curriculum designed for high school seniors and up. This means that health science teachers can use it in their curriculum, but it’s also available to adults looking to add or renew a certification as a pharmacy technician later in their careers.

Through the PTTP, PassAssured teaches the following content sections:

  1. Orientation
    1. Introduction to PassAssured
    2. Certifications, Licensure, and Registration
    3. Exams and Re-Certification
  2. Federal Law
    1. Pharmacy Law and Time
    2. Federal Law and Drugs
    3. Rules of Controlled Substances
    4. DEA Number Verification
    5. Schedule II Drugs
  3. Medical Review
    1. Doses and Terminology
    2. Central Nervous System
    3. Peripheral Nervous System
    4. Hormones
    5. Cardiovascular Drugs
    6. Renal Drugs
    7. Anti-Infectant Drugs
    8. Cancer Chemo
    9. Blood and Blood Formation
    10. Vitamins
  4. Aseptic Technique
    1. Definitions
    2. Syringes
    3. Parenteral
    4. Techniques for Sterile Compounding
    5. Solutions
    6. Parenteral Antineoplastic Agents
    7. USP 797
  5. Calculations
    1. Metric System
    2. Abbreviations
    3. Roman Numerals
    4. Fractions, Decimals, and Percent
    5. Temperature Conversions
    6. Ratios and Proportions
    7. Quantities, Dilutions, and Concentrations
    8. Doses and Dose Regimens
    9. Calculations of IV Flow Rates
    10. Powder Volume
    11. Pricing
  6. Pharmacy Operations
    1. Basic Facts in Pharmacy
    2. Assisting the Pharmacist
    3. General Prescriptions
    4. Medical Distribution Inventory
    5. Third-Party Reimbursement
    6. Medication Safety
    7. Cash Register
  7. Addendums
    1. HIPPA Regulations
    2. Effective Communication for Pharmacy Technicians
    3. Basic Anatomy

Within each of these areas, PassAssured offers detailed information students will need to work as pharmacy technicians.

How Much Does PassAssured Cost?

PassAssured’s pricing for the PTTP is straightforward. The PTTP is priced per student, so access to the course starts at $299 for a single student. PassAssured offers CTE programs a discount for enrolling at least 50 students.

The breakdown of PassAssured’s pricing at the time of publication is as follows:

Number of Students

Cost Per Student

1-49

$299

50-74

$260

75-99

$220

100+

$200

Because of PassAssured’s tiered pricing, larger health science CTE programs can take advantage of a substantial discount for enrolling many learners in pharm tech.

How Does PassAssured Prepare Students for Certification?

PassAssured works in coordination with the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) to ensure the program is fully compliant with the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam (PTCE). The PTCB is accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA).

Because the PTCB recognizes the PassAssured Pharmacy Technician Training Program, students can sit for the PTCE as soon as they finish the course. Schools and students can pay for the PTCE together with the PassAssured program in a bundle starting at $428.


PharmaSeer from the National Healthcareer Association (NHA)

01-nha-logo

The National Healthcareer Association (NHA) is one of the largest providers of health science certifications in the United States. NHA materials prepare students and career professionals for certification assessments in various health science areas.

PharmaSeer is NHA’s digital learning solution intended to be used as a supplement to on-job pharmacy technician training or as part of a CTE health science program. Because it’s intended for a broad range of ages, you can use PharmaSeer with high schoolers and current pharmacy employees alike.

NHA also offers PharmaSeer Math as a separate service to help students understand calculations specific to pharmacy settings.

What Topics Does NHA PharmaSeer Cover?

PharmaSeer is a comprehensive program created to work alongside current training and education programs to give students the information they need to succeed as pharmacy technicians. Content in PharmaSeer is designed to satisfy standards for an entry-level CPhT position as set by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) and the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE).

PharmaSeer features 140 lessons across these 20 self-paced modules:

  1. Introduction and Basic Overview
  2. Prescription Medications - General
  3. Prescription Medications – Controlled Substances
  4. The Dispensing Process
  5. Pharmacy Calculations
  6. Self-Management Skills and Interpersonal Skills
  7. Patient Interaction
  8. An Overview of Federal Privacy Requirements
  9. Basic Anatomy and Physiology
  10. Basic Pharmacology
  11. Commonly Prescribed Interventions
  12. Infection Control and Wellness Promotion
  13. Over-The-Counter Medications
  14. Managed Care Prescriptions
  15. Non-Dispensing Duties
  16. Drug and Medical Terminology
  17. Unit Dose Systems and Drug Repackaging
  18. Non-Sterile Product Compounding
  19. Sterile Product Compounding
  20. Emergency Situations

Within these topics, PharmaSeer includes 1,400 assessment questions, 130 practice problems, and 700 self-evaluation exercises to help students prepare.

Teachers and students also have the option of purchasing PharmaSeer Math, an additional resource that helps present emerging pharmacy technicians with critical math calculations.

PharmaSeer Math includes additional five learning modules:

  1. Introduction and Measurement Basics
  2. Dispensing Calculations and Business Math
  3. Single-Dose Calculations
  4. Sterile and Non-Sterile Compounding Calculations
  5. Calculations for Special Circumstances

When used together, PharmaSeer and PharmaSeer Math include 25 self-guided content modules to ensure students are ready for certification.

How Much Does NHA PharmaSeer Cost?

NHA prices PharmaSeer individually per student. Learners and programs have the option of purchasing PharmaSeer or PharmaSeer Math separately or buying both products in a bundle for a discounted price.

Individually, PharmaSeer costs $289, and PharmaSeer Math costs $125 per student. You can purchase both curriculum resources in a bundle for $349. NHA is a certification provider and also provides exam review and practice products at an additional price.

How Does NHA PharmaSeer Prepare Students for Certification?

NHA is different from other providers of pharmacy technician curriculum in that they are also a certification provider. This means that PharmaSeer and PharmaSeer Math prepare learners for NHA’s own pharmacy technician certification assessment, the ExCPT. Students who pass the ExCPT will receive the Certified Pharmacist Technician (CPhT) credential.

Since the NHA CPhT certification exam is different from the PTCB assessment, students must verify if this particular credential is accepted where they are seeking employment. The ExCPT exam includes one hundred questions across four domains.

For more information about this particular certification test, see What Is the NHA CPhT exam and How Do You Prep Students for It?

Which Pharmacy Technician Resource is Right for You?

pharmacy-technician-curriculum-options

Kaduceus, PassAssured, and PharmaSeer are all excellent resources for preparing students to become certified as pharmacy technicians. Each program contains a comprehensive curriculum to help your students gather the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed in their chosen career path.

Which program is suitable for you and your students depends on your course standards, what certifications are accepted in your state, and if your local healthcare providers prefer a particular credential over another.

If you are preparing students for the PTCE certification in a state where it is accepted, Kaduceus can help ensure your students are ready.

If you are looking for a standalone program from a provider whose sole focus is pharmacy technician certification, PassAssured may be the right choice.

If you are interested in a program from a certification provider, or already have an existing relationship with NHA, PharmaSeer might be best for you.

In addition to one of these programs, some teachers may want to use a textbook in their pharmacy technician classes. There are a number of excellent pharmacy technician textbooks available that provide comprehensive coverage of the knowledge and skills students need to succeed.

Interested in using a textbook in your classes? Click below to learn more:

Read Reviews of Popular Pharmacy Technician Textbooks >