Surgical technologists are known as heroes of the operating room, due to the fact that they play a critical role in many life-saving surgeries every day
Many people are interested in working in the operating room, but not all of them are ready to become surgeons, so they choose this less demanding career as the right one for them.
Becoming a surgical technologist might be the perfect career match for you, but upon getting a degree, it is expected that you earn a stable salary and we are here to provide you with the necessary data related to it.
What is the average salary for a surgical technologist?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the average annual salary for surgical technologists is $50,110 per year or $24.09 per hour, while the top 10 percent of those most experienced ones earn more than $71,400.
What is the job outlook for surgical technologists?
The BLS projects 7 percent employment growth, meaning that there will be more than 7,000 new jobs.
The employment growth is happening due to the advancements in medical technology, which have continued to make surgery safer and more common as well as due to the aging baby boomer population who require a wide range of healthcare services, including operations.
Hip and knee replacements are common surgeries among older individuals.
What do surgical technologists do?
The typical duties of surgical technologists are to work alongside surgeons and nurses with the aim to ensure that surgical procedures run smoothly.
Surgical techs are an integral part of every aspect of operation and they assist the surgeon during certain parts of a procedure.
Here are the duties that a surgical technician performs during a typical day:
- Set up the operating room. These professionals are in charge of preparing all the needed supplies and instruments for operation, meaning that they are supposed to memorize each surgical procedure and what tools are needed for a specific one as the surgeon will need them.
- Sterilize surgical equipment. The majority of surgical technicians are supposed to sterilize all the equipment in the operating room, set up sterile drapes, and to make sure that the surgeon and other staff members follow proper aseptic technique so as to minimize the risk of infection after a procedure.
- Prepare the patient. There are also some surgical techs that are called “circulating technologists”. This is due to their job which is to interview and debrief the patient before the procedure. During the surgery, they will assist with anesthesia and open packages for other team members to maintain the sterile field.
- Assist during the surgery. More experienced surgical techs assist the surgeon during the operation by passing instruments, holding retractors, and cutting sutures. Circulating surgical techs will keep a written account of the surgical procedure and answer the surgeon’s questions about the patient during the surgery. The most experienced technologist will be asked to assist with wound closure at the end of a procedure.
- Clean up and prepare for the next procedure. Once the procedure is over, the surgical tech is required to clean the room and all the equipment and begin preparing it for the next operation.
Most surgical techs can find work on operating room teams in hospitals, clinics, and other healthcare facilities.
There are some of them who are in charge of managing central supply departments in hospitals or have positions with insurance companies, sterile supply services, and operating equipment firms.
What skills do I need to be a surgical technologist?
Just like in any other profession, besides having the right knowledge and training, there are additional personal skills that you must possess so as to be successful.
Critical thinking and communication are crucial skills for success in the operating room, as the operating room team will rely on the surgical tech.
They have to demonstrate are the ability to remain calm under pressure and to Actually, the surgical tech is essentially the surgeon’s right hand and he/she must get familiar with everything about a surgical procedure in order to provide adequate support.
How do I become a surgical technologist?
So as to become a surgical technologist, you will need to reach an associate degree in surgical technology.
Upon completion of an associate degree program, you must take the Certified Surgical Technologist (CST) examination offered by The National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting.
Herzing University offers an accredited surgical technologist degree program that prepares you for entry-level positions in the operating room and once you get a degree you become eligible to take the CST examination.
How long does it take to become a surgical technologist?
You can graduate from Herzing’s surgical technologist program in 20 months and you can start looking for entry-level jobs such as:
- Surgical technologist
- Lead surgical technologist
- Travel surgical technologist
- Scrub tech
- Material manager
When you get experience and additional education or training, you can advance by specializing in a particular area, such as neurosurgery or open-heart surgery.