Surgical Technician

How to Become a Surgical Technician in Florida

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Surgical technicians, also known as surgical technologists, are crucial members of the surgical team, assisting surgeons and other healthcare professionals during surgical procedures. Their main responsibility is to ensure that the operating room is properly prepared and that all surgical instruments and equipment are sterilized and ready for use.

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What is a Surgical Technician?

Surgical technicians play a vital role in the operating room. Some of their key responsibilities include:

  • Preparing the operating room by sterilizing and setting up surgical instruments and equipment

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

  • Monitoring and maintaining a sterile environment during surgery

  • Anticipating the needs of the surgical team and providing necessary assistance

  • Handling specimens for laboratory analysis

  • Cleaning and restocking the operating room after each procedure

Where does a Surgical Technician work?

Surgical technicians can find employment in a variety of healthcare settings. Some common places of work include:

  • Hospitals

  • Outpatient surgery centers

  • Ambulatory care centers

  • Physician's offices

  • Dental offices

  • Labor and delivery units

How to Become a Surgical Technician in Florida?

To become a Surgical Technician in Florida, one must first complete an accredited surgical technology program, which typically takes 1-2 years. After graduation, individuals must pass the Certified Surgical Technologist (CST) exam to obtain certification. Once certified, they can search for job opportunities in hospitals, outpatient surgery centers, and other healthcare facilities, earning a competitive salary.

Requirements to Become a Surgical Technician in Florida

To become a surgical technician in Florida, you must meet certain education and legal requirements. These include:

  • High School Diploma or GED: You must have a high school diploma or equivalent to enroll in a surgical technician program.

  • Accredited Surgical Technician Program: You must complete an accredited surgical technician program, which usually takes around 9 to 24 months, depending on the program.

  • Clinical Experience: Most surgical technician programs include a clinical component, where you will gain hands-on experience in a healthcare setting.

  • Certification: While certification is not legally required in Florida, many employers prefer to hire certified surgical technicians. The National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA) offers the Certified Surgical Technologist (CST) credential.

Exploring a Career in Surgical Technician Outside Florida

If you've been reading this article and aspire to become a Surgical Technician, but you reside in a different state, rest assured that achieving your goal is still within reach. You might consider exploring opportunities to become a Surgical Technician in Colorado, Illinois, Nebraska, South Dakota, or Wyoming. Don't worry if you haven't found your location among these, because 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 dedication 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?

If you are interested in becoming a Surgical Technician, obtaining the necessary certification is a crucial step in your career journey. Certification not only validates your knowledge and skills but also demonstrates your commitment to your profession. Here are the steps you need to follow to get your Surgical Technician certification:

  1. Education: The first step towards becoming a Surgical Technician is to complete a formal education program. These programs are usually offered by community colleges, vocational schools, and hospitals. The duration of the program can vary, but it typically takes 9 to 24 months to complete. It is important to ensure that the program you choose is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES).

  2. Clinical Experience: Along with completing the educational program, most certification boards require a certain amount of clinical experience. This is typically gained through an internship or externship program, where you will work in a hospital or surgical center under the supervision of experienced Surgical Technicians. This hands-on experience is crucial for developing the necessary skills and competence in the field.

  3. Certification Exam: Once you have completed your education and gained the required clinical experience, you will be eligible to take the certification exam. There are several organizations that offer certification for Surgical Technicians, including the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA) and the National Center for Competency Testing (NCCT). The exam usually consists of multiple-choice questions that assess your knowledge and understanding of various surgical procedures, equipment, and patient care.

  4. Continuing Education: After obtaining your certification, it is important to maintain and update your skills and knowledge. Most certification boards require Surgical Technicians to complete a certain number of continuing education credits every few years to renew their certification. These credits can be earned through workshops, conferences, online courses, and other educational activities.

How do I get a job as a Surgical Technician?

Once you have obtained your Surgical Technician certification, you can start looking for job opportunities in the field. Here are some steps to help you land a job as a Surgical Technician:

  1. Resume and Cover Letter: Prepare a well-written resume and cover letter that highlights your education, clinical experience, and any relevant skills or certifications. Tailor your resume to the specific job you are applying for, emphasizing your strengths and accomplishments that are relevant to the role of a Surgical Technician.

  2. Job Search: Look for job openings in hospitals, surgical centers, and other healthcare facilities. Check online job boards, professional networking websites, and the websites of healthcare organizations for available positions. You can also reach out to your network of contacts, including classmates, instructors, and professionals in the field, to inquire about job openings or get referrals.

  3. Interview Preparation: Once you have applied for a job and been selected for an interview, it is important to prepare thoroughly. Research the organization and the specific role you are applying for. Familiarize yourself with common interview questions and prepare thoughtful and concise answers. Dress professionally and bring copies of your resume, certification, and any other relevant documents. During the interview, demonstrate your knowledge, skills, and passion for the field.

  4. Professional Networking: Networking can be a valuable tool in finding job opportunities as a Surgical Technician. Attend industry conferences, workshops, and other events where you can meet professionals in the field. Join professional organizations, such as the Association of Surgical Technologists (AST), to connect with other Surgical Technicians and stay updated on industry trends and job opportunities. Building relationships with professionals in the field can lead to referrals and job leads.

  5. Continuing Education and Professional Development: In addition to maintaining your certification, it is important to continue learning and developing your skills as a Surgical Technician. Stay updated on the latest advancements in surgical techniques, equipment, and patient care by attending workshops, conferences, and online courses. Consider pursuing advanced certifications or specialized training in areas such as robotic surgery or cardiovascular procedures. Continuing education and professional development can enhance your job prospects and open up new career opportunities.

Career Paths and Opportunities after Becoming a Surgical Technician

Becoming a Surgical Technician opens up various career paths and opportunities in the healthcare industry. Here are some potential career paths you can explore after obtaining your certification:

  1. Operating Room Technician: Many Surgical Technicians work as operating room technicians, assisting surgeons and nurses during surgical procedures. In this role, you will be responsible for preparing the operating room, sterilizing equipment, and ensuring that all necessary instruments and supplies are available during the surgery. You will also assist with patient positioning, draping, and wound closure.

  2. Surgical Technologist First Assistant: With additional training and experience, you can become a Surgical Technologist First Assistant. In this role, you will work closely with the surgeon, providing direct assistance during surgery. Your responsibilities may include suturing, tissue handling, and providing hemostasis. This role requires advanced knowledge and skills in surgical techniques and patient care.

  3. Surgical Technologist Educator: If you have a passion for teaching and mentoring, you can pursue a career as a Surgical Technologist educator. In this role, you will train and educate aspiring Surgical Technicians, preparing them for their certification exams and careers in the field. You may work in a vocational school, community college, or hospital-based education program.

  4. Surgical Technologist Supervisor or Manager: As you gain experience and leadership skills, you can advance to a supervisory or managerial role in a surgical department. In this role, you will oversee the work of other Surgical Technicians, ensure compliance with policies and procedures, and manage the daily operations of the department. This role requires strong organizational and communication skills.

  5. Specialized Surgical Technologist: Some Surgical Technicians choose to specialize in a specific area of surgery, such as neurosurgery, orthopedics, or cardiovascular surgery. Specializing in a specific area allows you to develop advanced skills and knowledge in that field, making you a valuable asset to surgeons and surgical teams specializing in that area.

Final Thoughts

Becoming a Surgical Technician is an excellent career choice for those interested in the healthcare field and have a passion for surgical procedures. By following the steps outlined above, you can obtain your certification and start your journey towards a rewarding career as a Surgical Technician. Remember to continue learning and growing in your profession through continuing education and professional development, and take advantage of the various career paths and opportunities available to you in the field. Good luck on your journey to becoming a Surgical Technician!

Remember, this journey doesn't end with this article — it's just the beginning. So, if this doesn't align with your preferences, explore these other articles:

Athena Kan
Written by
Athena Kan

Athena is Co-founder and CEO of Dreambound.

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