If like many, you’ve discovered that you want to earn a surgical tech salary and enter one of the fastest growing areas of the medical industry, it’s time you did the research and discovered what it’s going to take for you to begin your career.
While a college degree is not necessary to enter the field, it is recommended. Additionally, by obtaining the necessary certification before trying to enter the field, you increase your starting surgical tech salary and boost your chances for advancement. Moreover, employing hospitals, surgical centers and doctor’s offices typically prefer to hire those who are already certified.
By taking a certified course, a surgical tech may get a voluntary certification from the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting. The courses must be CAAHEP accredited and you must pass a national examination for certification before you can receive your certificate. Upon passing, the applicant can use the Certified Surgical Technologist or CST designation on their resumes and in professional work. To keep their certification in order, the certified surgical tech must achieve 60 hours of pre-approved continuing education in a four year period or pass the certifying exam every four years.
It is also possible to achieve certification from the National Center for Competency Testing or the NCCT. In order to take this exam, the candidates may follow one of three roads. They can complete a training program that is accredited, sign up for a two-year on the job training program with a hospital or accumulate seven years of experience by working in the field. At the end of this time, there is still an exam to pass, but at that time, the applicant can use the designation Tech in Surgery-Certified or TS-C. This must be renewed every five years through re-examinations or taking continuing education classes.
The examination tests for certification typically cost around $300, all total. There are also practice tests you can pay to take that run around $40 each too. They’re well worth the cost though as you will know if you’re prepared for the real thing. Gaining the certification needed to work in this field will pay off well in your surgical tech salary and the job opportunities that are available to you.