What Does a Surgical Tech Do?

A surgical technologist, also called a scrub, scrub tech, operating room technician, or surgical technician, is an allied health professional working as a part of the team delivering surgical care.

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Job Description

A surgical technologist, also called a scrub, scrub tech, surgical technician, or operating room technician, is an allied health professional working as an integral part of the surgical team. The surgical technologist functions under the supervision of a registered nurse or licensed practical nurse and assists the surgical team by preparing the operating room and sterile instruments, equipment and solutions needed for each surgical procedure.

Surgical techs work under the supervision of surgeons

Surgical techs, also called operating room technicians or scrub techs, are an important part of the surgical team. They work under the supervision of surgeons, registered nurses and anesthetists to ensure that operating rooms are clean and that equipment is sterilized.

Techs also transport patients to and from the operating room, set up operating rooms with the necessary equipment and supplies, and assist surgeons during procedures. They must be able to keep calm under pressure and follow instructions quickly and accurately.

They are responsible for preparing the operating room

A surgical technologist, also called a scrub, scrub tech, operating room technician or surgical technician, is an allied health professional who works under the supervision of a licensed nurse and surgeon to ensure that the operating room environment is safe, that equipment functions properly and that instruments and supplies are available when needed.

Most surgical technologists work in hospitals, but some may work in outpatient surgery centers, physicians’ offices or dental offices. Some surgical technologists travel with teams of surgeons who provide medical care in disaster areas or in countries where there is a shortage of surgeons.

Surgical techs also transport patients to and from the operating room

Surgical techs also transport patients to and from the operating room. They may also transport laboratory specimens, arrange laboratory tests and provide administrative support to the surgical team. In some cases, surgical techs may also be responsible for sterilizing equipment and setting up operating rooms.

Duties

A surgical technologist, also called a scrub, scrub tech, surgical technician, or operating room technician, is an allied health professional working as a member of the surgical team. Surgical technologists work under the supervision of a licensed practical nurse or registered nurse. They prepare operating rooms, arrange equipment, and help surgeons during procedures.

Surgical techs sterilize equipment

Surgical techs are an important part of the surgical team. They are responsible for sterilizing equipment, setting up the operating room, and helping the surgeon during the surgery.

After the surgery, they may also help with wound care and recovery. Surgical techs must be able to work well under pressure and follow instructions carefully. They must also be able to pay close attention to detail.

They also set up operating room instruments

Surgical technologists are trained to work closely with surgeons, anesthesiologists and operating room nurses. Their duties include prepping patients for surgery, passing instruments to surgeons during procedures and monitoring patients’ vital signs during and after surgery. They also set up operating room instruments, such as suction machines, slit lamps and electrosurgical units.

Surgical techs may also assist in the actual surgery

Surgery is a delicate and precise process, and even the slightest mistake can have dire consequences. That’s why surgical teams have several people working together to ensure that everything goes according to plan. Surgical techs are an important part of this team, and their duties include preparing the operating room and sterilizing equipment.

Surgical techs may also assist in the actual surgery. They may hand instruments to the surgeon or hold retractors, which are used to expose the area being operated on. They may also apply suction to remove body fluids from the surgical site.

Education and Training

To become a surgical technologist, also called a scrub, you’ll need formal training, which can be obtained through a surgical technology diploma or certificate program at a community college, technical school, or hospital. A few states also offer apprenticeship programs.

Surgical techs must have a high school diploma or equivalent

A surgical technologist, also called a scrub, scrub tech, surgical technician or operating room technician, is an allied health professional working as a member of the surgical team to help provide safe patient care before, during and after operation.

Surgical technologists work under the supervision of a licensed practical nurse (LPN) or registered nurse (RN). They may also be supervised by a surgeon. Surgical technologists are responsible for ensuring that the operating room is ready for surgery and that all of the necessary instruments and supplies are sterilized and ready to use. They also help to position the patient on the operating table and may assist in performs skin prep prior to surgery. During the surgery, the surgical technologist hands instruments and supplies to the surgeon as needed. After the surgery, they help to clean and sterilize the operating room and may assist in moving the patient to recovery.

Most surgical technologists have at least a high school diploma or equivalent, although some may have completed a postsecondary training program. Many surgical technologists complete on-the-job training, but some states require certification or registration.

They must also complete an accredited surgical tech program

In order to become a surgical tech, you must first complete an accredited surgical tech program. These programs are typically offered at community colleges and technical schools, and they typically last between one and two years. During your coursework, you’ll take classes such as medical ethics, human anatomy, medical terminology, and sterilization techniques. You’ll also gain hands-on experience in a laboratory setting.

Surgical techs must also pass a certification exam

After completing an accredited surgical technology program, graduates are eligible to take the certification exam offered by the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA). To be eligible to sit for the credentialing exam, candidates must have graduated from an accredited surgical technology program and completed a minimum of 40 cases in which they performed scrub duties. The credentialing exam tests candidates on their knowledge of surgical technology principles and practices.

Salary

A surgical tech, also called a surgical technician or technologist, is an allied health professional who works alongside surgeons, anesthesiologists, registered nurses and other surgical personnel during surgery. Surgical techs are responsible for setting up the operating room, sterile instruments, equipment and supplies. They also may handle patient transportation, charting and specimen collection.

Surgical techs earn a median annual salary of $47,300

The median annual salary for surgical techs was $47,300 in 2016, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $33,430, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $68,350.

The top 10% of surgical techs earn more than $64,000

The top 10% of surgical techs earn more than $64,000 per year while the bottom 10% make less than $33,000 annually. The average yearly salary for a surgical tech is $47,300. The median wage is the wage at which half of the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less.

The bottom 10% of surgical techs earn less than $33,000

The bottom 10% of surgical techs earn less than $33,000, and the top 10% earn more than $61,000. Median salary is about $47,000.

To become a surgical tech, most people complete a 1-year certificate program or a 2-year associate’s degree in surgical technology. Some 4-year colleges offer bachelor’s degree programs in health sciences with a focus on surgical technology, but these programs are less common.

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