Pharmacy Technician Licensing
In 44 states and the District of Columbia, individuals who work as pharmacy technicians are required to obtain a state-issued license.
Pharmacy technicians play an important role in the daily function of pharmacies, often helping with customer service, inventory, compounding medicines, and filling prescriptions. Before an individual performs these services in a pharmacy, most states require individuals to meet prerequisites and apply for a license through the state board of pharmacy. Only six states (Colorado, Delaware, Hawaii, New York, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin) do not currently have a registration requirement for pharmacy technicians.
Registering for the First Time
Before an applicant can apply for a license as a pharmacy technician, they must meet the prerequisites for licensure. Many states offer several methods of qualifying for licensure, such as meeting education requirements, completing on the job training, having an associate or advanced degree in pharmacy technology, or completing an independent training program.
One of the most common qualifications for licensure is obtaining a Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT) certification from the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB). In order to become certified through the PTCB, applicants must complete a PTCB-recognized training program and pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam (PTCE).
After meeting the prerequisites for licensure, applicants should submit a license application along with the application fee to the state board of pharmacy. Once the application is approved, the board will typically send a certificate of licensure in the mail.
Pharmacy technician licenses typically need to be renewed annually or biennially. In addition to filing a renewal application and paying the license renewal fee, a few states require technicians to complete continuing education (CE) hours. Continuing education requirements vary by state, but most require licensees to complete at least 20 hours of CE per license period. There are many independent continuing education providers that offer both in-person and online opportunities to gain the needed CE hours.
Explore Licensing by State
Click on a link below to view licensing information in your state.
Controlled Substance Registration - In addition to a pharmacy license, controlled substance registration registration is required in many states for pharmacies that distribute controlled substances.
NABP (National Association of Boards of Pharmacy) - Host a variety of programs and resources relating to pharmacist and pharmacy licensure and examination.
Pharmacist in Charge - A licensed pharmacist designated by a pharmacy to act as the party responsible for compliance with regulations.
VPP (Verified Pharmacy Program) - A program run by NABP that allows state boards to share information and more easily register out-of-state pharmacies.