Your Ultimate Guide to Becoming a Pharmacy Technician in Hawaii

Hawaii pharmacy technician license

Hawaii Pharmacy Technician Requirements

Are you interested in a healthcare career that combines accuracy, organization, and a passion for helping others? Becoming a pharmacy technician in Hawaii could be the ideal path for you. Unlike many other states, Hawaii does not require licensure for pharmacy technicians, allowing you to enter the field more quickly.

This comprehensive guide will walk you through the steps to launch your career as a pharmacy technician in the Aloha State. We’ll cover the essential training and optional certification processes, the diverse work environments available, and tips for thriving in this rewarding role.

Although licensure is not mandatory, it’s important to adhere to the regulations and standards set forth by the Hawaii State Board of Pharmacy. You can find the most up-to-date information on their official website: Professional & Vocational Licensing Division | Board Of Pharmacy – DCCA –

Work Environments for Pharmacy Technicians in Hawaii

Hawaii’s unique blend of urban centers and rural communities offers a diverse range of work environments for pharmacy technicians:

  • Retail Pharmacies: Major chains like CVS, Walgreens, and Longs Drugs, along with independent pharmacies, provide ample opportunities throughout the islands. You’ll interact with patients, dispense medications, handle insurance claims, and manage inventory.
  • Hospital Pharmacies: Hawaii’s hospitals, such as The Queen’s Medical Center and Kapiolani Medical Center for Women & Children, offer fast-paced environments where you’ll prepare and dispense medications for inpatients and outpatients. You might also specialize in areas like sterile compounding or pediatrics.
  • Long-Term Care Facilities: In nursing homes and assisted living facilities across the islands, you’ll play a vital role in medication management for residents, ensuring they receive the correct medications and dosages. Collaboration with nursing staff is essential in this setting.
  • Specialty Pharmacies: Hawaii has specialty pharmacies focusing on areas like compounding and home infusion. These settings require specialized knowledge of complex medications and therapies.

Whether you prefer the hustle and bustle of a city hospital or the tranquility of a rural pharmacy, Hawaii offers diverse settings for pharmacy technicians to thrive and make a difference in patient care.

Step 1: Understanding the Requirements for Pharmacy Technicians in Hawaii

While Hawaii does not require licensure for pharmacy technicians, there are still essential requirements to be aware of:

  • Training: There are no specific training hour requirements in Hawaii. However, in order to perform duties that include mixing drugs with parenteral fluids, Hawaii law requires pharmacy technicians display certain competencies. In order to meet those competencies, training should cover various topics, including:
    • Pharmaceutical medical terms, abbreviations, and symbols
    • Arithmetic calculations for dosage determination and solution preparation
    • Duties and responsibilities of a pharmacy technician
    • Standards of ethics governing pharmacy practice
    • Drug dosages, routes of administration, and dosage forms
    • Procedures for manufacturing, packaging, and labeling drug products
    • Aseptic compounding and parenteral admixture operations (if applicable)
  • Supervision: Pharmacy technicians must work under the immediate supervision of a licensed pharmacist. This means the pharmacist must be physically present and able to oversee and guide the technician’s work.
  • Certification (Optional, but Highly Recommended): Although not mandatory, obtaining national certification from the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) or another recognized organization is highly recommended. Certification validates your skills and knowledge and can open doors to better job opportunities and higher salaries.

By completing the necessary training and considering certification, you can establish a strong foundation for your career as a pharmacy technician in Hawaii.

Step 2: Obtaining National Pharmacy Technician Certification (Optional)

While not required by the state to practice, becoming a Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT) in Hawaii offers numerous advantages, including:

  • Higher Earning Potential: CPhTs often command higher salaries due to their advanced knowledge and skills.
  • Enhanced Job Prospects: Employers often prefer to hire certified technicians, making it easier to secure employment.
  • Validated Competency: The CPhT credential indicates that the technician has demonstrated they possess the knowledge required of a certified pharmacy technician. This demonstrates to employers and peers alike that the technician is proficient in knowledge and has invested in their profession and future.

Certification Process:

To become a CPhT in Hawaii, you must obtain certification from the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB). The PTCB certification process involves the following steps:

  1. Complete a PTCB-recognized training program OR gain 500 hours of practical experience as a pharmacy technician
  2. Pass the PTCB exam: Once you’ve completed the training or gained the experience, you’ll need to register for and pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam (PTCE).
  3. Maintain Certification: To maintain your CPhT status, you’ll need to complete continuing education (CE) requirements and renew your certification every two years.

By pursuing and maintaining national certification, you demonstrate your commitment to the profession and position yourself for greater success as a pharmacy technician in Hawaii.

Step 3: Maintaining Your National Pharmacy Technician Certification (if applicable)

Once you’ve earned your national certification, it’s crucial to keep it current to demonstrate your ongoing competence and professionalism. While Hawaii does not have specific requirements for maintaining your certification, the PTCB does. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Renewal: Every two years.
  • Requirements: Complete 20 hours of continuing education (CE), including one hour of patient safety and one hour of pharmacy law.
  • Fees: Pay the recertification fee.

Remember, maintaining your certification is an investment in your career. It demonstrates your dedication to staying up-to-date with the latest advancements in pharmacy practice and your commitment to providing safe and effective patient care.

Additional Tips for Success as a Pharmacy Technician in Hawaii

While formal licensure might not be required in Hawaii, excelling as a pharmacy technician involves more than just meeting the basic requirements. Here are some additional tips to help you thrive in your career:

  • Embrace Aloha Spirit: In Hawaii, the spirit of aloha is more than just a greeting; it’s a way of life. Cultivate a positive attitude, be kind and compassionate towards patients and colleagues, and embody the warmth and hospitality that Hawaii is known for.
  • Cultural Sensitivity: Hawaii is a melting pot of cultures, so being culturally sensitive is crucial for effective communication and building rapport with patients from diverse backgrounds. Learn about the different cultures present in Hawaii and adapt your communication style accordingly.
  • Network with the Pharmacy Community: Connect with other pharmacy technicians and pharmacists in Hawaii through professional organizations like the Hawaii Pharmacists Association (HPhA). Networking can lead to job opportunities, mentorship, and valuable insights into the field.
  • Pursue Advancement Opportunities: As you gain experience, look for opportunities to specialize in areas like sterile compounding or medication therapy management. Consider pursuing advanced certifications or even a degree in pharmacy if you aspire to become a pharmacist.
  • Stay Informed: Keep abreast of the latest developments in pharmacy practice, including new medications, regulations, and technology. This will demonstrate your commitment to continuous learning and professional growth.
  • Volunteer Your Skills: Contribute to your community by volunteering at health fairs or community pharmacies. This is a great way to gain experience, network with professionals, and give back to the community.

By following these tips and embracing the unique aspects of working in Hawaii, you can build a successful and fulfilling career as a pharmacy technician in the Aloha State.


Embarking on a career as a pharmacy technician in Hawaii offers a unique opportunity to blend your passion for healthcare with the beauty and culture of the Aloha State. While Hawaii doesn’t require a license, investing in your training and pursuing national certification can open doors to greater responsibility, higher earning potential, and a more fulfilling career.

With diverse work settings, from bustling retail pharmacies to specialized hospital environments, you can find your niche and make a meaningful contribution to the health and well-being of Hawaii’s residents. By embracing the spirit of aloha, staying informed about industry advancements, and actively seeking growth opportunities, you can build a thriving career as a pharmacy technician in this beautiful state. Take the first step today and begin your rewarding journey as a pharmacy technician in the heart of the Pacific!


1. What are the requirements to become a pharmacy technician in Hawaii?

Hawaii does not require a license for pharmacy technicians. However, you must undergo on-the-job training under the direct supervision of a licensed pharmacist. This training covers essential knowledge and skills for pharmacy practice.

2. Is certification required to work as a pharmacy technician in Hawaii?

While certification is not mandatory, obtaining national certification from the PTCB or another recognized organization is highly recommended. It demonstrates your competence and can lead to better job opportunities and higher salaries.

3. What is the average salary for a pharmacy technician in Hawaii?

Salaries for pharmacy technicians in Hawaii vary depending on experience, certification, and work setting. However, the average salary is around $44,260 per year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics as of May 2023.

4. How do I find pharmacy technician jobs in Hawaii?

You can search for pharmacy technician jobs in Hawaii on online job boards, through professional networking platforms like LinkedIn, or by contacting pharmacies and healthcare facilities directly. Some hospitals and healthcare systems in Hawaii have their own job boards where you can find pharmacy technician openings.

5. What are the continuing education requirements for pharmacy technicians in Hawaii?

Hawaii does not have specific continuing education requirements for pharmacy technicians. However, if you are nationally certified, you will need to fulfill the CE requirements of your certifying organization to maintain your certification.

6. Where can I find more information about becoming a pharmacy technician in Hawaii?

The official Hawaii State Board of Pharmacy website (Professional & Vocational Licensing Division | Board Of Pharmacy – DCCA – provides information on pharmacy regulations and frequently asked questions. You can also contact the Board directly for any specific inquiries.

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