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If you are thinking about a career as a surgical technician, you are probably wondering what type of training you will have to complete in order to qualify for this sort of position. There are a variety of surgical technician training programs out there, all with slightly different requirements. However, many of these programs have similar prerequisites and requirements.
Since surgical technologists assist with surgeries, formal training is desired by employers. Training in surgical technologies can be obtained through a variety of schools, colleges, and universities. These programs may result in either a diploma or certification.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, www.bls.gov, employment opportunities should be favorable because technological advances will permit new surgical procedures to be performed.
Most of the surgical technology training programs require you to have a high school diploma in order to begin the training program. It is also helpful if you have taken courses like math, science, and health while you were in high school, although this isn’t usually a prerequisite of getting into the program. Once you have started a Surgical technologist training program, you will take courses such as anatomy, English, math, medical terminology, microbiology, pharmacology, physiology, psychology, surgical procedures, and professional ethics. You will also have to complete and pass a physical exam, a drug test, CPR certification, immunizations, and a background check.
Surgical technologists receive their training in formal programs offered by community and junior colleges, vocational schools, universities, hospitals, and the military. In 2008, the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) recognized more than 450 accredited training programs. Programs last from 9 to 24 months and lead to a certificate, diploma, or associate’s degree. High school graduation normally is required for admission. Recommended high school courses include health, biology, chemistry, and mathematics.
Programs provide classroom education and supervised clinical experience. Students take courses in anatomy, physiology, microbiology, pharmacology, professional ethics, and medical terminology. Other topics covered include the care and safety of patients during surgery, sterile techniques, and surgical procedures. Students also learn to sterilize instruments; prevent and control infection; and handle special drugs, solutions, supplies, and equipment.
During the course of your surgical technician training, you will learn how to do all sorts of tasks in that you will need to be competent in so that you can assist the physician before, during, and after surgery. You will need to learn how to properly sterilize equipment, how to prep patients for surgery, how to assist the physician by handing them instruments as they are requested, and how to clean and set up the operating room.
In order to be sure that you are able to complete the required tasks of a surgical tech, surgical technician training usually includes some labs or clinical rotations in order to let you get some hands on experience with the tasks that you will be required to perform and get comfortable performing them. It is best to choose a program that can give you this sort of experience if this is at all possible since it is very valuable and will also give you a chance to make sure that this is the right career for you. You will be able to see if working in an operating room suits you.