Getting Your License/Certification

How to Get a Pharmacy Tech License

Pharmacy Technicians generally need to fulfill some requirement(s) that vary from state to state in order to work. To learn the requirements and the contact information for the agency that handles pharmacy tech licensing in the state of your choice, visit this clickable list of states.

Genesis Career College offers board-certified Pharmacy Tech programs at Tennessee campuses in Cookeville and Nashville. Since many of our graduates seek work as pharmacy techs in Tennessee, let’s look at how to get a pharmacy technician license in Tennessee as a detailed example—this will give you an idea of how the process works in most states:

pharmacy-tech-gridHow to get a pharmacy technician license in Tennessee involves simply registering with the Tennessee Board of Pharmacy. That is, to work as a pharmacy tech in Tennessee, you must be registered, but there is no requirement that you:

  • hold one of the two available professional certifications
  • pass an exam
  • graduate from a board-approved pharmacy tech program

The Tennessee Board of Pharmacy’s pharmacy tech registration information page is here, and they spell out the registration procedure nicely in this document: Applying for Pharmacy Technician Registration (Understanding the Licensure Process).

As detailed in the document, the registration process includes submitting a completed application that includes:

  • a criminal background check
  • a notarized Declaration of Citizenship form

The registration fee is $75 plus $10 for a state regulatory fee. The independent criminal background check vendor charges $42 for their service.

It takes approximately eight weeks for the registration to be confirmed.

Voluntary Certification

Graduating from the Genesis Career College Pharmacy Tech program (or any other certified program) qualifies you to take either of the two national tests for pharmacy technician certification:

These tests are not required by the state of Tennessee for example, however passing them and becoming certified improves your chances of getting a good job and might improve your salary.

Here are details on the two certification exams available to pharmacy tech program graduates:

  • The Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam (PTCE) is administered by the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB). The fee for the application and exam is $129. The PTCE certification needs to be renewed every two years, and includes a requirement for 20 hours of continued education over those two years. Recertification fees are $50. To take your PTCE exam, first apply to the PTCB for certification – candidates who successfully apply will be authorized to schedule an exam appointment. In Tennessee, PTCE testing centers are located in Brentwood, Nashville, Chattanooga, Bowling Green and Knoxville, Tennessee.
  • The other exam, offered by the National Healthcare Association (NHA), is called the Pharmacy Technician Certification (CPhT).

If you decide to pursue certification or decide against it for the time being, proceed with registering with the State of Tennessee as a pharmacy technician (see instructions above) so you are qualified to work sooner than later. In some states, you may wish to re-apply with the state after receiving certification, since you may become licensed or registered as a “certified” pharmacy technician.

You can do it! Good luck!

Questions? Need assistance? Contact the Tennessee Board of Pharmacy at 615-741-2718.

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