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PTCB C.R.E.S.T. Summit Supports Continued Innovation in Pharmacy

by Megan Coder | Mar 11, 2011

Consensus is clear, now is the time for change

WASHINGTON, DC. - On February 17–18, 2011, the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB), hosted the C.R.E.S.T. Summit in Palm Beach, FL. PTCB is the national leader in pharmacy technician certification, with over 400,000 pharmacy technicians nationwide having earned the PTCB Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT) credential since 1995.

This groundbreaking event focused on the areas of Consumer Awareness, Resources, Education, State Policy, and Testing. The Summit was attended by thought leaders in the profession, including pharmacists, CPhTs, educators, major employers, state and national pharmacy associations, and state boards of pharmacy.

The Joint Commission of Pharmacy Practitioners Vision Statement for 2015 states that "Pharmacists will be the health care professionals responsible for providing patient care that ensures optimal medication therapy outcomes." Summit participants discussed the role that pharmacy technicians play in helping to make this vision a reality by being an integral member of the pharmacy team.

PTCB conducted a weeklong online survey addressing Summit topics. Over 12,000 responses were collected from individuals working in a wide variety of practice settings, including community, health-system, and federal pharmacy.

"Pharmacy technicians play an integral role in supporting pharmacy practitioners in virtually all practice settings," said Melissa Murer Corrigan, RPh, Executive Director and CEO of PTCB. "Feedback from the Summit, survey, and social media show that significant steps are being taken to support innovation in the roles and responsibilities of pharmacy technicians through education, training, and PTCB certification"

Pharmacy technicians assist pharmacists in dispensing medications and are accountable to the supervising pharmacist who is legally responsible through state licensure for the safety of patients served by the pharmacy.

"With the growing complexity of medications and focus on medication safety, technicians play an essential role in the medication use process," said Summit participant Rita Shane, PharmD, the Director of Pharmacy Services at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, CA. "Opportunities are increasing for pharmacy technicians to progress through career ladders where they can develop knowledge and skills and specialize in areas such as compliance, medication use technology, and informatics."

Summit proceedings and survey results will be used to guide the development of future pharmacy technician resources and developments in certification. Outcomes of the Summit are expected to be published by PTCB later this year.