Surgical Tech

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Surgical Tech FAQs

Have questions about surgical tech education and careers? Here we answer your common questions about surgical tech schooling and education requirements. Check out our guide for answers about surgical technology.

Q. What are surgical technologists?

A. Surgical technologists are health care professionals who provide vital support services for licensed physicians and nurses before, during and after surgical procedures.

Q. What do surgical technologists do?

A. Specific duties depend on the place of employment. However, as a rule, surgical technologists are responsible for preparing and sterilizing an operating room and its equipment before and after surgical procedures, making sure the proper surgical instruments are on hand, assisting surgeons and nurses during procedures, and preparing patients for surgery.

Q. What are the various names for surgical technologist?

A. Surgical technologists may be called surgical techs, surgical technicians, surgical assistants, operating room technicians or assistants, central supply technician, sterile processing technician, and scrub techs or scrubs.

Q. Where do surgical technologists work?

A. Surgical technologists often work in hospitals, outpatient surgery centers, physicians' offices, dental offices and any other health care facilities where surgeries are performed.

Q. How much money do surgical technologists make?

A. Income for surgical technologists is a factor of education, experience and skill set along with place of employment and local market conditions. Nationwide, surgical technologists have a median annual salary of $39,920, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The bottom 10 percent, composed mostly of entry-level techs, made around $28,800 per year. The top 10 percent, composed mostly of experienced professionals in top markets, typically makes $59,200 per year.*

Q. How does the long-term job market look for surgical technologists?

A. Employment opportunities for surgical technologists are expected to increase about 19 percent between 2010 and 2020, according to the BLS. The BLS expects about 17,800 new surgical tech jobs to be created during this period.*

Q. Is special training required to become a surgical technologist?

A. Because surgical technologists are not licensed, the law does not require someone looking for employment in this field be specially trained. However, as a practical matter, most employers do require their surgical tech applicants have formal training in this or a related health care specialty.

Q. How long does surgical technologist training take?

A. Everest offers two types of surgical technologist training programs. One is a diploma program you can complete in as little as one year. The other is an associate degree program you can complete in as little as two years. Programs and schedules vary by campus.

Q. Is surgical technologist training available at every Everest campus?

A. Currently, surgical technologist training is available at several Everest campuses throughout the country. Check the Surgical Tech Schools page for the location of the program nearest you.

Q. How much does Everest's Surgical Technologist program cost?

A. That depends on which program you choose to take. For specific costs, including financial aid opportunities, we suggest you contact Everest at 1.866.210.6524. Financial aid is available for those who qualify.

*Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics - and O*NET Online -

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