How To Become A Pharmacy Technician In Montana

To become a pharmacy technician in Montana, follow these steps:

  1. Age and Education: Be at least 18 years old with a high school diploma or GED.
  2. Background Check: Complete a criminal background check, including fingerprints.
  3. Certification: Pass the PTCB or ExCPT exam or obtain a pharmacy technician in-training permit.
  4. Application: Apply to the Montana State Board of Pharmacy and pay a $50 fee.
  5. Continuing Education: Complete 20 hours of CE every two years, including 1 hour in pharmacy law and 1 hour in patient safety.

Pharmacy Technicians in Montana must meet specific requirements to ensure they are qualified for their roles. Certification is required, and the state board accepts both the PTCB and ExCPT exams.

Basic Requirements

  1. Age: Candidates must be at least 18 years old.
  2. Education: A high school diploma or GED is required.
  3. Background Check: A criminal background check, including fingerprints, is mandatory.
  4. Application Fee: A non-refundable application fee of $50.00.

Certification and Training

  • Certification: Candidates must pass the PTCB or ExCPT exam. More information can be found on the PTCB website.
  • Training: Candidates not yet certified must apply for a pharmacy technician in-training permit, allowing 18 months to complete certification.

Registration Process

Continuing Education

  • Hours: Pharmacy Technicians must complete at least 20 hours of Continuing Education (CE) every two years.
  • Content: CE must include one hour of pharmacy law and one hour of patient safety.
  • Fee: Renewal fee of $50.00 is required annually.

Average Salary

  • Annual Salary: The average annual salary for Pharmacy Technicians in Montana is approximately $32,330.
  • Hourly Wage: This equates to an average hourly wage of about $15.54.
  • Factors Influencing Salary: Experience, location, and workplace setting can affect earnings.

Job Outlook and Career Advancement

  • Job Growth: Employment for Pharmacy Technicians in Montana is expected to grow, driven by an increasing demand for healthcare services.
  • Career Advancement: Opportunities for advancement include becoming a lead technician, specializing in oncology or compounding, or transitioning to roles such as a Pharmacy Technician Instructor or a Pharmacy Manager.

Training Programs in Montana

Several accredited programs provide the necessary training:

  • Montana State University (Billings)
  • Great Falls College MSU (Great Falls)
  • Flathead Valley Community College (Kalispell)


  • Montana State Board of Pharmacy: For detailed regulations and updates.
  • Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB): For certification information and exam details.
  • American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP): For accredited training programs and continuing education resources.

Meeting Montana’s requirements is essential for pharmacy technicians pursuing a career. Always refer to the Montana State Board of Pharmacy for the latest information and updates.

Career Opportunities and Growth

Emerging Specializations

Pharmacy technicians in Montana can explore specialized roles such as:

  • Medication Therapy Management: Supporting pharmacists in managing complex medication regimens.
  • Telepharmacy: Assisting in remote dispensing and patient counseling services.

Advanced Roles

Technicians can advance to positions such as:

  • Pharmacy Operations Manager: Overseeing pharmacy operations and staff.
  • Compliance Officer: Ensuring adherence to regulatory standards and protocols.

Community Engagement

Health Education Programs

Pharmacy technicians can participate in community outreach by:

  • Organizing Health Workshops: Educating the public on medication safety and wellness.
  • Participating in Health Fairs: Providing screenings and informational resources.

Professional Development

Continuing Education

Staying updated with industry changes through CE programs is crucial. Key resources include:

  • Montana Pharmacy Association (MPA)
  • National Pharmacy Technician Association (NPTA)

Networking Opportunities

Joining professional associations offers benefits such as networking, career advancement, and access to the latest industry trends and educational resources.

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