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How Do I Earn PTCB Certification?

A typical answer sheet for a multiple choice standardized test, such as those required to earn PTCB certification.
Article Details
  • Written By: N. Madison
  • Edited By: Jenn Walker
  • Last Modified Date: 20 March 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
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Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) certification is a process a person completes to become a certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT) in the United States. In order to become a certified pharmacy technician through this organization, a person has to meet certain eligibility requirements, complete an application, pay a fee, and pass a standardized test. A person must also earn continuing education credits in order to renew his credential every two years.

An individual who wants to seek PTCB certification must apply to take the exam. If he is eligible and his application is approved, he has 90 days to take it. The exam is given year-round at Pearson VUE testing sites. It includes 90 questions, which are all multiple choice and covers the following three areas: assisting pharmacists in serving patients, medication and inventory control systems, and the administration and management of pharmacy practices.

To prepare for PTCB certification, a person may enroll in a pharmacy technician training program that covers the concepts that are likely to be on the exam. He may also obtain books, study guides, preparation manuals, and practice tests. If he is working in a pharmacy, the pharmacist may also offer suggestions for studying for the exam.

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When a person wants to earn PTCB certification, he must first make sure he is eligible. To be eligible, a person must have a high school diploma or its equivalent. He must also be free of felony and drug convictions, including those that are pharmacy related. If a person has had any type of pharmaceutical licensing or registration denied, suspended, or revoked, he may not be eligible for PTCB certification. An individual may ask to be considered exempt from any of the eligibility requirements, however, and the PTCB will consider such a request on a case-by-case basis.

Established in 1995, PTCB is an organization based in Washington, D.C. and governed by five different pharmacy organizations, including the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy. Its purpose is to create standards for people who wanted to work and be certified as pharmacy technicians. A person who earns PTCB certification is said to have the skills and knowledge that are needed to work with a pharmacist, helping to ensure that pharmaceutical processes provide for patient safety and efficient service. Though the PTCB does grant certification, it does not handle licenses or establish regulations within the pharmaceutical industry.

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