WASHINGTON — As more pharmacies deliver COVID-19 vaccines across the US, the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) launches its new Assessment-Based Certificate in Immunization Administration, and is accepting applications now. The credential demonstrates a Certified Pharmacy Technician’s (CPhT’s) qualification to safely deliver immunizations and manage related tasks, including preparation, documentation, storage, and disposal.
“Pharmacy technicians are a critical component of the health care workforce that is administering and managing COVID-19 vaccines,” said PTCB executive director and CEO William Schimmel. “PTCB’s Immunization Administration Certificate distinguishes the technicians who demonstrate knowledge and skill in vaccine delivery and their commitment to serving patients and communities during this health crisis.”
Candidates must complete a PTCB-Recognized Immunization Administration Education/Training Program to earn eligibility to take the assessment. These programs require live demonstration of successful hands-on technique when administering an intramuscular and subcutaneous injection. In addition to documenting safe immunization delivery to patients, the certificate signifies knowledge and skills in immunization schedules, storage of doses, management of personal protective equipment, and other areas.
“From drawing up the individual syringes to injecting the vaccine into arms, technicians are proud, excited, and honored to be a part of the interprofessional healthcare team immunizing the public to respond to this crisis,” said Tiffany Kofroth, CPhT, CSPT, Advanced Pharmacy Technician at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, and a member of PTCB’s Certification Council. “PTCB’s certificate demonstrates our qualifications and commitment to providing safe care.”
“The pharmacy profession must ensure that pharmacy technicians have the training and resources they need to learn and grow,” said Schimmel. “We began developing this program long before the pandemic, and in the midst of COVID-19, it’s even more clear how critical CPhTs are to the delivery of patient care. The newest in PTCB’s suite of credentials, the immunization certificate is a way for CPhTs to advance in their careers and expertise as well as support the nationwide immunization effort.”
Earning the Immunization Administration Certificate takes a CPhT one step closer to becoming a PTCB Advanced Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT-Adv). Active PTCB CPhTs earn their CPhT-Adv credential once they have completed at least four of PTCB’s six certificate programs, or three certificate programs and the Compounded Sterile Preparation Technician® (CSPT®) Certification, and 3 years of work experience.