What is Continuing Education?
According to the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), continuing pharmacy education, "is a structured educational activity designed or intended to support the continuing development of pharmacists and/or pharmacy technicians to maintain and enhance their competence. Continuing pharmacy education should promote problem-solving and critical thinking and be applicable to the safe practice of pharmacy."
Continuing Education Requirements
Certificants must complete a minimum of twenty (20) hours of continuing education (CE) during each two (2) year recertification cycle. Any CE hours earned after January 1, 2015 must be in pharmacy technician-specific subject matter. For recertification candidates, one (1) hour of the twenty (20) hours must be in the subject of pharmacy law and one (1) hour must be in the subject of patient safety (refer to the ACPE definition of patient safety in the ACPE Policy and Procedures Manual, topic designation 05). For reinstatement candidates, two (2) of the twenty (20) hours must be in the subject of pharmacy law and one (1) hour must be in the subject of patient safety. A maximum of ten (10) hours of the twenty (20) hours may be earned by completing a relevant college course with a grade of “C” or better. A maximum of five (5) hours may be earned by completing in-service projects.
CPhTs must complete all CE hours within the two (2) year recertification cycle (on or before the expiration date). No CE hours completed before certification is granted may be used to satisfy recertification requirements. CE hours can only be applied to the recertification cycle in which they are completed, and cannot be carried over and applied to future cycles.
Candidates for reinstatement may complete CE on any date after their last recertification date and up to 1 (one) year after their expiration date. For example, if a candidate's certification expired on 11/30/2016 and their last recertification date was 12/1/2014, they may complete CE to submit for reinstatement between 12/1/2014 and 11/30/2017.
Pharmacy Technician-Specific Subject Matter
Certificants must satisfy CE requirements in pharmacy technician-specific subject matter. In order to qualify as pharmacy technician-specific, a CE program's objectives must assess or sustain the competency critical to pharmacy technician practice stated in PTCB’s Pharmacy Technician Certification Examination Blueprint
PTCB has determined that all CE programs offered by ACPE-accredited providers with the target audience designation "T" satisfy the requirement of pertaining to pharmacy technician-specific subject matter. Other CE programs will be accepted if PTCB determines that the program's objectives assess or sustain the competency critical to pharmacy technician practice stated in PTCB’s Pharmacy Technician Certification Examination Blueprint. Any CE hours earned after January 1, 2015 with the target audience designation "P” (pharmacist-specific) will not be accepted. For more information please refer to the Recertification Policy.
CPhTs who are unsure about whether or not PTCB will accept a CE activity may submit the Continuing Education Pre-Approval Request Form for CE pre-approval to PTCB. Requests must include sufficient information to demonstrate that the CE activity pertains to pharmacy technician-specific subject matter. Pre-approval requests are typically processed in 10 to 15 business days.
Continuing Education Documentation
CPhTs must maintain their own records of CE hours earned during each recertification period, and are responsible for maintaining these records for at least one (1) year after the certification cycle ends. Acceptable documentation of participation in a college course may be either a transcript or a grade report. For in-service projects or other CEs for which a certificate of participation is not available, the supervising pharmacist or instructor must complete the Universal Continuing Education Form.