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Continuing Education Requirements for Pharmacists and Certified Pharmacy Technicians

Pharmacist CE Requirements

The Iowa Board of Pharmacy Examiners requires 30 contact hours (3.0 CEU) of pharmacist continuing education for every two-year renewal. New pharmacists obtaining license by examination or score transfer in Iowa shall be exempt from continuing education requirements for their first license renewal.

Continuing education (CE) programs that carry the seal of the American Council on Pharmaceutical Education (ACPE) approved provider will automatically qualify for Iowa pharmacist CE credit. Any pharmacist wishing credit for a program offered by a non-ACPE approved sponsor must submit an application to the Iowa Board of Pharmacy Examiners before attendance at such program. Application forms are available from the Board office.

At least 15 contact hours of the required 30 hours of pharmacist CE shall be in ACPE-approved courses dealing with drug therapy topics including, but not limited to: adverse drug reactions, biotechnology, clinical monitoring and drug utilization review, disease state, drug delivery systems, drug information, drug interactions, drug product selection, drugs, medical compliance, new drugs, nuclear pharmacy, OTC therapeutics, pharmacology, pharmacokinetics, substance abuse, and general therapeutics. Pharmacists shall retain in their personal files for a minimum of four years all program certificates and approved alternate evidence of successful completion and participation in CE programs.

A pharmacist currently enrolled in health-related graduate studies may apply for exemption from continuing education requirements during the period of that enrollment. Application forms are available from the Board office. Exemption may be prorated based on the period of enrollment and the license renewal period. Applications for exemption from CE requirements should be completed as soon as possible following enrollment in the graduate program. Applications for exemption submitted with license renewal applications may delay the renewal processes beyond license expiration. For more information and forms, see Exemption Application.

Certified Pharmacy Technician CE Requirements

Recertification (renewal of your PTCB certification) is required every two (2) years. To recertify, you must earn a minimum of twenty (20) contact hours of continuing education in pharmacy-related topics. At least one (1) of the twenty (20) hours must be in pharmacy law. American Council on Pharmaceutical Education (ACPE) accreditation is not mandatory for attended programs for pharmacy technicians to receive continuing education credit.

You may earn a maximum ten (10) of the twenty (20) hours at your workplace under the direct supervision of the pharmacist(s). However, these credits may not be earned by working ten (10) hours at your regular duties. You should arrange with your supervising pharmacist for the completion of special assigned in-service projects or training. These assignments should be selected with your individual needs in mind and may include computer training, inventory control, IV admixtures, videos, self-study articles from professional pharmacy journals, etc.

Your supervising pharmacist records these in-service hours on the PTCB Universal Continuing Education Form. All other continuing education courses should award their own Certificate of Participation. A PTCB Universal Continuing Education Form should not be completed for those courses that issue a Certificate of Participation. Each time the PTCB Universal Continuing Education Form is used, the program is considered an in-service project.

Please note: You must earn all continuing education hours within the two-year (2) certification period, on or before your expiration date. You may not use the 90-day late fee extension period to complete your continuing education hours. No continuing education hours earned before passing the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board Examination may be used for recertification; extra hours earned during any two-year (2) certification period may not be carried over and applied to the next certification period requirements. You must maintain your own records of continuing education during your two year (2) certification period. Do not send them to PTCB, unless you are audited.

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