BPS Announces Pilot Continuing Professional Development-Recertification Framework to Begin in 2024

Washington, D.C. – The Board of Pharmacy Specialties (BPS) has approved a pilot for a continuing professional development (CPD) component within the existing pathways for recertification of pharmacist specialty certification. The updated recertification framework promotes the principles of lifelong learning and expands professional development options for board-certified pharmacists. The integration of CPD into recertification requirements will begin January 1, 2024.


The pilot CPD-recertification framework aligns with the continuous quality improvement approach BPS offers board-certified pharmacists and other stakeholders. Throughout its history, BPS has utilized components of CPD including self-selected continuing pharmacy education (CPE) in specialty areas for which an approved professional development program did not exist (e.g., Nutrition Support Pharmacy, Solid Organ Transplantation Pharmacy).


“BPS is one of the first U.S.-based pharmacy organizations to establish CPD activities as part of the recertification of BPS board-certified pharmacists who practice in more than 50 countries around the globe,” said 2023 BPS Board of Directors Chair Ruth E. Nemire, PharmD, EdD, FCCP, FNAP, CRQM. “This decision supports recent efforts by U.S. and international pharmacy organizations to promote the fundamental and ethical obligation of pharmacists to maintain competence throughout their careers and further demonstrates the BPS commitment to lifelong learning.”


Under the pilot CPD-recertification framework, board-certified pharmacists must earn 20 units through CPD activities over their seven-year recertification cycle. If recertifying by professional development program (i.e., continuing pharmacy education), at least 80 units of assessed CPE from BPS-approved professional development programs must be completed in addition to up to 20 CPD units for a total of 100 units completed by the recertification deadline. If recertifying by recertification examination, a passing score must be achieved in addition to 20 CPD units by the recertification deadline. Pilot CPD activities will be organized in the following seven categories.

  • Assessed CPE from BPS-approved professional development programs
  • CPE and CPD portfolios
  • Academic, Professional, and Interprofessional Study
  • Teaching and Precepting Learners
  • Scholarly Activities
  • Workplace Activities
  • Leadership and Professional Service


“The integration of CPD activities complements the well-established, well-respected, well-recognized BPS recertification program by bridging self-directed, ongoing, outcomes-focused learning and the application to specialty practice,” said BPS Executive Director, William Ellis, MS, RPh, ICE-CCP.


The new recertification framework will begin with pharmacists who start a new recertification cycle in 2024. Pharmacists certified in 2023, or finishing a recertification cycle in 2023, will be the first cohort. The framework will then be applied each year until it is applicable to all board-certified pharmacists in 2030. The timeline for implementation of the pilot CPD-recertification framework aligns with the request for proposals to provide professional development program(s) and associated updates, which was announced in April 2022.


BPS will transition from the term “hours” to “units” for recertification. In most instances, one hour of BPS approved, assessed continuing pharmacy education will equate to one unit. Additional information about the number of units awarded for specific CPD activities is forthcoming.


BPS will continue to communicate further details with board-certified pharmacists and other stakeholders as the pilot CPD-recertification framework is implemented in 2024 and onward.


Questions and comments should be submitted through this form. For more information and responses to frequently asked questions, visit this page.


About the Board of Pharmacy Specialties

The Board of Pharmacy Specialties (BPS) was established in 1976 as an autonomous division of the American Pharmacists Association (APhA). The mission of BPS is to improve patient care by positioning BPS Board-Certified Pharmacist Specialists as integral members of multidisciplinary healthcare teams, through recognition and promotion of specialized training, knowledge, and skills for pharmacists in the United States and internationally. Board certification is a recognized credential for determining which pharmacists are qualified to contribute at advanced practice levels given the rigorous standards mandated by BPS board certification and recertification. BPS has currently issued more than 57,600 certifications held by pharmacists across 14 specialties.


BPS Media Contact
Alexander Jean-Baptiste
Senior Manager, Social Media & Content Marketing 
(202) 760-3836

Share this page