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How to Become a Surgical Technician in Colorado

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Are you interested in becoming a surgical technician in Colorado? In this blog post, we will discuss what a surgical technician does, where they work, the requirements to become a surgical technician in Colorado, and where you can find surgical technician classes in the state.

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What is a Surgical Technician?

A surgical technician, also known as a surgical technologist, is a vital member of the surgical team. They assist surgeons, nurses, and other healthcare professionals during surgical procedures. Some of their responsibilities include:

  • Preparing the operating room by sterilizing equipment and ensuring all necessary supplies are available

  • Assisting the surgical team by passing instruments and supplies during the procedure

  • Monitoring the patient's vital signs and providing support during the surgery

  • Cleaning and maintaining surgical equipment after the procedure

Surgical technicians play a crucial role in ensuring the safety and efficiency of surgical procedures.

Where Does a Surgical Technician Work?

Surgical technicians can work in various healthcare settings, including:

  • Hospitals: Surgical technicians are commonly employed in hospital operating rooms, where they assist with a wide range of surgeries.

  • Surgical Centers: Many surgical procedures are performed in specialized surgical centers, and surgical technicians are an essential part of the team.

  • Physician Offices: Some surgical technicians work in physician's offices that perform minor surgical procedures.

How to Become a Surgical Technician in Colorado?

To become a Surgical Technician in Colorado, one must first complete an accredited education program, typically a 1-year certificate or 2-year associate's degree. Next, they must obtain certification by passing the Certified Surgical Technologist (CST) exam. With certification in hand, they can then search for job opportunities to start earning a competitive salary.

Requirements to Become a Surgical Technician in Colorado

To become a surgical technician in Colorado, you will need to fulfill certain education and legal requirements. The specific requirements may vary, but generally, you will need:

  • Education: Most surgical technician programs require a high school diploma or equivalent. You can choose to complete a diploma, certificate, or associate degree program in surgical technology. These programs typically include both classroom instruction and hands-on clinical experience.

  • Legal Requirements: In Colorado, surgical technicians are not required to be licensed. However, many employers prefer to hire certified surgical technicians. To become certified, you will need to pass a national certification exam, such as the Certified Surgical Technologist (CST) exam offered by the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA).

Exploring a Career in Surgical Technician Outside Colorado

If you've been reading this article and long to become a Surgical Technician, but you live in a different state, don't lose hope – achieving your goal is still within reach. You might consider exploring opportunities to become a Surgical Technician in District of Columbia, Indiana, Missouri, South Dakota, or Wyoming. If none of these locations work for you, Dreambound makes it easier than ever to pursue your dreams regardless of your location by simplifying the process of finding and comparing Surgical Technician classes through a convenient search by zip code. With determination and access to the right resources, you can confidently pursue a successful career in healthcare, no matter where you live.

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How do I get my Surgical Technician certification?

Becoming a certified surgical technician is an important step towards a successful career in the field of healthcare. This certification ensures that you possess the necessary skills and knowledge to assist surgeons during medical procedures. If you are interested in pursuing a career as a surgical technician, here are the steps you need to follow to obtain your certification:

  1. Research Accredited Programs: The first step in becoming a certified surgical technician is to find an accredited educational program. Accreditation ensures that the program meets certain standards of quality and will provide you with the necessary knowledge and skills. The Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) is the main accrediting body for surgical technician programs in the United States.

  2. Complete an Educational Program: Once you have identified an accredited program, you will need to complete the necessary coursework and clinical training. Surgical technician programs typically take anywhere from 9 months to 2 years to complete, depending on whether you choose a certificate, diploma, or associate degree program. During your education, you will learn about anatomy, medical terminology, surgical procedures, and sterile techniques.

  3. Apply for Certification: After completing your educational program, you will need to apply for certification through the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA) or the National Center for Competency Testing (NCCT). Both organizations offer certification exams that assess your knowledge and skills in surgical technology. The exams typically consist of multiple-choice questions and may also include a practical component.

  4. Prepare for the Certification Exam: To increase your chances of passing the certification exam, it is important to prepare adequately. Review your class notes and textbooks, and consider using study guides or practice exams to familiarize yourself with the format and content of the exam. Additionally, some programs offer review courses or study groups to help you prepare.

  5. Take the Certification Exam: Once you feel prepared, you can schedule your certification exam with the NBSTSA or NCCT. The exam is typically administered at a testing center and may require a fee. During the exam, you will be tested on various aspects of surgical technology, including surgical procedures, patient safety, and sterile techniques. Passing the exam demonstrates that you have met the standards set by the certifying organization and are qualified to work as a surgical technician.

  6. Maintain Your Certification: After passing the certification exam, it is important to maintain your certification by meeting the continuing education requirements set by the certifying organization. This may involve completing a certain number of continuing education credits or participating in professional development activities. By staying up-to-date with the latest advancements in surgical technology, you can ensure that you provide the highest level of care to your patients.

How do I get a job as a Surgical Technician?

Once you have obtained your certification as a surgical technician, you are ready to start your career in the field. Here are some steps you can take to increase your chances of getting a job as a surgical technician:

  1. Update Your Resume: Begin by updating your resume to highlight your education, certification, and any relevant work experience. Include details about the surgical technician program you completed, any clinical rotations you participated in, and any specialized skills or certifications you have acquired. Be sure to also include any volunteer work or extracurricular activities that demonstrate your commitment to the field of healthcare.

  2. Network: Networking is an important tool in finding job opportunities in any field. Connect with professionals in the healthcare industry through online platforms, such as LinkedIn, and attend industry events or job fairs to meet potential employers. Building relationships with professionals in the field can provide valuable insights and connections that may lead to job opportunities.

  3. Apply for Jobs: Begin your job search by applying for surgical technician positions at hospitals, outpatient surgery centers, and other healthcare facilities. Many hospitals have dedicated surgical departments or operating rooms where surgical technicians are needed. Additionally, consider reaching out to staffing agencies that specialize in healthcare placements, as they may have access to a wider range of job opportunities.

  4. Prepare for Interviews: Once you start receiving interview offers, it is important to prepare for each interview to increase your chances of success. Research the organization you are interviewing with, familiarize yourself with their surgical department, and prepare answers to common interview questions. Additionally, consider practicing your surgical technician skills, such as setting up a sterile field or identifying surgical instruments, to demonstrate your proficiency during the interview.

  5. Continuing Education: While not required, continuing your education can help you stand out in the job market and increase your chances of finding a job as a surgical technician. Consider pursuing advanced certifications or specialized training in areas such as robotic surgery or cardiovascular procedures. This additional training can make you a more attractive candidate to employers looking for individuals with advanced skills and knowledge.

  6. Be Persistent: Finding a job as a surgical technician may take time and persistence. Don't get discouraged if you don't receive immediate job offers. Continue to apply for positions, network with professionals in the field, and seek out opportunities to gain additional experience or training. By demonstrating your commitment and dedication to the field, you will increase your chances of finding a job as a surgical technician.

Career Paths and Opportunities after Becoming a Surgical Technician

Becoming a certified surgical technician opens up a variety of career paths and opportunities within the healthcare industry. Here are some potential career paths you can explore after obtaining your certification:

  1. Hospital Operating Room: Many surgical technicians work in hospital operating rooms, assisting surgeons during a wide range of procedures. In this setting, you may have the opportunity to work in various surgical specialties, such as orthopedics, neurosurgery, or cardiovascular surgery. Hospital operating rooms can be fast-paced and require the ability to work well under pressure.

  2. Outpatient Surgery Centers: Outpatient surgery centers are facilities that specialize in performing surgeries that do not require an overnight stay. These centers often have a smaller staff and focus on specific surgical specialties, such as ophthalmology or plastic surgery. Working in an outpatient surgery center can offer a different pace and atmosphere compared to a hospital operating room.

  3. Specialized Surgical Teams: Some surgical technicians choose to work as part of specialized surgical teams. These teams are often found in large medical centers or academic institutions and focus on complex surgical procedures or research. Specialized surgical teams may work closely with surgeons, nurses, and other healthcare professionals to provide advanced surgical care.

  4. Educator or Instructor: After gaining experience as a surgical technician, you may choose to pursue a career in education. Many surgical technician programs hire experienced professionals to teach and train future surgical technicians. This role allows you to share your knowledge and skills with others and contribute to the training of the next generation of surgical technicians.

  5. Sales Representative: Another career path for surgical technicians is to work as a sales representative for surgical equipment or medical device companies. In this role, you would use your expertise to educate healthcare professionals about new surgical technologies and assist in product demonstrations. Sales representatives often work closely with surgeons and surgical teams, providing support and training on the use of new equipment.

  6. Travel Surgical Technician: If you enjoy traveling and experiencing new environments, you may consider becoming a travel surgical technician. Travel surgical technicians work on temporary assignments in different healthcare facilities across the country. This allows you to gain new experiences, work with different surgical teams, and explore different parts of the country.

Final Thoughts

Becoming a certified surgical technician is an exciting and rewarding career choice. By following the steps outlined above, you can obtain your certification and start your journey towards a successful career in the field of healthcare. Remember to stay proactive in your job search, network with professionals in the field, and continue your education to increase your chances of finding a job as a surgical technician. With dedication and perseverance, you can build a fulfilling career as a surgical technician and make a positive impact on the lives of patients.

If you're thinking of a new career path, Dreambound offers in-depth guides to understand various job choices:

Athena Kan
Written by
Athena Kan

Athena is Co-founder and CEO of Dreambound.

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