Pharmaceutical technical assistants (PTA) are authorized as qualified employees to exercise pharmaceutical activities under the supervision of pharmacists. These are the development, production, testing and selling of pharmaceuticals. These activities result firstly from the high demands on the quality of medicines, as required by the German and European pharmacopeia and secondly from the right of patients to request advice and information on medicines.
Pharmaceutical technical assistants are professionals whose area of application is in both in a chemists shop and the pharmaceutical industry. Further employment opportunities are to be found in the public sector such as at research institutes and universities. PTA’s are a link between the various scientific departments, due to their expertise in all the natural sciences.
Through the increased health awareness and increasing life expectancy on the one hand and the cost-containment measures on the other hand, a comprehensive health information is expected from the field of pharmacy and therefore also of PTA’s. These include topics such as nursing, nutrition, dietetics, pest control, documentation of all relevant activities,the handling of hazardous substances and the handling of the pharmaceutical software.
The focus of the theoretical education is on pharmaceutical chemistry, pharmacognosy and pharmacology, in which the understanding of the effects of drugs is learnt. In galenik, the production of pharmaceuticals and all relevant details are dealt with and the effects pharmaceuticals can have following differing manufacturing techniques.
Pharmaceuticals are also produced in practical classes and their quality checked chemically and microscopically. As part of the practical training, the advice-intensive topics such as cosmetics and personal hygiene are taught by specially-trained teachers. Likewise, the work in accordance with legal regulations of the Medicines Act (AMG) and the pharmaceutical work regulations is the foundation of this education course. The correct documentation of manufacturing and test procedures is essential in a laboratory and is taught the together with the topics of hygiene, hazardous materials, health and safety and the learning of different manufacturing techniques.
Training lasts 4 semesters (2 years) plus 6 months of internship in a pharmacy. You can start the winter term in September and given a suitable number of participants, also in the summer semester in March. (see also: registration deadlines)
The first examination is to be taken after 4 semesters (exam subjects see above) and the second exam following the practical training as a pharmacist.
Requirements & Further Education
A prerequisite for the education course is a high school or an equivalent degree, an interest in practical work (cleanliness, orderliness) and the enthusiasm for the natural sciences.
Following the successful conclusion of the PTA-training, you can qualify for a postgraduate scholarship. In addition to this, you take part in an an extensive first-aid course (16 hrs), a certificate for the measurement of compression stockings, as well as various internal training offers given by external speakers.