September 19 – 25, 2021 is National Surgical Technologists Week! In honor of the profession and its vital role in ensuring safe operating rooms, let’s “unlock” what it takes to become a surgical technologist.
What is a surgical technologist?
A surgical technologist, also known as a surgical assistant, scrub technologist, or operating room technician, is a health professional whose primary function is preparing an operating room for a patient’s surgery.
Surgical technologists work alongside surgeons, nurses, and anesthesiologists to deliver care before, during, and occasionally after surgery. They are responsible for setting up the operating room, arranging necessary equipment, and even assisting physicians, according to WebMD.
What do surgical technologists do?
Surgical technologists’ duties before an operation include
- Testing and setting up surgical instruments
- Gathering and preparing sterile solutions or medications as requested by the surgical team
- Transporting patients to the operating room and ensuring they are comfortable prior to beginning surgical procedures
During the operation, a surgical technologist might assist with
- Cleaning and disinfecting any incision sites
- Supplying the surgeon with sterilized instruments
- Holding organs in place
After the operation, a surgical technologist can assist with
- Patient aftercare
- Transporting patients to recovery rooms
- Restocking the operating room
What are the necessary educations, skills, and training?
Surgical technology programs are designed to provide aspiring surgical techs with the knowledge and skills needed to succeed in the profession. These programs generally last from anywhere between six months to two years.
According to WebMD, the process to becoming a surgical tech involves
- Taking classes in the sciences and learning about patient safety, infection prevention, and surgical equipment
- Earning a diploma, certificate, or associate degree from an accredited surgical technology program
- Taking part in supervised surgical technology clinicals
What is the current job outlook for surgical technologists?
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that employment of surgical technologists will grow by about 9 percent in the next decade.
As of May 2020, the median pay for a surgical technologist was nearly $50,000.
Who can I talk to if I am interested in joining a surgical tech team?
Great question! Reach out to Green Key Healthcare for the latest insights about surgical technologists and other hot jobs in healthcare. Our team is committed to connecting current and future healthcare professionals with their dream roles.