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Massage Therapist vs Pharmacy Technician

Massage Therapist vs Pharmacy Technician

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Key Points:

  • Massage Therapists provide therapeutic massages, while Pharmacy Technicians assist pharmacists in dispensing medications and providing customer service.
  • Massage Therapists typically earn a lower median annual salary compared to Pharmacy Technicians.
  • Massage Therapist jobs are expected to grow faster than Pharmacy Technician jobs in the coming years.
  • Both jobs require formal training, but Massage Therapists may have more options for online programs, while Pharmacy Technicians usually need in-person training.
  • Massage Therapy training is generally less expensive and shorter than the training required to become a Pharmacy Technician.

When it comes to choosing a vocational career, there are many options to consider. Two popular choices in the healthcare field are becoming a massage therapist or a pharmacy technician. While both professions provide opportunities to help others and make a difference in people's lives, there are some key differences between the two. In this blog post, we will explore the roles and responsibilities of both massage therapists and pharmacy technicians, as well as the education and training required for each profession. We will also take a look at the career outlook and salary potential for both careers.

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What is a Massage Therapist and Pharmacy Technician?

Massage Therapist:

A massage therapist is a healthcare professional who specializes in providing therapeutic massages to clients. They use various techniques to manipulate muscles and soft tissues in order to alleviate pain, reduce stress, and promote relaxation. Massage therapists may work in a variety of settings, including spas, wellness centers, chiropractic offices, and even in clients' homes.

Pharmacy Technician:

A pharmacy technician is an essential member of the healthcare team who assists pharmacists in dispensing medications to patients. They are responsible for tasks such as filling prescriptions, measuring medications, labeling bottles, and maintaining inventory. Pharmacy technicians typically work in retail pharmacies, hospital pharmacies, or mail-order pharmacies.

Difference between a Massage Therapist and Pharmacy Technician:

While both massage therapists and pharmacy technicians work in the healthcare field, there are several key differences between the two professions. Here are some of the main distinctions:

  • Job Duties: Massage therapists focus on providing therapeutic massages to clients, while pharmacy technicians assist pharmacists with medication-related tasks.
  • Work Environment: Massage therapists often work in relaxing spa-like settings, while pharmacy technicians work in pharmacies and healthcare facilities.
  • Direct Patient Interaction: Massage therapists have direct contact with clients and provide hands-on care, while pharmacy technicians primarily interact with pharmacists and other healthcare professionals.
  • Specialization: Massage therapists may choose to specialize in specific types of massage, such as sports massage or prenatal massage. Pharmacy technicians do not typically have specialized areas of practice.
  • Licensing and Certification: Massage therapists are required to be licensed in most states, while pharmacy technicians may need to be certified depending on the state.

Massage Therapist vs Pharmacy Technician: Job Description

Massage Therapist:

  • Assess clients' needs and create a customized treatment plan
  • Perform therapeutic massages using various techniques, such as Swedish massage, deep tissue massage, or hot stone massage
  • Educate clients on self-care techniques and provide recommendations for at-home care
  • Maintain accurate client records and track progress over time
  • Stay up-to-date on the latest research and techniques in the field of massage therapy

Pharmacy Technician:

  • Assist pharmacists in filling prescriptions and preparing medications for patients
  • Measure and package medications accurately
  • Maintain inventory and order supplies as needed
  • Answer customer questions about medications and provide information on dosage, side effects, and potential drug interactions
  • Ensure that medications are stored properly and securely

Massage Therapist vs Pharmacy Technician: Education and Training

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Massage Therapist:

  • Education: Most states require massage therapists to complete a postsecondary program that includes a minimum number of training hours. These programs may be found at community colleges, vocational schools, or specialized massage therapy schools.
  • Licensing: After completing an approved program, massage therapists must pass a licensing exam specific to their state. Some states may also require additional certifications or continuing education to maintain licensure.
  • Skills and Qualities: Massage therapists should have strong communication skills, empathy, physical stamina, and an understanding of human anatomy and physiology.

Pharmacy Technician:

  • Education: Pharmacy technicians typically complete a postsecondary certificate or associate degree program. These programs can be found at community colleges or vocational schools.
  • Certification: While certification is not always required, many employers prefer to hire pharmacy technicians who are certified. The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) and the National Healthcareer Association (NHA) offer nationally recognized certification exams.
  • Skills and Qualities: Pharmacy technicians should have strong attention to detail, excellent organizational skills, basic math skills, and the ability to work well as part of a team.

Massage Therapist vs Pharmacy Technician: Career Outlook and Salary

Massage Therapist:

  • According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the employment of massage therapists is projected to grow 21 percent from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations.
  • The median annual wage for massage therapists was $42,820 in May 2020, with the highest 10 percent earning more than $83,040.

Pharmacy Technician:

  • The BLS projects that employment of pharmacy technicians will grow 4 percent from 2019 to 2029, which is about as fast as the average for all occupations.
  • The median annual wage for pharmacy technicians was $34,020 in May 2020, with the highest 10 percent earning more than $49,130.

Final Thoughts

Choosing a vocational career is an important decision that requires careful consideration of your interests, skills, and goals. Both massage therapy and pharmacy technology offer rewarding opportunities to make a positive impact on others' lives. Whether you choose to pursue a career as a massage therapist or a pharmacy technician, you can feel confident knowing that you are entering a field that is in demand and provides opportunities for growth and personal fulfillment.

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Marce Arnejo
Written by
Marce Arnejo

Marce Arnejo is part of the Sales team at Dreambound. Her role involves seeking out schools and institutions to provide valuable opportunities for students seeking a career in the healthcare sector. Beyond her professional life, Marce is passionate about music and gaming. She finds joy in exploring various genres of music and using gaming to unwind and immerse herself in virtual worlds. Her diverse interests enrich her personal life and contribute to her work by bringing new ideas and creativity.

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