Pharmacy Technician Registration

Department of Inspections, Appeals, and Licensure


Pharmacy technicians help licensed pharmacists provide medication and other healthcare products to patients. Technicians usually perform routine tasks to help prepare prescribed medication for patients, such as counting tablets and labeling bottles. Pharmacy technicians may also assist the pharmacist by compounding prescription drug products pursuant to the prescription of a qualified health care practitioner. Technicians refer any questions regarding prescriptions, drug information, or health matters to a pharmacist. Certified pharmacy technicians, in limited practice settings, may participate in technician product verification programs where a certified pharmacy technician checks and verifies the work of another certified pharmacy technician with limited pharmacist supervision. Certified pharmacy technicians may also work in remote pharmacy practice settings (telepharmacies), approved by the Board of Pharmacy, where pharmacist supervision is accomplished utilizing technology to oversee and verify the pharmacy technician\\’s activities, including prescription drug dispensing to patients.

Code Citation IC 155A.6A, 155A.33, 155A.33A

Who Applies A person who is or desires to work as a pharmacy technician in Iowa must apply to the Board of Pharmacy for registration. A person enrolled in a college-based pharmacy technician training program must apply for registration. National certification is required within one year of beginning practice or formal training as a pharmacy technician in Iowa.

When To Apply Prior to commencing employment as a pharmacy technician. Registration must be issued before employment as a pharmacy technician begins. Individuals enrolled in a college-based pharmacy technician training program must register prior to beginning on-site practical experience.

Initial Requirements A person who is or desires to work as a pharmacy technician in Iowa must apply to the Board of Pharmacy for registration. A person enrolled in a college-based pharmacy technician training program must also apply for registration. There are no state or federal requirements for formal training of pharmacy technicians at this time. Many pharmacy technicians receive informal on-the-job training. Formal pharmacy technician education programs require classroom and laboratory work in a variety of areas, including medical and pharmaceutical terminology, pharmaceutical calculations, pharmacy recordkeeping, pharmaceutical techniques, and pharmacy law and ethics. Technicians need strong mathematics, spelling, and reading skills. Initial registrations for pharmacy technician trainee are issued for a period of one year following employment or commencement of formal education and training as a pharmacy technician. Within that one-year period, the registrant must take and pass a national certification examination and maintain national certification as a pharmacy technician, in addition to the registration with the Board of Pharmacy, if the individual wants to continue practice as a pharmacy technician in Iowa. Upon attaining national certification, the pharmacy technician trainee must apply to the Board of Pharmacy for registration as a certified pharmacy technician. Both the registration issued by the Board of Pharmacy and the national certification must be maintained during employment and practice as a pharmacy technician in Iowa.

Duration Initial registration as a pharmacy technician trainee expires one year following issuance. Iowa certified pharmacy technician registrations expire on the same date as the national certification, every two years.

Processing Time Fifteen business days following application.

Fee Structure Registration as a pharmacy technician trainee: $20, one-year registration only. Certified Pharmacy Technician Registration, new and renewal: $40 every 2 years Late renewal of a certified technician registration when the registration is renewed within 30 days of expiration requires an additional $40 late fee. A certified pharmacy technician that is not renewed within 30 days of expiration requires a reactivation fee of $160. Certification: Depends on the certifying entity (National) Recertification: Depends on the certifying entity (National) Exam: Depends on the certifying entity (National Certification)

Renewal Requirements There are no continuing education requirements for renewal of the Iowa pharmacy technician registration. Nationally certified pharmacy technicians must complete 20 contact hours of pharmacy-related topics within the two-year certification period to become eligible for recertification. At least one contact hour must be in pharmacy law. Continuing education requirements are established by the certifying entity (National certification) and not by the Board of Pharmacy.

Exam There is no examination requirement for pharmacy technician registration in Iowa. The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) administers the National Pharmacy Technician Certification exam. The National Healthcareer Association administers the EXCPT certification exam. Either examination and certification is recognized by the Iowa Board of Pharmacy for national certification.

Additional Information Renewal of the certified pharmacy technician registration is available online. See the Board of Pharmacy website for additional information regarding online services.

Services Provided

Service Category

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Contact Information
Dakota Waltz
Iowa Board of Pharmacy
400 S.W. 8th Street, Suite E
Des Moines, IA 50309