A Chemotherapy Technician is trained to mix patients’ drugs that destroy cancer cells in the body. Chemotherapy is treatment with anti-cancer drugs that are given into a vein (IV) or by mouth. Chemotherapy technicians are part of the team of healthcare professionals who care for patients receiving chemotherapy: they work directly with the medicines that treat cancer.
Chemotherapy Technicians work in hospitals or cancer centers with pharmacies. After the infusion nurse delivers the order to the pharmacy, the pharmacist reviews the order for accuracy and completeness and enters the order into the computer system. The computer system then prints a label, which is eventually attached to the bag or syringe of chemotherapy. Chemotherapy Technicians reviews the label and gathers the supplies including needles, syringes, alcoholm wipes, and the containers of chemotherapy. These containers are called vials. If the drug comes as a powder, the technician adds another solution to dissolve the powder. The technician uses a syringe to remove the exact amount of chemotherapy from the vial. The technician then adds the chemotherapy to a bag of fluid or to a syringe and places the label onto the bag or syringe.
Chemotherapy Pharmacy Technician Duties:
-prepares compounds and dispenses medications, chemotherapy, and intravenous medications on physician’s orders
-maintains clean and safe operation of biological safety cabinets.
-assists pharmacists, physicians, nurses, and staff as needed
-responsible for ordering all clinical supplies for the pharmacy, infusion area, and clinic; reconciles invoices.
-use electronic health record and electronic inventory management systems.
Chemotherapy technician certification:
Some community colleges and medical training schools offer one-year training courses solely for chemotherapy technicians, but many people take a general training course for pharmacy technicians, which teaches the skills needed for Chemotherapy Technicians.
Chemotherapy Certification Course trains pharmacy technicians on the topic of sterile product preparation of cytotoxic drugs and aseptic technique, and safely handling chemotherapy drugs. There is potential health risks associated with handling chemotherapy drugs. By using meticulous and correct preparation techniques and knowing the appropriate safety equipment to use, exposure can be minimized.
The average salary for chemotherapy technician jobs is $29,000. Average chemotherapy technician salaries can vary greatly due to company, location, industry, experience and benefits.