OB/GYN technicians typically work in hospitals and nursing facilities, however they can also provide home health care services. A post-secondary education is required to become an OB/GYN technician, and appropriate certification is often recommended.
OB/GYN technicians assist doctors and nurses during labor and delivery procedures. They may also be responsible for ensuring cleanliness of the labor and delivery wards and for light clerical duties. Most employers require OB/GYN technicians to hold a high school diploma and have completed some post-secondary education. They may also require technicians to hold a surgical technologist certification or be a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA).
|Required Education||High school diploma and post-secondary education. A surgical technologist certification or CNA certification is recommended|
|Other Requirements||Organizational skills and knowledge of common OB/GYN equipment|
|Projected Job Growth (2018-2028) *||9% (surgical technologists)|
|Mean Salary (2018) *||$49,040 (surgical technologists)|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
OB/GYN technicians, sometimes called obstetric technicians, provide assistance during vaginal deliveries, sterilizing equipment, keeping records and examining patients. They ensure cleanliness and efficiency in labor and delivery wards by keeping rooms prepared and monitoring patient health. OB/GYN technicians need to have a basic understanding of anatomy, physiology, and medical terms, particularly those related to female anatomy. They also perform light clerical duties.
Hospitals and private obstetrics practices often employ obstetric technicians. Long hours and physically demanding work are common to these jobs. On-call and overnight shifts are usually required. They need to be organized and understand how to operate and clean various types of equipment, such as autoclaves, sterilizers, and ultrasound machines.
Employers typically require OB/GYN technicians to have at least a high school diploma and some type of postsecondary training in surgical technology, according to a November 2013 search of surgical technician jobs at CareerBuilder.com. Some one-year certificate programs in obstetrics and gynecologic technology exist, but these aren't common. Some employers may require OB/GYN techs to hold surgical technologist certification through the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA). A Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) credential may also qualify some OB/GYN technologists for some jobs.
While certificate programs in obstetric technology are rare, these types of programs focus on surgical technology and female anatomy, preparing students to assist during surgical gynecological procedures and follow direction from doctors and registered nurses. Surgical technology programs lasting two years include instruction in anatomy, physiology, clinical practice, surgical skills, and intervention. Students typically earn an associate's degree and qualify for the Certified Surgical Technologist (CST) examination.
To qualify for the NBSTSA's Certified Surgical Technologist exam, applicants need to have graduated from an approved educational program or have applicable military training. Processing and application fees are required. CST candidates can take practice tests and access other preparation materials can be accessed through the NBSTSA website. To earn the CNA, candidates must complete at least 75 hours of training and meet other state-mandated requirements.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) doesn't report wage and other career data specifically for OB/GYN technologists, but statistics are available for surgical technologists and nursing assistants. As of May 2018, certified nursing assistants working in general medical and surgical hospitals made an average of $29,580 a year. Surgical technologists made an average of $49,040 a year as of May 2018, the BLS reported.
When considering a career as an OB/GYN technician, it's important to know what to expect in terms of working environments and salary. Having a solid understanding of the duties required on the job is another important factor in determining if this is the right career for you.