Continuing Education for Pharmacists
All pharmacists must complete 15 hours of approved continuing education (CE) every year. The Virginia Board of Pharmacy (the Board) does not allow any extra hours to be carried over to the next year. As part of the annual requirement of 15 hours, the Board may require up to two hours of CE in a specific subject area. If the Board designates a subject area for CE, it shall publish such a requirement no later than January 1 of the calendar year for which the specific CE is required.
Continuing Education for Pharmacy Technicians
All pharmacy technicians registered in Virginia must obtain at least five hours of approved CE each and every calendar year.
CPE Monitor, the continuing pharmacy education (CPE) tracking service developed by ACPE and the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP), is currently in use (since January 1, 2013). This system allows pharmacists and pharmacy technicians to log into a comprehensive electronic profile to access information about their completed CPE. All ACPE-accredited providers will be required to use this system. CPE Statements of Credit will no longer be mailed.
All continuing education credits provided by the Virginia Pharmacists Association will be uploaded to the CPE Monitor. All CE programs will be uploaded to the CPE Monitor system no later than 30 days after the program date. VPhA will upload all CPE credits to ACPE, which then validates the information before sending it to NABP for the CPE Monitor. After CPE credits are processed by ACPE and NABP, pharmacists and pharmacy technicians are able to log into their NABP e-Profile and view all of their ACPE completed CPE.
In order to process CPE credits, please provide VPhA with your correct NABP e-Profile ID number and your birth month and day (MMDD format). The NABP e-Profile ID number is currently a 6 digit number, and it is not your license number or NPI number. If you need to verify the number or have not yet registered for one, visit www.MyCPEMonitor.net as soon as possible. You can store your NABP e-Profile ID number and your birthdate in your VPhA member record by logging into the VPhA website and clicking on Manage Profile.
CE Questions and Answers
(For a complete Q&A from the Virginia Board of Pharmacy, click here)
Q. I recently graduated from a school of pharmacy in another state and obtained my initial pharmacist license in Virginia via score transfer. Do I need to obtain CE to renew my license for the first time?
A. No. Pharmacists initially licensed by examination, to include via score transfer, are not required to attest to having obtained CE during their first licensure renewal.
Q. I took a course near the end of the year and didn’t get my certificate until the next calendar year. How are the hours applied?
A. CE credit is awarded based on the date the certificate is issued or the date the hours are awarded. Live courses are counted on the date of attending the course.
Q. What should I do if the Board audits me?
A. Whenever the Board contacts you, you should respond promptly. Failure to respond may cause the Board to pursue disciplinary action.
- Find your original certificates and make a copy for yourself, or download a copy of your transcript from NABP CPE Monitor.
- Provide the Board with this transcript.
- Send the original certificates or printed transcript to the Board office by the deadline in the letter.
If you have lost some or all of your certificates, you should immediately contact the respective providers for a replacement certificate and inform the Board of your actions.
Q. May I obtain an extension?
A. Yes. A one-time extension may be possible if the request is made in writing to the Board prior to renewal.
Q. I received my pharmacist license from Virginia in November. When will I need to renew my license for the first time?
A. A pharmacist who is newly licensed on or after October 1 shall not be required to renew that license until December 31 of the following year. All pharmacists registered in Virginia must have completed a minimum of 1.5 CE units (CEUs) or 15 contact hours of continuing pharmacy education for each annual renewal of licensure. Therefore, the pharmacist must obtain 1.5 CEUs or 15 contact hours of CE between the date of the issuance of the Virginia pharmacist license and December 31 of the following year.
Q. I received my pharmacy technician registration from Virginia in August. When will I need to renew my registration for the first time, and how do I comply with the CE requirement?
A. A pharmacy technician newly registered on or after July 1 shall not be required to renew that registration until December 31 of the following year. All pharmacy technicians registered in Virginia must complete a minimum of 0.5 CEUs or five contact hours of CE for each annual registration renewal. Therefore, the pharmacy technician must obtain 0.5 CEUs or five contact hours of CE between the date of the issuance of the Virginia pharmacy technician registration and December 31 of the following year.
Q. What is the benefit of having an inactive license?
A. If a pharmacist does not plan to practice pharmacy in Virginia, taking inactive status will cost less in renewal fees, and the pharmacist does not have to obtain 15 hours of CE each year.
Q. What should I do if I want to reactivate my inactive license?
A. The pharmacist will need pay the difference between the active and inactive fee and obtain the amount of CE that would have been required during that time period, up to a maximum of 60 hours total.
Q. I have been inactive for more than five years and would like to reactivate my license.
A. The pharmacist who has been inactive for more than five years must take and pass the Virginia pharmacy law examination again. If he/she cannot provide documentation that he/she has been practicing in another jurisdiction, the pharmacist must also complete 160 hours of work as a pharmacy intern to be eligible to reactivate his/her license.