What is an Accuracy Checking Technician? Everything You Need To Know

4 mins

If you're new to the pharmacy world, you may have come across the role of an accuracy checki...

Hannah Hemsley

By Hannah Hemsley

If you're new to the pharmacy world, you may have come across the role of an accuracy checking technician once or twice. We've put together this post to help you understand what pharmacy accuracy checking technicians are, what they actually do, and how to become one.

To start with, an accuracy checking pharmacy technician is someone who has undertaken an additional technician training course that accredits them to perform accuracy checks of the work of other dispensers. This is to try to spot any potential errors with prescriptions and ensure patients receive the correct medication.

While a pharmacist is still required to carry out a clinical check of any prescriptions to be dispensed, accuracy checking technicians can help streamline the process. They carry out a thorough, final check of the medication, ensuring that the dosage, amount, and medication are indeed correct before it is supplied to the patient. Accuracy checking pharmacy technicians help ensure a higher standard of care for patients, as they provide an extra pair of eyes on all prescriptions that leave the pharmacy, which reduces the chance of patients receiving the wrong medication or incorrect dosage.

What are the Accuracy Checking Technician Roles and Responsibilities?

Some of the accuracy checking technician roles and responsibilities include:

  • Performing a final accuracy check on any medication before it’s given to patients.

  • Bouncing prescriptions back to the pharmacist or dispenser who prepared the prescription if an error is identified.

  • Keeping an eye on the dispensary workload of the pharmacy in co-operation with the responsible pharmacist is necessary to ensure the workload stays at a safe level.

  • Some accuracy checking technicians may assume a more senior role within the pharmacy, supervising the work of pharmacy assistants and more junior pharmacy technicians.

  • In larger pharmacies, accuracy checking pharmacy technicians may be involved in reviewing dispensing incidents and errors to help the pharmacy understand what happened, why the error occurred, and what measures can be put in place to prevent the same error from happening again in the future.

ACT’s will also carry out the regular duties of a pharmacy technician alongside their accuracy technician roles and responsibilities. Find out more about what pharmacy technicians do in our post about how to become a pharmacy technician.

How to Become an Accuracy Checking Technician

To become an accuracy checking technician, pharmacy technicians must undertake an ACT course. In order to be eligible to take the course, a pharmacy technician must meet the following criteria:

  • They need to be registered as a pharmacy technician with the General Pharmaceutical Council.

  • They need to have worked at their current workplace for at least six months as a pharmacy technician.

  • They must be able to demonstrate their ability to accurately dispense medication in their current workplace (references confirming this will be expected).

  • They will need to identify a facilitator at their current workplace. A facilitator is a selected individual who can be either a pharmacist or an accuracy checking pharmacy technician with more than three years’ experience. The facilitator must be able to offer support, guidance, and feedback for the duration of the course.

Pharmacy accuracy checking technician courses typically take around three to nine months and cover things like common dispensing and medication errors and how to spot and monitor for them, the psychology of errors (why errors usually happen), how to carry out thorough dispensing checks, and a refresher of pharmaceutical calculations. The course will often feature an accuracy checking technician exam and an assessment of 3 end of module MCQ tests

Where Can I Do An Accuracy Checking Technician Course?

There are a number of course providers with approved Pharmacy Accuracy Checking Technician courses. This includes:

What Are The Benefits of Becoming an Accuracy Checking Technician?

While studying for another three to nine months and facing an accuracy checking technician exam may seem a bit daunting, there are a number of benefits to becoming an accuracy checking technician.

Accuracy checking technicians take on more responsibility within their pharmacy by being the person responsible for the final checks of prescriptions. You may find yourself assuming a more senior role within pharmacy, as you may be checking the work of more junior members of the pharmacy. So it’s a great way to broaden your experience and enhance your CV.