Everything You Need to Know About a Surg Tech Career
An allied health career as a Surg Tech provides the unique opportunity to assist in life-saving procedures, working alongside nurses, surgeons, and anesthesiologists.
Surgical Technologists (also known as Operating Room Technicians or Scrub Techs) are crucial surgery team members. They perform various duties that help ensure successful surgical procedures and positive outcomes for the patient.
Are you interested in becoming a Surg Tech? Keep reading to learn more about the position’s roles and the benefits of becoming a traveling Surg Tech.
As part of the surgical preparation process, Surg Techs are the first to enter the operating room and prepare the space for the procedure. The Surg Techs will use a list of necessary supplies to organize the tools and orient the room per the surgeon's preference. This process includes:
- Sterilizing, counting, and arranging surgical instruments
- Ensuring the availability of necessary supplies
- Setting up the operating table and lighting
Additionally, surgical technicians may be responsible for transporting patients to and from operating rooms or assisting with patient positioning and preparation, such as applying sterile drapes to the patient.
Once the surgery is underway, the Surg Tech is responsible for maintaining a sterile environment during the procedure. The techs also serve as an additional hand for the surgeon and assistants by:
- Passing sterile instruments and supplies
- Retracting the incision site
- Handling specimens for lab analysis
- Anticipating team and patient needs
Surg Techs may also be required to troubleshoot any equipment issues and keep track of inventory during surgery to ensure that necessary supplies are available when needed.
Upon surgery completion, the Surg Technologist assists with bandaging, transporting the patient into the recovery room, and cleaning the OR. Their postoperative duties often include:
- Counting instruments and tools used during surgery
- Suturing the incisions
- Applying dressings
- Disposing of supplies such as needles and gauze
- Re-stocking the OR materials
- Clean and sterilize the OR
To become a surgical technician, you need either a certificate, diploma, or associate degree from an accredited program. Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) and the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) both provide directories for finding accredited programs.
Upon completion of your program, the next step is to get certified. While only some states require the Certified Surgical Technologist (CST) designation, most facilities require their Surg Techs to have the certification.
If you're looking for exam prep tools, the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA) website provides a multitude of helpful resources. Additional certification is available through the National Center for Competency Testing (NCCT).
Healthcare facilities are experiencing staffing shortages nationwide, creating unprecedented demand for allied health travelers, including Surgical Technologists. Due to this high demand, salaries and pay packages are competitive, often providing greater earning potential than a permanent staff position. Browse our current Surg Tech Jobs today!
Pay aside, becoming a traveling Surg Tech provides incredible learning opportunities, allowing you to grow your career as you build your skills and knowledge in leading healthcare facilities. Being an allied health traveler also enables you to combine your passion for healthcare and your love for adventure; you can discover new cities, visit national parks, and explore the country in ways that would not be possible with a permanent staff position.
Whether it's your first or twelfth assignment as a traveling Surg Tech, FlexCare's S1NGLEPOINT Recruiters are here to help advance your allied health career. In addition, we believe in providing an exceptional High Pay, Hassle Free experience for our travelers, meaning you never have to negotiate for the pay package you deserve. You'll receive our highest available compensation every time. If an available assignment's pay package doesn't align with your career goals, your recruiter will work to find your perfect assignment and save you time from negotiating.