The Pros and Cons of a Career in Surgical Technology

When thinking about a career as a surgical technologist, you need to know that these people are well-trained healthcare professionals that work in and around the operating room and have to be educated and skilled enough to be able to successfully perform this job.

Their duties include preparing patients, sterilizing equipment, setting up procedures, and doing anything else that will help surgeries go safely.

This is definitely both a rewarding, stable career, as well as demanding and responsible.

Pro: Growth in Jobs is Strong

There are both reasons for and against this career.

The best benefit and the most important factor of getting into a career are that surgical technologist job growth is strong.

These health professionals are in demand, and hospitals, medical centers, outpatient surgery centers, and physician offices all need to have trained and qualified surgical techs.

The growth in surgical technology jobs, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics is expected to be around 9 percent, which is faster than average job growth.

This means thousands of new positions in the next ten years.

Pro: Enjoy a Good Salary as a Surgical Tech

Another important factor that makes people decide on a certain career field is the salary and the median wage for surgical technologists in the U.S. is around $23.22 per hour or $48,300 per year.

Those who manage to earn the highest wages in the field can make $71,400 per year.

Due to great opportunities to earn a good living as a surgical tech, and to enjoy benefits like health care in full-time positions are all reasons good enough to start considering enrolling in surgical tech programs.

Pro: Minimal Education Requirements

When we consider healthcare careers, the majority of them require quite a lot of time devoted to education and surgical technology is one of those healthcare careers that does not require a four-year degree.

There are no set requirements for education or training, but most employers would require that a candidate for a surgical tech position has completed a one-year certificate or two-year associate degree program.

You can also choose to become a certified surgical technologist and get an advantage over other job candidates.

The National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting offers certification, but it can be achieved only if you complete an appropriate educational program and then pass the examination.

Con: The Work is Physically Demanding

Among all the reasons for this career, there is one downside that you may find.

Actually, this career can be exhausting, having in mind the fact that surgical techs are on their feet during their shifts, they need to move things around to prepare for surgery, stand still during operation, wait and listen for the surgeon’s instructions.

They also need to lift heavy equipment sometimes.

Con: Hours Can Be Long and Include On-Call Time

Another reason that may affect your decision is that surgical techs do not have exactly determined working hours.

Having in mind that surgeries go on day and night, and depending on where you work you may need to be on-call or working night shifts and weekends.

Most surgical techs work full time, and this includes long shifts, of 12 hours or more, a few days a week.

Pro: Surgical Technologists Have Room for Advancement

In case you are well trained in surgical technology and you gain the significant experience of working in an operating room alongside doctors and nurses, you will get into a position to advance in your healthcare career.

This means that you can train to become a surgical first assistant, or you can enroll in programs and earn credits toward becoming a nurse.

Pro: Making a Difference for People Every Day

Last but not least, we have to mention the fact that surgical technologists are of great benefit to people.

They have the ability to work with people and make surgeries safer for patients, saving their lives all the time.

As a surgical tech, you will prepare patients for surgery and help them feel better about going in for a procedure.

It is true that you will be responsible for making sure the environment and equipment are sterile, but knowing that you take part in saving someone’s life can make your work rewarding and meaningful.

Pros and Cons of Being a Surgical Technologist Summary Table

Pros of Being a Surgical TechnologistCons of Being a Surgical Technologist
Growth in Jobs is StrongThe Work is Physically Demanding
Enjoy a Good Salary as a Surgical TechHours Can Be Long and Include On-Call Time
Minimal Education Requirements
Surgical Technologists Have Room for Advancement
Making a Difference for People Every Day

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