North Carolina Association of Pharmacists
   Advancing Pharmacy. Improving Health.

Member Login

Social Media

Website Sponsors

Pharmacists Mutual Insurance Company        

Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB)

PTCB is implementing changes in the PTCB Certification Program. The new changes will advance pharmacy technician qualifications by elevating PTCB’s standards for national certification and recertification. PTCB is phasing in the changes during a seven-year period through 2020. The changes include accredited education requirements and changes in acceptable continuing education (CE) programs for recertification. 

Program Changes


By 2020, PTCB will require each new candidate for certification to complete an ASHP/ACPE-accredited pharmacy technician education program. 


To qualify for PTCB recertification, each Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT) must complete:
The number of CE hours accepted will be modified for those earned:
  • Via college/university coursework—from 15 to 10 hours beginning in 2016
  • Through in-services —from 10 to 5 hours starting in 2015, and from 5 to 0 in 2018
For further information regarding the history and implementation plans for these changes, please refer to this Background Document

Comment Period

On May 31, 2013, PTCB completed a 90-day open online comment period which allowed members of the pharmacy community to share best practices for implementing the new requirements. Procedures, guidelines, and other details will be published closer to the planned implementation dates. 

Open Forums

PTCB is working closely with educators, employers, boards of pharmacy, and state/national organizations to best implement these decisions. During early 2013, PTCB asked for live feedback from pharmacy technicians and stakeholders at the following open forums across the country: 

American Pharmacists Association (APhA) Annual Meeting and Exposition 2013
Session: Sunday, March 3 from 2:00-3:00 pm in room 153B, in Los Angeles, CA

California Pharmacists Association (CPhA) West Coast Pharmacy Exchange
Session: Sunday, March 17 from 5:00-6:00 pm, in Monterey, CA

South Carolina Society of Health-System Pharmacists (SCSHP) 2013 Annual Meeting
Sessions: Sunday, March 24 & Monday, March 25 from 3:30-4:30 pm, in Charleston, SC

Pharmacy Society of Wisconsin (PSW) Educational Conference
Session: Thursday, April 18 from 1:00-2:00 pm, in Madison, WI

North Dakota Pharmacists Association (NDPhA) Annual Convention
Session: Friday, April 26, in Dickinson, ND

Texas Society of Health-System Pharmacists (TSHP) 2013 Annual Meeting
Session: Saturday, April 27 in Austin, TX

C.R.E.S.T. Initiative

PTCB launched the C.R.E.S.T. Initiative in 2011 by hosting a summit focused on the areas of Consumer Awareness, Resources, Education, State Policy, and Testing relating to pharmacy technicians. Attendees included pharmacists, Certified Pharmacy Technicians (CPhTs), educators, major employers, State Boards of Pharmacy, as well as representatives from state and national pharmacy organizations.
During the summit, participants expressed the need for the profession to move beyond philosophical discussion and make decisions on the future of pharmacy practice and the role of pharmacy technicians.
Recommendations from the summit include eligibility requirements for the PTCB Certification Program, requirements for recertification, and the creation of new specialty certification programs.

In March 2012, the C.R.E.S.T. Initiative Steering Committee, composed of 10 leaders in pharmacy, developed and launched a profession-wide survey on the above recommendations. The survey was completed by more than 17,000 pharmacy technicians and pharmacists nationwide. Results from the survey will provide the PTCB Board of Governors and Certification Council with important input from the profession on advancing the work of pharmacy technicians and the future of the PTCB Certification Program.