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Technician News

  • 21 Sep 2020 4:08 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Fifth new PTCB specialty certificate is a step toward Advanced CPhT (CPhT-Adv) Certification

    WASHINGTON, DC -- The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB), the nation’s leading credentialing organization for pharmacy technicians, today launches an Assessment-Based Certificate Program in Controlled Substances Diversion Prevention. By earning the new credential, PTCB Certified Pharmacy Technicians (CPhTs) demonstrate their specialized knowledge in preventing controlled substance diversion across pharmacy practice settings. The new certificate is the first credential with formal training for pharmacy technicians in this area, and is one of five PTCB specialty certificates that count toward becoming an Advanced Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT-Adv). 

    According to the American Medical Association (AMA), the nation’s opioid epidemic is escalating as COVID-19 continues. More than 40 states in the US have reported increases in opioid-related mortality and ongoing concerns for those with substance use disorder (SUD) or mental illness. The pandemic is exacerbating many of the conditions that contribute to a rise in SUD, according to the National Institutes of Health. Pharmacy teams face the dual challenges of addressing SUD and COVID-19.

     “Our new program contributes to addressing the escalating substance use disorder crisis during COVID-19. Pharmacy technicians are on the front lines working to serve patients during the SUD epidemic and COVID-19 simultaneously,” said PTCB Executive Director and CEO William Schimmel. “We are committed to advancing patient safety through our credential programs. In addition to recognizing CPhTs with specialty knowledge in diversion prevention, our newest certificate establishes another rung in the pharmacy technician career ladder that advances patient care and pharmacy practice as a whole.”

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  • 20 Jul 2020 1:07 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    New credentials count toward Advanced Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT-Adv) credential

     WASHINGTON, DC -- The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB), the nation’s leading credentialing organization for pharmacy technicians, has introduced two new Assessment-Based Certificate Programs, one in Hazardous Drug Management and another in Billing and Reimbursement. The new certificates recognize PTCB Certified Pharmacy Technicians (CPhTs) with specialized knowledge and will count toward becoming an Advanced Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT-Adv).

     “PTCB continues to expand our credential program offerings to support the expanding responsibilities of technicians within the pharmacy,” said William Schimmel, PTCB Executive Director and CEO. “These programs are an opportunity for employers to identify technicians who are dedicated to advancing safety and, in many cases, are capable of leadership roles.” 

     The first program recognizes the achievements of PTCB CPhTs who have demonstrated competency in safe handling of hazardous drugs to minimize the risk of exposure to patients and staff. About 8 million US health care workers, including pharmacy staff, are potentially exposed to hazardous drugs every year, according to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, creating a risk of adverse health effects, skin rashes, and cancers. These drugs include antiviral medications, cancer therapies, and hormone agents.

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  • 7 Jul 2020 12:26 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    PTCB has launched PTCB Community, a brand-new free social platform for discussion, inspiration, and resources related to pharmacy technicians and their career paths. PTCB invites you to join and share your ideas and thoughts. Learn more and join the discussion.

  • 21 May 2020 12:21 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Are you ready to earn a new PTCB credential? PTCB has launched online proctored exam delivery for all PTCB credential exams during COVID-19. Choose the online testing option to take any PTCB exam, including new Assessment-Based Certificates and CSPT Certification, from your own computer. Read more.
    All PTCB credential exam fees are discounted during COVID-19 until further notice. We understand this is a challenging time for many and we are here to support the pharmacy technician community.
    Read more

  • 5 May 2020 3:33 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    CSPT Slide Deck

    from May 2, 2020 workshop

  • 26 Mar 2020 12:14 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Together with PTCB’s Board of Governors and staff, I want to thank and commend the more than 288,000 PTCB Certified Pharmacy Technicians (CPhTs) for their energy and dedication as they face an unprecedented event. Pharmacy technicians are on the front lines in the national effort to battle the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Many are bearing a heavier load and carrying increased responsibilities to support essential care services and serve patients during this time. 

    Our thoughts are with those whose families and communities have been directly affected by the pandemic, and particularly with pharmacy technicians across practice settings working tirelessly to manage evolving demands. The COVID-19 situation is changing by the hour and continues to challenge our nation’s pharmacy teams. 

    We are committed to serving CPhTs, as well as employers, educators, and the pharmacy community during this challenging period so they can continue to advance patient care. Below are some of the actions we are taking.

    For those who have applied and/or have scheduled to test:

    ·        Pearson VUE has suspended test delivery at its company-owned US and Canada-based testing centers until at least April 16 or whenever conditions are safe to reopen. Technicians who have scheduled test appointments will be able to reschedule their exam appointments in the future through Pearson VUE.

    ·        For those who are preparing to become CPhTs, we have extended our practice test sale for the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam (PTCE) through May 31.

    For recertification candidates:

    ·        We have extended recertification deadlines for 60 days for CPhTs and Certified Compounded Sterile Preparation Technicians (CSPTs) who have March 31, April 30, and May 31 expiration dates to allow them extra time for completing CE and submitting applications.

    ·        We just launched a listing of free continuing education programs so pharmacy technicians have easier access to the resources they need.

    As the COVID-19 situation continues to evolve, we will do our best to keep you informed. Please visit our COVID-19 webpage frequently at ptcb.org/covid19 for PTCB updates.

    We continue to work to keep our mission to advance medication safety and patient care as our top priority.

    Sincerely,
    Bill Schimmel

  • 17 Jan 2020 9:45 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Applicants must complete education and training or work experience to be eligible in 2020

    WASHINGTON, DC -- With the start of the new year, the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board® (PTCB®), the nation’s leading certifying organization for pharmacy technicians, has implemented new eligibility requirements and an updated Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam® (PTCE®) for its Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT) Program. The 2020 changes are based on data generated by PTCB’s most recent pharmacy Job Task Analysis, reflecting input from more than 40,000 technicians across practice settings, and guidance from the pharmacy community, including employers, educators, and organizations.

    “PTCB is focused solely on advancing medication safety, and we rely on data and input from pharmacy professionals to guide the direction of our program updates,” said PTCB Executive Director and CEO William Schimmel. “With the 2020 changes, PTCB reaffirms our commitment to ensuring that PTCB’s CPhT Program advances patient care. Pharmacists can trust that technicians who earn PTCB credentials have demonstrated current knowledge that is critical to performing their jobs safely in today’s pharmacy workplace.”

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  • 16 Aug 2019 9:42 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Study Shows Certified Pharmacy Technicians are More Committed to a Pharmacy Career Than Noncertified
    by Laura Humphrey | Aug 07, 2019

    More likely to seek expanded responsibilities

    WASHINGTON, DC -- New research shows nationally certified pharmacy technicians are more committed to a pharmacy career and have a greater desire to take on new and expanded responsibilities than noncertified. The study*, “Assessing Pharmacy Technician Certification,” published in the June 2019 Journal of the American Pharmacists Association (JAPhA), compared the viewpoints of certified and noncertified technicians, and explored the perceived value of certification in the areas of medication safety, skills and abilities, experience, career engagement and satisfaction, and productivity.

    Based on the findings, certified technicians have a stronger organizational commitment and view themselves as making fewer medication errors. They are more likely than noncertified to complete a pharmacy technician training program at a community college or vocational school, work 40 hours or more per week, and have an expectation for higher wages, according to the study.

    The majority of respondents, both certified and noncertified, said they have confidence in performing the final check on another technician’s preparation of a new or refilled medication, a process known as Technician Product Verification (TPV) or tech-check-tech. Most in both categories reported a sense of pride in their work.

    The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) funded the research through a grant, and played no role in the analysis, interpretation, or publishing of the results. “PTCB places the safety of patients above all, so we study technician credentialing and our own programs to ensure they advance medication safety by certifying qualified technicians,” said PTCB Executive Director and CEO William Schimmel. “This research provides new data that identifies specific attributes of certified technicians, including higher career engagement and more desire for job advancement.

    “As the role of the pharmacist continues to transform to more patient-focused direct care, there is an increasing call for technicians to fill advanced roles and responsibilities. This study tells us that certified technicians are more likely to have a desire for such duties and roles,” said Schimmel. “We use data like this to help inform our programs and demonstrate their value to the pharmacy community and the public.”

    In March, PTCB announced it is expanding its credentialing programs, adding five assessment-based certificate programs for advanced roles, and an Advanced Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT-Adv) credential, during the next 2 years. The five certificate programs will include: Technician Product Verification (TPV); Medication History; Billing and Reimbursement; Controlled Substance Diversion Prevention; and Hazardous Drug Management. The TPV and Medication History programs will be the first to be offered later this year. 

    A 2016 PTCB-sponsored public perception survey revealed that 85% of the public believes it is very important for pharmacy technicians to be certified: 94% say their trust in pharmacy technicians’ work would increase with standardized certification and training; 76% say they would seek out a different pharmacy if their current pharmacy’s technicians were not certified. Respondents said certification’s major benefit is its impact on accuracy and professional knowledge.

    Of the 45 states that regulate pharmacy technicians, 19 require national certification in their regulations. There are more than 288,000 active PTCB-Certified pharmacy technicians (CPhTs) in the US.

    METHODOLOGY
    The research method was a cross-sectional survey of pharmacy technicians from six states representing four US regions. Technician mailing lists were purchased from Boards of Pharmacy, and randomly selected technicians were sent survey invitations. Six hundred seventy-six technicians (547 certified, 103 noncertified, and 26 previously certified) responded, representing a range of pharmacy practice settings.

    *”Assessing Pharmacy Technician Certification: A National Survey Comparing Certified And Noncertified Pharmacy Technicians”: James S. Wheeler, Chelsea P. Renfro, Junling Wang, Yanru Qiao, Kenneth C. Hohmeier; JAPhA, June 2019.

  • 21 Jun 2019 1:52 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Thanks to the hard work of Sara Fern, CPhT, CSHP's Pharmacy Technician Task Force co-chair, we have been awarded a grant to support projects that promote medication safety and advance the role of pharmacy technicians. The grants were made through PTCB’s new Partnership Funds Program launched in March to support selected projects of the 72 state pharmacy associations that participate in PTCB’s State Associate Program.

    The grant will fund activities in compounded sterile preparation, technician product verification (TPV), and best practices in medication safety. CSHP's Compounded Sterile Preparation Technician (CSPT) workshop will be available to all CT pharmacy technicians.

About CSHP

Since 1948, the Connecticut Society of Health-System Pharmacists has represented the professional interests and provided professional development for CT pharmacists, educators and pharmacists in training.

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