New York State Pharmacy Aide Open Competitive Exam

Click here to view the announcement and Apply Online or Print out a Paper Application

Appointees who work in the five boroughs of New York City or in Nassau, Suffolk, Rockland, or Westchester Counties will receive an additional $3,026 annual downstate adjustment. Appointees who work in Dutchess, Orange, or Putnam Counties will receive an additional $1,513 annual mid-Hudson adjustment.

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Minimum Qualifications

On or before October 25, 2014, you must have a high school diploma or a high school equivalency diploma, issued by an appropriate educational authority. You must also have one year of experience assisting with the filling of medical prescriptions under the direct supervision of a licensed Pharmacist.

Substitution: Pharmacy Technician Certification by the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) or a certificate or diploma from a pharmacy technician training program accredited by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists may be substituted for the required one year of experience.


  1. Your high school diploma or equivalency diploma must have been awarded by a high school or educational institution recognized by the NYS Education Department as following acceptable educational practices. If your high school diploma was awarded by an educational institution outside the United States and its territories, you must provide independent verification of equivalency. You can write to the Examination Information Desk of the NYS Department of Civil Service for a list of acceptable companies who provide this service. You must pay the required evaluation fee. If you are applying on the Internet, you must mail the independent verification of equivalency to the New York State Department of Civil Service, Albany, New York 12239. Attention: S1KAC.
  2. In some locations where a motor vehicle is used in the transport of medication, candidates must also possess a valid New York State driver’s license appropriate for the vehicle assigned.
  3. Information on pharmacy technician certification can be obtained by contacting the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB), 2200 C Street, Suite 101, NW, Washington, DC 20037-2985, (800) 363 8012, Link).
  4. Information on pharmacy technician programs accredited by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists can be obtained by contacting them at 7272 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda, MD 20814, (301) 657-3000, Link).
  5. IMPORTANT: As the processing fee is non-refundable, verify that you entered the correct examination number and title on your online or paper application prior to submitting. If you apply online, you should immediately review your email conformation notice to verify that you applied for the correct examination. If you do not receive a confirmation number after submitting your online application, your application was NOT received by the Department of Civil Service. No late applications will be accepted after the filing deadline has passed.
  6. Appropriate part-time and volunteer experience, which can be verified, will be accepted on a prorated basis.
  7. New York State residence is not required.

The Positions

These positions exist in New York State government facilities operated by the Department of Corrections and Community Supervision, Department of Health (Helen Hayes Hospital; Veterans Home at Oxford; Veterans Home at Montrose), the Office of Mental Health, the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities, the State University of New York (Upstate Medical University at Syracuse; Downstate Medical Center at Brooklyn; and Stony Brook University Hospital).

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Working under the direct and immediate supervision of a Pharmacist, a Pharmacy Aide assists in preparing medications for the Pharmacist to dispense and performs administrative tasks such as maintaining files; preparing reports and logs; managing product recalls; serving as a receptionist/office manager; maintaining an inventory of pharmaceutical supplies; assisting in preparing pharmaceutical orders; receiving pharmaceutical supplies; entering data in appropriate records; assisting in prepackaging prescriptions, the repackaging and delivery of drugs; and maintaining a clean, safe, and professional environment within the pharmacy.

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Subject of Examination

There will be a written test which you must pass in order to be considered for appointment. The written test is designed to test for knowledge, skills, and/or abilities in such areas as:

  1. Clerical operations with letters and numbers – These questions test for skills and abilities in clerical operations involving alphabetizing, comparing, checking and counting. The questions require you to follow the specific directions given for each question which may involve alphabetizing, comparing, checking and counting given groups of letters and/or numbers.
  2. Name and number checking – These questions test for the ability to distinguish between sets of words, letters, and/or numbers that are almost exactly alike. Material is usually presented in two or three columns, and you will have to determine how the entry in the first column compares with the entry in the second column and possibly the third. You will be instructed to mark your answers according to a designated code provided in the directions.
  3. Office record keeping – These questions test your ability to perform common office record keeping tasks. The test consists of two or more “sets” of questions, each set concerning a different problem. Typical record keeping problems might involve the organization or collation of data from several sources; scheduling; maintaining a record system using running balances; or completion of a table summarizing data using totals, subtotals, averages and percents. You should bring with you a hand-held battery- or solar-powered calculator for use on this test. You will not be permitted to use the calculator function of your cell phone.

Your final score must be 70 or higher in order to pass. Rank on the eligible list will be determined after adding any wartime veterans’ and Civil Service Law Section 85-a credits to your final passing score.


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