Surgeon's technicians, also called surgery technicians, surgical technicians or surgical technologists, assist surgeons and health professionals in the operating room. They typically hold Associate of Science (A.S.) degrees from technical or vocational schools. Most programs include internships or externships, laboratory time and clinical components so as to allow students to gain practical experience in the field. Students must pass a background check and drug screening.
Associate of Science Degree in Surgery Technology
Most of the courses in surgery technician programs focus on science and health and take one to two years to complete. Students learn many of the scientific and other fundamentals of health care. Some courses in mathematics may also be required. Examples of surgery technician courses include:
- Medical terminology
- Surgical instrumentation
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
Surgical technologists are expected to enjoy a 15% increase in demand between 2014 and 2024, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). These professionals earned a median of $21.31 per hour or $44,330 per year as of May 2015. The increase is attributed to an aging and growing population, according to the BLS. The number of surgeries will increase as the population grows and ages.
Continuing Education Information
Students who earn an A.S. in surgery technology are usually encouraged to become certified by the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA). Students must be graduates of accredited surgical technology programs to take the exam. After successfully becoming a Certified Surgical Technologist (CST), students must re-certify every four years and take continuing education credits.
An Associate of Science Degree in Surgery Technology program delivers instruction focusing on science and health along with an internship or externship for hands-on experience. Students may complete courses related to microbiology, physics, medical terminology, and pathophysiology.