Considering a career in surgical technology? Learn about the education and training requirements, job outlook and potential earnings to see if this is the right career for you.
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Surgical Tech Job Description
If you are considering a career as a surgical technologist, you may be wondering what the job entails and if it is hard to become a surgical tech. Surgical techs are an important part of the surgical team and they play a vital role in ensuring that surgeries are performed safely and effectively.
What do surgical techs do?
A surgical technologist is an integral part of the surgical team. They are responsible for ensuring that the operating room is ready for the procedure, and that all of the necessary equipment is sterile and in working order. They also assist the surgeon during the surgery itself, passing instruments and tools as needed.
After the surgery, they help to clean and close the incisions, and may also apply dressings. Once everything is complete, they transport the patient to the recovery area.
Surgical technologists typically work in hospitals, but may also work in outpatient surgeries or in doctor’s offices. They typically work full time, but may be needed for extra hours or on call as needed.
What are the hours like?
The hours for a surgical tech can be long and varied. The typical workweek is 40 hours, but it may include evenings, weekends, and on-call shifts. In some cases, surgical techs may be required to work overtime.
What is the work environment like?
Most surgical techs work in hospitals, but they may also work in outpatient centers, doctors’ offices, and research facilities. They usually work full time, but some may work evenings or weekends. Many surgical techs are on their feet for long periods of time.
Surgical Tech Training
If you want to become a surgical tech, you will need to complete an accredited surgical technology program. Most of these programs can be completed in about two years. Once you have completed the program, you will need to pass the national certification exam. After that, you will be able to apply for surgical tech jobs.
What kind of training is required?
If you’re interested in becoming a surgical technologist, you’ll need to complete an accredited surgical tech program. These programs are typically offered at community colleges, technical schools, and some hospitals.
Most surgical tech programs take about nine months to complete, although some accelerated programs can be finished in as little as six months. During your training, you’ll learn about infection control, medical ethics, medical terminology, human anatomy, and physiology. You’ll also get hands-on experience in a laboratory setting, as well as clinical rotations in various medical settings.
How long does it take to become a surgical tech?
Becoming a surgical tech typically takes about a year of training, although some programs may last longer. During this time, you’ll learn about sterilization techniques, human anatomy and physiology, and surgical procedures. You’ll also get hands-on experience in a hospital or other medical setting.
Surgical Tech Certification
In order to become a certified surgical tech, you will need to attend an accredited surgical technology program and pass the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA) exam. The exam consists of a written portion and a skills portion. You will also need to have your certification renewed every four years by completing continuing education credits.
What is surgical tech certification?
Surgical tech certification is not required in every state, but most employers prefer to hire certified surgical technologists. Certification shows that you have completed an accredited surgical technology program and have passed a national examination. Surgical technologists who are certified can use the designation “CST” (Certified Surgical Technologist) after their names.
How do I become certified?
The best way to become a certified surgical technologist is to complete an accredited surgical technology program. Many community colleges, technical schools, and universities offer accredited programs, which typically takes about nine months to a year to complete. It is important to make sure that the program you choose is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES).
Once you have completed an accredited program, you will then need to pass the certified surgical technologist (CST) exam administered by the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA). To be eligible to take the CST exam, you must have graduated from an accredited program and completed a minimum of 400 clinical hours. Once you have passed the exam, you will be a certified surgical technologist and can use the CST credential after your name.
While certification is not required in all states, most employers prefer or require certification. In addition, some states may require certification if you want to work in certain specialty areas or be eligible for certain promotions. Even if certification is not required in your state, it is still a good idea to become certified as it can give you an edge in the job market.
Surgical Tech Salary
Wondering if it is hard to become a surgical tech? The answer is that it depends. If you have a passion for helping people and working in the medical field, then becoming a surgical tech may be the perfect career for you. However, it is important to note that surgical techs do not perform surgeries.
How much do surgical techs make?
In 2019, the average annual salary for a surgical technologist was $48,300, or $23.21 per hour, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The bottom 10 percent of earners in this occupation made less than $33,840 while the top 10 percent made more than $68,490.
What are the job prospects for surgical techs?
The job outlook for surgical techs is good. Employment of surgical techs is projected to grow 7 percent from 2019 to 2029, faster than the average for all occupations. The demand for healthcare services is expected to increase as the population ages. Surgical techs will be needed to assist surgeons in performing a variety of inpatient and outpatient surgical procedures.
In addition, the number of surgeries performed each year is expected to grow as newer and less invasive surgical procedures are developed.