The majority of a surgical technician's key tasks involve delivering assistance during surgical operations. They will mainly help set up and sterilize operating rooms, arrange the required equipment, and help doctors during surgeries. Their tasks may include stocking and sterilizing surgery supplies and equipment, prepping patients for surgery, preparing operating rooms for surgery, passing instruments to surgeons throughout operations, maintaining a sterile environment, and counting supplies.
Utah Surgical Technologist Schools
As in many health care careers, surgical technologists have a clear path to entering their career. They may either earn an associate degree or a postsecondary certification to help prepare for the job. The surgical tech schools in Utah listed here offer programs of interest to anyone considering a future as a surgical technologist.
- AmeriTech College-Provo: An accredited college specializing in healthcare career training sine 1979, AmeriTech is known for its accelerated nursing program, which is one of the largest and highest-ranking nursing programs in Utah.
- Davis Applied Technology College: Focusing on teaching the skills students will need to enter a diverse and constantly changing career landscape, Davis Applied Technology College has a job placement rate of over 97 percent in some programs. Instructors have extensive industry work experience that lets them create lesson plans that are both student-centered and job relevant.
- Dixie State University: Built on the site of the first pioneer encampment in St. George in 1911, Dixie State University has 54 undergraduate programs as well as 25 baccalaureate programs and an enrollment of 8,350 students annually.
- Salt Lake Community College: Serving 61,150 students each year with an average class size of 20, Salt Lake Community College has over 120 areas of study with 73 percent of its students successfully transferring to a four-year institution.
- Stevens-Henager College: With a history of over 120 years, Stevens-Henager College concentrated on crafting degree programs to be not only career-specific, but also focused on the adult learner that is returning to school to further their career.
What to Expect from Utah Surgical Tech Programs
Generally speaking, a combination of technical knowledge coursework, general skills, and some amount of in-field education are some things to expect from a Utah surgical tech program. Some programs can take anywhere from several months to two years to complete. Courses are bound to vary across each program, but you can expect to develop some broad skills regardless of where you study, including:
- Physical stamina
- Being detail-oriented
- Stress-management skills
The above skills could play a central function in succeeding as a surgical technologist.
The surgical technology program will likely include such technical knowledge coursework as courses in medical terminology, anatomy, pharmacology, biology, and other topics. Specific training focuses may include setting up technical or robotic equipment, methods for sterilizing equipment, guaranteeing the care and safety of patients, as well as preventing and controlling infections should they occur.
Utah Surgical Technician Certification
Mandatory surgical technologist certification is legally necessary in the states of Illinois, Indiana, New Jersey, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas, but is not required in Utah. A possible advantage of gaining certification is that employers might be more likely to employ candidates with certification than ones without it as it may demonstrate an advanced understanding of the various tasks involved in this career.
Surgical technicians have several different options for obtaining certification that is nationally recognized. The "Certified Surgical Technologist (CST)" certification is bestowed by The National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting. It requires both passing an exam and completing an accredited program.
Surgical technicians may also benefit from the "Tech in Surgery - Certified (NCCT)" certification granted by the National Center for Competency Testing. This particular certification may appeal to a wider range of applicants as it does not necessarily require completing an accredited formal education program. Instead, applicants can qualify through work experience or military training as well as several other paths. While qualification may be easier, gaining certification does still involve testing crucial skills as well as passing an exam.
Surgical technologists who have obtained certification through either of these programs will be required to participate in continuing education in order to maintain their certification.
Obtaining CPR, basic life support, or both of these certifications may strengthen the resume of a surgical tech, as many positions might require technicians to be certified as such.
Resources for Surgical Technicians in Utah