The median surgical technologist salary (also popularly referred to as surgical tech salary) in the United States is reported to be around $40,500 per year or about $20 per hour. The top 10th percentile of surgical technologists (surgical tech) reported wages of about $57,000 or more per year or about $28 or more per hour. The bottom 10th percentile of surgical techs reported a salary of $33,500 or less per year which is about $16 or less per hour.
The 50% that find themselves in the middle of the pay-scale reported a salary in the range between $36,000 and $45,000 per year or between $18 and $22 per hour. Surgical technologists, like many other professionals, have several factors that can affect how much they earn. Some of these factors include years of experience, hours worked, place of employment, geographical location of employment and level of skills.
Some employees provide job benefits for surgical technologists (surgical tech). Some of the benefits they may receive include healthcare benefits, pension, social security, 401K, paid time off and social security. When these benefits are added to their base salary, their medial total annual remuneration could rise to about $60,000 per year.
The top five states with the highest mean salary for surgical technologists are California – $55,000; Nevada – $54,000; Alaska – $ 53,500; Hawaii – $53,400 and Connecticut – $52,830.
Job description of a surgical technologist (surgical tech)
Surgical technologists or surgical techs or surgical technicians are trained to assist in surgical operations. They undertake the preparation of operating rooms, making sure all surgical equipment are properly arranged and are in the right places and assist physicians and nurses during surgery.
They have many important responsibilities that ensure an operation goes very smoothly. Some of their duties include:
- Preparing the operation room for new surgeries
- Passing instruments to the physician during surgery
- Maintain equipment and operating room. They clean equipment, instruments and the operating room after an operation
- They also maintain and manage supplies
- They prep patients for surgery. This may include shaving washing and disinfecting the area to be operated on
- They may be responsible for transporting the patient to the operating theater, help in positioning them on the operating table and covering them with operating “drapes”
- They help get doctors and nurses into their sterile gowns and gloves
- Surgical technologists or surgical techs may also monitor a patient’s vital signs and read charts
During the operation, surgical technologists perform duties such as passing instruments and other supplies to physicians and surgeon assistants. They will be asked to hold various apparatus such as lights. They may operate machines such as sterilizers and suction machines. They often prepare, take care of and get rid of samples taken for analysis in the lab during the operation.
A surgical technician or surgical tech is a very important member of the surgical team that performs effective and efficient surgeries.
How to become a surgical technologist (surgical tech)
There are many kinds of institutions that offer formal training to surgical techs. Those wanting to go into this profession can receive their training from junior or community colleges, technical and vocational institutes, colleges and universities and the military. Some hospitals also offer programs in surgical technology.
Most people in this profession only need a certificate or associates degree in surgical technology. The program duration can be from seven months to two years. The typical requirement for admission to these programs is a high school diploma or its equivalent.
The program usually provides classroom lessons and practical clinical experience. Students are taught such programs as anatomy, medical terminology, biology and some other topics. Students work under supervision in clinical settings where they gain an understanding of surgical procedures and how surgical technologists or techs assist during an operation.
After completing the program, students should become certified. If you attend an accredited surgical tech school, you will obtain certification at the end of your training after writing and passing an exam. Most employers will only hire those with certification. So getting certified will enhance their chances of finding a job.
Verdict on surgical technologist salary or surgical tech salary
In the field of medical technologists and technicians, a surgical tech’s salary is very competitive and respectable. The job outlook is very bright and people who enter this program should not find it very difficult to get jobs.