The Ultimate Guide to Becoming a Surgical Technician

Are you interested in a career in healthcare that requires precision, teamwork, and critical thinking skills? If so, becoming a surgical technician may be the perfect fit for you. In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through everything you need to know about pursuing a career as a surgical technician.

What is a Surgical Technician?

A surgical technician, also known as a scrub tech or operating room technician, plays a crucial role in the operating room. They assist surgeons during surgical procedures by preparing the operating room, sterilizing instruments, and handing instruments to the surgeon during the procedure. Surgical technicians also help to ensure the safety and well-being of patients during surgery.

Education and Training

In order to become a surgical technician, you will need to complete a surgical technology program, which can usually be completed in 12-24 months. These programs are offered at community colleges, technical schools, and vocational schools. During the program, you will learn about surgical procedures, anatomy, medical terminology, and sterile techniques.


While certification is not always required to work as a surgical technician, most employers prefer to hire certified surgical technicians. The National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA) offers the Certified Surgical Technologist (CST) credential, which demonstrates that you have met national standards for surgical technology.

Clinical Experience

Once you have completed your education and obtained certification, you will need to gain hands-on clinical experience in a healthcare setting. Many surgical technology programs include a clinical practicum where you will work in a hospital or surgical center under the supervision of experienced surgical technicians.

Job Outlook and Salary

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for surgical technicians is expected to grow by 7% from 2019 to 2029, faster than the average for all occupations. The median annual wage for surgical technicians was $48,300 in May 2019. However, salaries can vary depending on factors such as experience, location, and type of healthcare facility.


Embarking on a career as a surgical technician can be a rewarding and fulfilling path for those interested in healthcare and hands-on work. If you are passionate about helping others, have a strong attention to detail, and thrive in fast-paced environments, becoming a surgical technician may be the right choice for you. Take the first step towards your future career by researching surgical technology programs in your area and reaching out to admissions advisors for more information.

We hope this guide has provided you with valuable information on how to become a surgical technician. If you have any questions or would like to share your own experience as a surgical technician, please leave a comment below.

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