PTCB Awards Grants for Medication Safety Projects To Four State Pharmacy Associations

June 20, 2019

Washington, DC -- The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) has awarded grants to four state pharmacy associations in Connecticut, Iowa, North Dakota, and Tennessee to support projects that promote medication safety and advance the role of pharmacy technicians. The grants were made through PTCB’s new Partnership Funds Program launched in March to support selected projects of the 72 state pharmacy associations that participate in PTCB’s State Associate Program. The four grants, totaling $27,000, will fund activities in compounded sterile preparation, technician product verification (TPV), and best practices in medication safety.

A panel of pharmacy expert volunteers chose the award recipients based on significance to medication safety and relevance to advancing technician roles. “PTCB continually collaborates with state pharmacy associations to advance patient safety and care,” said Ryan Burke, PharmD, PTCB Director of Professional Affairs. “The selected projects offer technicians an ideal opportunity to engage with the pharmacy community and expand their own knowledge and skills to support the profession.”

The Connecticut Society of Health-System Pharmacists (CSHP) was awarded funds to provide a workshop to help prepare technicians for the Compounded Sterile Preparation Technician®(CSPT®) Program. It will be available to all Certified Pharmacy Technicians (CPhTs) in the state. “CPhTs need extensive knowledge and skill to earn their CSPT certification, and this workshop will facilitate their advancement and promote safety in the pharmacy,” said Sara Fern, CPhT, Coordinator of Pharmacy Technician Education and Training at Yale-New Haven Hospital and Co-Chair of the CSHP Pharmacy Technician Task Force.

The Iowa Pharmacy Association received a grant to build a toolkit for implementing technician product verification (TPV) services in pharmacies across the state. New Iowa Board of Pharmacy regulations allow technicians to conduct these services. “Advancing technicians’ role with TPV frees pharmacists to provide more patient care services, like health screenings, medication therapy management, and immunizations. Optimizing pharmacists’ opportunities to provide care can improve patient health outcomes, quality, and value,” said Kate Gainer, PharmD, Executive Vice President and CEO at the Iowa Pharmacy Association.

The Northland Association of Pharmacy Technicians and North Dakota Pharmacists Association were awarded funds to jointly develop policy and procedures manuals, supported by the North Dakota Board of Pharmacy, for institutional, community, and long-term care pharmacies to initiate and support TPV. Their program will include a pilot project at four sites, and one free TPV continuing education (CE) course.

The fourth grant, awarded to the Tennessee Pharmacists Association (TPA), will support a project to bring together members, including technicians, for education and training that enhances pharmacy practice and delivers live CE to at least 50 technicians. TPA will explore developing enduring education for technicians who may not be able to attend live training.

Organizations that participate in PTCB’s State Associate Program have an exclusive opportunity to request the grant funds. PTCB expects to offer two funding cycles per year, and plans to open the next application period in August.