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Following is a list of key words that you should know for each of the major areas listed above. While this is not represented as an exhaustive list of every term you should know, knowing each of these terms and the related concepts help you prepare for the Exam. You may find it helpful to make a list of definitions for words and terminology that may be new to you.


Technician Duties and General Information

Confidentiality                                                                        Food and Drug Administration (FDA)

Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC)                       Over the counter (OTC) drugs

Controlled Substances Act (CSA)                                            Pharmacy security

Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)                                State Board of Pharmacy

                                                                                                Technician duties



Aerosols                                                                                  Chewable tablets

Capsules                                                                                 Controlled-released products

Creams                                                                                    Otic preparations

Dosage forms                                                                          Parenteral medications

Elixirs                                                                                      Reconstituting

Emulsions                                                                                Solutions

Enteric-coated tablets                                                            Sublingual tablets

Gels                                                                                         Suppositories

Lotions                                                                                    Suspensions

Ointments                                                                               Syrups

Ophthalmic preparations                                                        Transdermal patches

Prescription Containers and Closures

Applicator bottles                                                                   Closures

Child-resistant caps                                                                Dropper bottles

Brand-name drugs                                                                  Generic drugs

Dispense as written                                                                Multiple-source drugs

Information on Prescription Stock Bottle Labels

Controlled substance mark                                                     Lot number

Expiration date                                                                        National Drug Code (NDC) number

Prescription-only symbol (Rx)                                                 Stock bottle label

Legend Statement

DEA number                                                                            Schedule IV (C-IV)

Emergency prescriptions                                                        Schedule V (C-V)

Filing prescription forms                                                         Schedule VI (C-VI)

Partial filling                                                                           Schedule V records log

Refilling prescriptions                                                             Storing prescription stock

Schedule I (C-I)                                                                        Transfer warning statement

Schedule II (C-II)                                                                      Transferring medications

Schedule III (C-III)                                                                    Transferring prescriptions

Dentist (DDS or DMD)                                                             Physician (MD)

Nurse practitioner (NP)                                                           Physician assistant (PA)

Optometrist (OD)                                                                    Podiatrist (DPM)

Osteopathic physician (DO)                                                   Veterinarian (DVM)

Facsimile prescriptions                                                           Transferred prescriptions

Oral Prescriptions


Interpreting Directions for Use

aa or āā                                               disp                                         NKA                                         qod

aa                                            DTD                                         noc                                          Rx

ac                                            EC                                            NR                                           

ad                                            el or elix                                  od                                            SA

ad lib                                       expect                                     oj                                             SC, subQ, or SQ

aff                                            fl                                              ophth                                       Sig

AM                                           fl oz                                         os                                            SL

ANX                                         g or gm                                    otic                                          SOB

app                                          gr                                             ou                                            sol

aq                                            gtt(s)                                       oz                                             SR

aq                                            h, hr or º                                  p                                              ss or 

as                                            HA                                           pc                                            stat

ASAP                                        HBP                                         pc & hs                                    supp

au                                            hs                                            ped                                          susp

BC                                            IM                                            PM                                           syr

bid                                           IV                                             po                                            T or tbsp

BP                                            kg                                            pr                                             t or tsp

c or                                                                                L                                              prn                                           tab(s)

cap(s)                                      LA                                            pulv                                         tid

cc                                             loc                                           q                                              tinc

cpd or cmpd                            lot                                            qd                                            TR

cr                                             mcg or μg                                qh                                            UD or ut dict

d                                              mEq                                         q4h                                          ung or oint

DAW                                        mg                                           qhs                                          vag

dis                                           ml                                            qid                                           w or wk

Apothecary system                                                                 Kilogram (kg)

Avoirdupois system                                                                 Liter (L)

Cubic centimeter (cc)                                                              Metric system

Dram (dr or Ȣ)                                                                         Microgram (mcg)

Fluid dram (Ȣ)                                                                         Milligram (mg)

Fluid ounce (fl oz or )                                                            Milliliter (mL)

Gallon (gal)                                                                             Ounce (oz)

Grain (gr)                                                                                 Pint (pt)

Gram (g)                                                                                  Quart (qt)

Household measures

Calls that technicians can handle                                          Calls that technicians cannot handle


Federal Privacy Requirements

Acknowledgement signature                                                  Minimum necessary rule

Covered entity                                                                         Minor

Department of Health and Human Services                           Notice of privacy practices

Electronic signature capture                                                   Privacy officer

Health Insurance Portability and                                            Protected health information

   Accountability Act (HIPAA)                                                 

Automatic counting machines                                                Medication history

Auxiliary labels                                                                       Meniscus

Computer checks                                                                    NDC number

Conical graduate                                                                     Over-the-counter (OTC) medications

Contraindications                                                                    Patient profiles

Counting trays                                                                         Prescription form requirements

Daily log                                                                                  Prescription history

Distilled water                                                                        PRN refills

Drug interactions                                                                    Reconstituting powders

Gelatin capsules                                                                     Reconstituting tube

Graduated cylinder                                                                 Refill regulations

Hypodermic needle and syringe log                                       Schedule V sales record log

Label requirements

Alternative Drug Distribution Systems

24-hour exchange                                                                   Medication cart

7-day exchange                                                                       Patient drawer or tray

Back-up dose                                                                          Punch card

Blister pack                                                                             Repackaging

Compliance aids                                                                     Returning unused medication

Dosage spoon                                                                         Unit-dose system

Dropper                                                                                   USP-NF Class B packaging materials

Long-term care facility (LTCF)                                                USP-NF Class C packaging materials

Lot or control number

Sterile Product Compounding

Ampule                                                                                    High efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter

Aseptic technique                                                                   Horizontal-laminar flow hood

Biological safety cabinet                                                        Intramuscular (IM)

Biomedical waste disposal                                                     Intravenous (IV)

Chemotherapy (cytotoxic drugs)                                             Labeling requirements

Clean room                                                                              Large-volume parenteral

Compounding                                                                          Multiple-dose vial

Dextrose 5% in water (D5W)                                                  Parenteral medications

Diluent                                                                                    Piggyback

Filter needle                                                                            Sterile product risk levels

Route of administration                                                         

Sterile Product Compounding (continued)

Sharps                                                                                     Subcutaneous (SubQ, SQ or SC)

Small-volume parenteral                                                         Total parenteral nutrition (TPN)

Sterile drug products                                                               Vertical laminar-flow hood



Following is a list of selected statutes and regulations that you should know for the Exam.  This should not be considered to be a comprehensive list of all statutes and regulations that you should know as a pharmacy technician. Explanations of these statutes and regulations should be a part of the various Board-approved training programs. In addition, the text for each of these statutes and regulations is available from the Virginia Board of Pharmacy’s website (



18VAC 110-20-170          Required minimum equipment

18VAC 110-20-200BCD   Storage of drugs, devices, and controlled paraphernalia

18VAC 110-20-240          Manner of maintaining record, prescriptions, inventory records

18VAC 110-20-255          Other dispensing records

18VAC 110-20-270          Dispensing of prescriptions, acts restricted to pharmacists; certification of completed prescriptions

18VAC 110-20-275          Delivery of dispensed prescriptions

18VAC 110-20-280          Transmission of a prescription by facsimile machine

18 VAC 110-20-285         Electronic Transmission of prescriptions from prescriber to pharmacy

18VAC 110-20-290          Dispensing of Schedule II drugs

18VAC 110-20-320          Refilling of Schedule III through VI prescriptions

18VAC 110-20-330          Labeling of prescriptions as to content and quantity

18VAC 110-20-350          Special packaging

18VAC 110-20-355          Pharmacy repackaging of drugs; records required; labeling requirements

18VAC 110-20-360          Issuing a copy of a prescription that can be refilled

18VAC 110-20-370          Issuing a copy of a prescription that cannot be refilled

18VAC 110-20-400          Returning of drugs and devices

18VAC 110-20-411-416   Compounding sterile pharmaceutical products


Statutes§ 54.1-2952.1            Prescription of certain controlled substances and devices by physician assistant

§ 54.1-2957.01   Prescription of certain controlled substances and devices by nurse practitioners

§ 54.1-3320        Acts restricted to pharmacists

§ 54.1-3404        Persons required to keep records of drugs; contents and form of record

§ 54.1-3408        Professional use by practitioners

§ 54.1-3408.03   Dispensing of therapeutically equivalent drug products

§ 54.1-3408.01   Requirements for prescriptions

§ 54.1-3410        When pharmacist may sell and dispense drugs

§ 54.1-3410.2     Compounding; pharmacists; authority to compound under certain conditions; labeling and record maintenance requirements

§ 54.1-3411        When prescriptions may be refilled

§ 54.1-3412        Date of dispensing; initials of pharmacist; automated data processing system

§ 54.1-3416        No prescriptions for preparations listed pursuant to Schedule V

§ 54.1-3427        Dispensing drugs without safety closure container

§ 54-1-3467        Distribution of hypodermic needles or syringes, gelatin capsules, quinine or any of its salts


§ 54.1-3468        Conditions to dispense device, item , or substance; records

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