PTCB Developing Advanced CPhT Credential

Five New Advanced Assessment-Based Certificate Programs Will Precede Rollout

March 9, 2019

WASHINGTON, DC -- The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB), the nation’s leading certifying body for pharmacy technicians, will expand its credentialing programs by adding five assessment-based certificate programs for advanced technician roles, and an Advanced Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT-Adv) credential. The new assessment-based certificate programs will recognize the important contributions pharmacy technicians make to advance medication safety. Candidates seeking to be a CPhT-Adv will be required to have earned at least four of the new certificates to be eligible. 

Pharmacy technicians are increasingly immersed in a variety of advanced responsibilities while pharmacists become more involved in direct patient care. According to William Schimmel, PTCB Executive Director and CEO, technicians are seeking ways to demonstrate their advanced knowledge in specific roles and show their commitment to medication safety. “Assessment-based certificate programs are an important step for pharmacy technicians who seek recognition for their education and training, and their dedication to patient safety,” Schimmel said. 

The five certificate programs under development are:

  • Technician Product Verification (Tech-Check-Tech)
  • Medication History
  • Controlled Substance Diversion Prevention 
  • Billing and Reimbursement
  • Hazardous Drug Management

Candidates must hold an active PTCB CPhT certification and complete a PTCB-recognized education/training program to be eligible to apply for the certificate programs. Current PTCB CPhTs who have completed at least four of the certificate programs and 3 years of work experience will be eligible to earn a CPhT-Adv as early as mid-2020.

PTCB is committed to ensuring its credentials adhere to the most up-to-date medication safety standards as pharmacy technicians take on more responsibilities in their pharmacy careers, according to PTCB Certification Council Immediate-Past President David Bright, PharmD, BCACP, Associate Professor in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences at Ferris State University College of Pharmacy in Big Rapids, MI. “PTCB is resolute in recognizing advanced career paths for pharmacy technicians by offering the new Advanced CPhT credential built on certificate programs that validate technician capabilities and adhere to rigorous safety standards,” said Bright.

Experts, including PTCB staff, pharmacists, technician educators, and CPhTs are developing the assessment-based certificate programs, beginning with the Technician Product Verification (Tech-Check-Tech) and Medication History programs, which are expected to be available later this year. 

“PTCB is fortunate to be working with experts who are deeply knowledgeable and highly experienced in these areas to build the new assessment-based certificate programs,” said Levi Boren, PhD, PTCB Senior Director of Certification, “PTCB is committed to developing advanced  certificates that combine rigorous and valid exams with completion of high quality targeted education.”

CPhTs who earn the CPhT-Adv credential will be required to complete specific continuing education and renew on a regular basis to maintain its active status. 

PTCB currently offers two certification programs: the Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT) offered since 1995, and the Compounded Sterile Preparation Technician (CSPT™) launched in 2017. Assessment-based certificate programs will be a new type of PTCB credential with different requirements from certification programs.