Sterile Processing Technician Schools in Montana – Find Programs
Sterile processing technicians are crucial to the smooth running of healthcare facilities. They process, store, and distribute surgical instruments used throughout clinics and hospitals. They have the knowledge and apply infection control and sterilization principles needed to maintain a sterile and safe environment.
A sterile setting plays a vital part in controlling infections among patients by making sure that instruments, spaces, and surfaces won’t transmit infection. There is an ever-growing call for capable sterile processing technicians in the US, and Montana is no exception.
Only Connecticut, New Jersey, New York, and Tennessee have specified certification and registration guidelines for sterile processing technicians. Montana and the other states rely on using national certification from established bodies to source candidates. Healthcare Sterile Processing Association (HSPA) certification is a prime example.
What Do You Need to Find Employment as a Sterile Processing Technician in Montana?
For a career as a sterile processing technician in Montana, it’s best to complete a certification through the Healthcare Sterile Processing Association. The Certified Registered Central Service Technician (CRCST) certification assists in securing employment within the state. It is also the most acknowledged national credential in the field.
To place yourself in a position to sit the national CRCST examination successfully, it is recommended that you attend a sterile processing technician program. These programs are offered at several sterile processing technician schools in Montana.
A sterile processing technician program will likely need candidates to have a high school or a GED. You would also have to be at least 18 years old to enroll and be healthy, with current vaccination records. It is possible that you would have to commit to a criminal background check and a drug screen as well.
Healthcare Sterile Processing Association Exam
The HSPA examination is detailed. 400 hours of practical training are needed before the exam or within six months after completion to become fully certified.
This practical training incorporates a compulsory number of hours in specific parts of the sterile processing technician role. It can also be started prior to sitting for the CRCST exam.
Specific programs and hands-on practical training at healthcare companies are the most likely means of completing these. You are required to complete the prescribed hours in each of the following:
- Decontamination procedures – 120 hours
- Disinfection and sterilization – 96 hours
- Instrument packaging and preparation – 120 hours
- Quality assurance procedures – 24 hours
- Storage and distribution – 24 hours
- Surgical and medical equipment – 16 hours
You will sit for the HSPA certification exam at a specialized testing center, at a cost of $125. Some sterile processing technician schools in Montana may include this cost in their program fee and carry out registration for the national examination on your behalf.
After getting certified as a sterile processing technician, you may also want to consider other certifications to further enhance your career prospects. The HSPA caters to these as well.
Sterile Processing Technician Training Programs in Montana
We have included two potential training programs for prospective sterile processing technicians, or central service technicians, within Montana.
Allied Health (Yakima Valley College) Sterile Processing Technician Certificate
The Allied Health, Yakima Valley College Sterile Processing Technician (SPT) Program equips students with skills and knowledge to excel within a material management or sterile processing department at a surgical center or hospital within the healthcare industry.
Upon graduation, students qualify to sit for the Certified Registered Central Service Technician examination.
The SPT program offered at Yakima Valley College can be achieved in two quarters. The course affords students hands-on experience to ready them for any sterile processing technician jobs they might apply for.
Allied Health accepts ten applications at Yakima Valley College every year in the Fall. Your educational experience is hence personalized and targeted.
What the program offers
- The Sterile Processing Technician Certificate – 19 credits.
- Comprehensive training in the processing and maintenance of surgical instruments and devices, patient care equipment, and other medical equipment.
- Online instruction, with practical and laboratory training at the Yakima campus.
- A 400-hour clinical externship, which is the full HSPA requirement.
- The opportunity to move into your career in only half a year.
- Opportunity grants pending successful application.
- An introduction to a career with average earnings of over $40,000 per annum.
- Qualification to sit for the national HSPA certification examination.
University of Montana
This interactive course offered by Missoula College at the University of Montana prepares candidates for the HSPA’s Certified Registered Central Service Technician (CRCST) certification. It provides a solid basis for any successful students to apply for sterile processing technician jobs within Montana and beyond.
What the program offers
- Full introductory fundamentals of the sterile processing technician role within the healthcare environment.
- Insights and education on medical terminology, as well as infection control and sterilization of medical and surgical instrumentation.
- Medical inventory management, surgical technology, and equipment maintenance for an operating room environment and other departments.
- Education on the existing processes within hospitals, and surgery centers. Specific attention is given to operating rooms.
- Participation in unpaid clinical hands-on training which counts toward the mandatory 400-hour HSPA practical requirement.
- Potential opportunities for grants and vouchers.
- Education toward and qualification to write the national HSPA certification exam.
Where To Find Work As a Sterile Processing Technician in Montana?
Sterile processing technicians can often find employment in Maine at:
- A central sterile processing department
- Dentist practices
- Oral surgeon practices
- Surgery centers
- Medical companies
- Private physician’s practices
- Outpatient surgical centers
What are my career prospects as a sterile processing technician in Montana?
The job outlook for sterile processing technicians in Montana is better than in many other US states. According to the Montana Department of Labor and Industry, SPT employment should grow by over 14% between 2018 and 2028.
What is the average salary for a sterile processing technician in Montana?
According to US Bureau of Labor Statistics data, the average annual salary for an SPT in Montana is $41,710.