PTCB To Change CPhT Program Eligibility Requirements and Update Exam in 2020

November 28, 2018

PTCB is preparing for significant Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT) Program changes announced in January 2018 that will take effect on January 1, 2020. With these updates, PTCB reaffirms the organization’s commitment to ensuring that PTCB’s CPhT Program advances medication safety and patient care.

What is changing in 2020?

Updated Exam Content Knowledge Areas
PTCB has updated the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam (PTCE) content outline with specific knowledge areas to be reflected in the updated PTCE beginning January 1, 2020. The updated content reflects results from PTCB’s most recent profession-wide Job Analysis conducted in 2016. 

New CPhT Candidate Eligibility Requirements =
PTCB believes in the value of both education and work experience as pathways to prepare pharmacy technicians for the PTCE. Beginning on January 1, 2020, PTCB will offer two pathways to eligibility. CPhT applicants will be required to either complete: 1) a PTCB-recognized education/training program; OR  2) equivalent work experience. 

Pathway Option 1: PTCB-recognized Education/training Program Completion
Most candidates are expected to choose a PTCB-recognized education/training program as their primary path to eligibility. A list of PTCB-recognized programs will be published on PTCB’s website in early 2019, and will be updated periodically. 

Pathway Option 2: Equivalent Work Experience The path to eligibility through work experience will serve experienced pharmacy technicians who have not completed a PTCB-recognized education/training program. Technicians applying for certification through this path will need to have at least 500 hours of work experience. The work experience eligibility path ensures that experienced technicians are able to pursue national certification with PTCB.

PTCB Recognition of Education/Training Programs for the CPhT Program
ASHP/ACPE and ABHES-accredited pharmacy technician educators are accepted as PTCB-recognized for the CPhT Program. Recognition is contingent upon their continuing accredited status. 

Non-accredited education/training programs are required to apply for approval as PTCB-recognized for the CPhT Program by completing an application with attestation form. Programs seeking recognition must verify that they comply with PTCB standards and requirements. They are required to review their curriculum, comparing it to PTCB’s 2020 CPhT Knowledge Reference document, and submit attestation that their knowledge content includes specific knowledge.

  • Being a PTCB-recognized education/training program for the CPhT Program ensures that students in the program will be eligible to take the PTCE after completing the program. 
  • Students enrolled in programs not recognized by PTCB will not be eligible to take the PTCE after January 1, 2020, unless they can qualify via the work experience path. 
  • There is no fee to become a PTCB-recognized program.
  • Programs approved for recognition will receive an email confirming their program is recognized.
  • Annual attestation will be required to maintain program recognition.