Pharmacy Technician Certification

See certification requirements by state

After graduating from a formal pharmacy technician training program (see: Pharmacy Tech Training), pharmacy techs may wish to become certified. Certification is a way of demonstrating that you meet a national standard for pharmacy technician knowledge.

Pharmacy technician certification is voluntary in some states, but most require it for employment. Whether or not it is required in your state, certification is a good step to ensure the highest level of employability.

Two organizations handle pharmacy technician certification in the US:

  • The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB)
  • The Institute for the Certification of Pharmacy Technicians (ICPT)

Both organizations offer similar certification programs, and both are accepted by most employers as a benchmark of quality in pharmacy technician education.

PTCB Certification for Pharmacy Technicians

The PTCB offers the designation of Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT) to pharmacy techs who meet educational and background requirements and who pass the PTCE exam. To qualify, a pharmacy tech must have:

  • A high school diploma or equivalent
  • No felony convictions
  • No drug or pharmacy related convictions
  • No restriction of registration or licensure, or regulations misconduct

After passing the exam and beconing certified as a CPhT, pharmacy techs are required to recertify every 2 years by gaining 20 hours of continuing education.

ICPT Certification for Pharmacy Technicians

The ICPT also offers the pharmacy tech certification Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT), through the Exam for the Certification of Pharmacy Technicians (ExCPT). To be eligible, candidates must:

  • Be at least 18 years old with a high school degree or GED
  • Not be guilty of a felony

Once certified, you will be given the designation of CPhT, and your certification must be renewed every two years. Renewal requires 20 hours of continuing education, with at least one hour in pharmacy law.

Becoming Certified

To become certified by either of these organizations, a pharmacy technician simply contacts one of the certification boards and requests to take the certification exam. The exam is offered four times per year in most states, and consists of 100 multiple-choice questions. The exam may be taken as many times as necessary in order to pass.

Does Your State Require Certification?

Below is a list of the 50 US states and whether or not they require certification from either the PTCB or ICPT.

Click to see a list of schools that can prepare you for pharmacy tech certification.

State

PTCB

ICPT

Alabama Not Required Not Required
Alaska Not Required Not Required
Arizona Required Required
Akansas Not Required Not Required
California Not Required Not Required
Colorado Not Required Not Required
Connecticut Not Required Required
Delaware Not Required Not Required
Florida Not Required Not Required
Georgia Not Required Not Required
Hawaii Not Required Not Required
Idaho Required Not Required
Illinois Required Not Required
Indiana Not Required Not Required
Iowa Required Not Required
Kansas Not Required Not Required
Kentucky Not Required Not Required
Louisiana Required Not Required
Maine Not Required Not Required
Maryland Required Required
Massachusetts Required Required
Michigan Not Required Not Required
Minnesota Not Required Required
Mississippi Not Required Not Required
Missouri Not Required Not Required
Montana Required Required
Nebraska Not Required Not Required
Nevada Not Required Not Required
New Hampshire Not Required Not Required
New Jersey Not Required Required
New Mexico Required Required
New York Not Required Not Required
North Carolina Not Required Not Required
North Dakota Not Required Not Required
Ohio Not Required Not Required
Oklahoma Not Required Not Required
Oregon Required Required
Pennsylvania Not Required Not Required
Rhode Island Not Required Required
South Carolina Required Not Required
South Dakota Not Required Not Required
Tennessee Required Not Required
Texas Required Not Required
Utah Required Required
Vermont Not Required Not Required
Virginia Required Required
Washington Required Required
West Virginia Not Required Not Required
Wisconsin Not Required Not Required
Wyoming Required Not Required

 

This table is informational only. You can find more complete information on state certification requirements by visiting the PTCB and ICPT Web sites.