Surgical Tech Schools
Find Surgical Tech Schools
Becoming a surgical tech starts with getting formal training and education in an accredited surgical tech degree program. Most surgical technician programs last between 9 to 12 months and will prepare you for surgical tech certification. It is best to start by requesting information from schools and learn about the specifics of each program to determine which one is most aligned with your specific career goals and your scheduling needs. Take the first step and find surgical tech schools now.
Surgical Tech Job Description
Surgical tech's, sometimes referred to as "scrubs" assist during surgical procedures and are an integral part of the team during a variety of operations. The following are some of the job duties expected of a surgical tech:
- Preparation for the operation setting up equipment such as drapes, sterile solutions, scalpels, and other tools that will be used for the specific procedure.
- Testing of equipment to ensure all is in working order so there will be no surprises that will interrupt the procedure.
- Preparation of patients including disinfecting, shaving, and preparing the area of the body that will be operated on
- During the procedure, surgical tech's monitor vital signs and assist the team with sterile garments, gowns, and gloves.
- Passing instruments as instructed by surgeons and surgical assistants.
- Assist with retractors, sutures, needles, sponges, and a variety of supplies used during procedures
- Adjust lighting, diagnostic equipment, and suction machines.
- Post operation procedures include transporting patients to recovery areas, cleaning and disposing of materials, restocking, and resterilizing the operating room.
What is a circulating technologist?
This is the person on the surgery team who interviews the patient before the procedure and prepares them for operation. They assist with anesthesia, obtains sterile equipment to be opened and handled by the rest of team who are designated as "sterile". They keep a documented account of the procedure and assists the surgeon with any questions about the specific patient information during the surgery.
Would I be a good fit as a surgical tech?
Surgical tech's must be alert and responsive to the needs of the surgeon during procedures as every second is important. Accuracy and efficiency are key characteristics that are necessary for those seeking positions as surgical tech's. Anyone who is disturbed by the appearance of blood or witnessing a surgical procedure should consider pursuing a different role among the allied health professions that do not involve physically graphic situations. Being a surgical tech is not for the "faint of heart" or for those who are not quick on their feet and detailed oriented. However, those that enjoy a fast paced work environment and high pressure environments stimulating will find the job of a surgical tech highly stimulating and rewarding.
Surgical Tech Certification
Most employers seek out individuals who have completed certification through the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA) and become designated as a Certified Surgical Technologist (CST) or through the National Center for Competency Testing (NCCT) and become designated as a Tech in Surgery - Certified (TS-C).
Becoming a Certified First Assistant Surgical Tech
Some surgical tech's go on to get an advanced certification through the NBSTSA and become a Certified First Assistant (CFA). The American College of Surgeons states that a surgical first assistant provides assistance in exposure, controlling blood flow (hemostasis), and additional technical duties to help the surgeon carry out a safe procedure. Getting started with the initial CST or TS-C certification is highly recommended as it will make you a more desirable job applicant and will ensure a higher salary than those not certified.
Surgical Tech Salary
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*data from US Bureau of Labor Statistics
Surgical Tech salary can vary greatly depending upon your level of certification, experience, geographic region, and the type of facility you work in. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, those working in specialty positions such as with plastic surgeons were among the highest paid followed by other outpatient centers and hospitals. Those who are designated as First Assistants make more than those who have lower level certifications or who are not certified.
Surgical Tech Degree Requirements
In order to be eligible for certification, you will need to earn an associates degree or certificate through hospital training, long term experience, or by completing an accredited surgical tech degree program. You will need to enroll in a program that is CAAHEP (Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education) or ABHES (Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools) accredited. Most surgical tech degree programs take between nine months to two years to complete and should prepare you for the certification exam.
Surgical Tech Schools
Check below to find a list of surgical tech schools listed by state. Contact schools near you.