Surgical Technologist Careers

surgical-tech-500A surgical technician is a very important part of the surgery team. A surgery tech is responsible for preparing the operating room by gathering the needed supplies and equipment. The tech will create and maintain the sterile field and count the items that are going to be used in surgery.

During the surgery, the tech will pass the instruments and supplies to the surgeon or surgical assistant. The tech may also be responsible for handling and labeling specimens that are to be sent to lab for testing. The surgical tech will perform a count of sponges and supplies with another member of the surgery team. This is vital to make sure  no sponges or instruments were left inside of the patient.

After the surgery, the surgery technician will remove any used instruments and supplies from the operating room. The tech will transport used instruments to central supply to be sterilized. Then the surgical technologist will prepare the operating room for the next patient.

Surgical Technologist Career Snapshot

Surgical technologists work in hospitals or medical centers. They usually work 40 hours a week which may include weekend, holiday, or night shifts. Surgical technologists spend much of their day on their feet.

Further details on a career as a surgical technologist are listed below (statistics from the May 2015 Bureau of Labor Statistics and Onet Online):


is the yearly pay for surgical technologists.


increase in employment between 2014 and 2024.


have an Associate’s degree while 31% have a o post-secondary certificate.

Surgical Technologist Education

Surgical technologists can receive training that leads to a diploma, certificate, or associate degree and they last from 9 to 24 months. Upon completion of a training program, it is advised that those seeking employment as a surgical technologist become certified. Certification consists of graduating from an accredited surgical technologist program and passing a national certification exam.

Surgical Technologist Job Duties

Surgical technologists work directly with surgeons and other staff during surgical operations. They are a member of operating room teams. Surgical technologists set up the surgical instruments, solutions, and equipment before operations. They also prep the patients for surgery and assist surgeons during surgeries.

Surgical Technologist Salaries

The average salary for surgical technologists is about $44,330 per year according to May 2015 statistics. The low 10% of surgical technologists earn less than $31,410 while the highest 10% earn more than $63,410 per year. Learn more about surgical technologist salaries.

Surgical Technologist Job Outlook

With the high pay and minimal training, this field is also a winner due to the fact that it is a growing field. The employment outlook for surgical technologists and technicians is expected to grow at a rate of 15% over the next few years, which is a higher than average rate.

Surgical Technologist Skills & Abilities

Surgical Technologist Skill Set:Required Abilities:Tools Used by Surgical Technologists:Typical Work Activities:
• Monitoring
• Active Listening
• Operation Monitoring
• Coordination
• Critical Thinking
• Oral Comprehension
• Near Vision
• Problem Sensitivity
• Speech Recognition
• Arm-Hand Steadiness
• Electrosurgical equipment
• Medical stapler
• Surgical pneumatic drills
• Surgical robotics equipment
• Getting Information
• Caring for others
• Using relevant information
• Moving objects
• Inspecting equipment

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