Also known as Certified Surgical Tech/First Assistant, Certified Surgical Technician, Certified Surgical Technologist (CST), Operating Room Surgical Technician (OR St), Operating Room Technician (OR Tech), Operating Room Technologist (OR Tech), Surgical Scrub Technician, Surgical Scrub Technologist (Surgical Scrub Tech), Surgical Technician, Surgical Technologist (Surgical Tech)
Also known as Certified Surgical Tech/First Assistant, Certified Surgical Technician, Certified Surgical Technologist (CST)
Surgical Technicians assist in operations, under the supervision of surgeons, registered nurses, or other surgical personnel.
In addition, Surgical Technicians may help set up operating room, prepare and transport patients for surgery, adjust lights and equipment, pass instruments and other supplies to surgeons and surgeons' assistants, hold retractors, cut sutures, and help count sponges, needles, supplies, and instruments.
Surgical Technicians are often responsible for overseeing or executing some or all of the following tasks:
The above responsibilities are specific to Surgical Technicians. More generally, Surgical Technicians are involved in several broader types of activities:
The median salary for a Surgical Technician is $49,710, and the average salary is $51,510. Both the median and average roughly describe the middle of the Surgical Technician salary range, but the average is more easily affected by extremely high or low salaries.
Many Surgical Technicians earn significantly more or less than the average, due to several factors. About 10% of Surgical Technicians earn less than $34,120 per year, 25% earn less than $41,010, 75% earn less than $60,980, and 90% earn less than $73,110.
Between the years of 2020 and 2030, the number of Surgical Technicians is expected to change by 8.7%, and there should be roughly 9,000 open positions for Surgical Technicians every year.
Career interests describe a person's preferences for different types of working environments and activities. When a person's interest match the demands of an occupation, people are usually more engaged and satisfied in that role.
Compared to most occupations, those who work as a Surgical Technician are usually higher in their Realistic, Social, and Conventional interests.
Surgical Technicians typically have very strong Realistic interests. Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
Also, Surgical Technicians typically have strong Social interests. Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
Lastly, Surgical Technicians typically have moderate Conventional interests. Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
People differ in their values, or what is most important to them for building job satisfaction and fulfillment.
Compared to most people, those working as a Surgical Technician tend to value Relationships, Support, and Achievement.
Most importantly, Surgical Technicians very strongly value Relationships. Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment.
Second, Surgical Technicians very strongly value Support. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees.
Lastly, Surgical Technicians moderately value Achievement. Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment.
Each occupation brings its own set of psychological demands, which describe the characteristics necessary to perform the job well.
In order to perform their job successfully, people who work as Surgical Technicians must consistently demonstrate qualities such as attention to detail, dependability, and self-control.
Below, you'll find a list of qualities typically required of Surgical Technicians, ranked by importance:
Surgical Technicians often have training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.
Surgical Technicians usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with this occupation.
Surgical Technicians may benefit from understanding of specialized subject areas, such as customer and personal service, medicine and dentistry, or education and training knowledge.
The list below shows several areas in which most Surgical Technicians might want to build proficiency, ranked by importance.
Surgical Technicians must develop a particular set of abilities to perform their job well. Abilities are individual capacities that influence a person's information processing, sensory perception, motor coordination, and physical strength or endurance. Individuals may naturally have certain abilities without explicit training, but most abilities can be sharpened somewhat through practice.
For example, Surgical Technicians need abilities such as oral comprehension, problem sensitivity, and near vision in order to perform their job at a high level. The list below shows several important abilities for Surgical Technicians, ranked by their relative importance.
Skills are developed capacities that enable people to function effectively in real-world settings. Unlike abilities, skills are typically easier to build through practice and experience. Skills influence effectiveness in areas such as learning, working with others, design, troubleshooting, and more.
Surgical Technicians frequently use skills like monitoring, active listening, and operations monitoring to perform their job effectively. The list below shows several critical skills for Surgical Technicians, ranked by their relative importance.
The information provided on this page is adapted from data and descriptions published by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration under the CC BY 4.0 license. TraitLab has modified some information for ease of use and reading, and the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment, and Training Administration has not approved, endorsed, or tested these modifications.
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