A scrub tech is a medical professional that assists surgeons and other surgical staff under the supervision of a surgeon or registered nurse in the operating room. They may help set up the operating room, prepare patients for surgery or adjust equipment as needed.
Scrub techs have a variety of duties that they perform in the operating room. It is their job to ensure that there is a sterile field during all surgical procedures. They must wash and sterilize all equipment by using germicides and sterilizers. They count sponges, needles and other supplies before and after all operations. They scrub arms and hands before surgery and assist the surgical staff in scrubbing their arms and putting on protective surgical gear such as gloves. They hand instruments and supplies to the surgeon and the surgical assistants. They may hold retractors or cut sutures as needed. They monitor the patient and surgical staff to ensure that everyone has everything that they need. After surgery, they prepare bandages and other types of dressings for the patient and may assist with the application of these bandages. They operate and assemble lights, suction machines and other types of diagnostic equipment. After each surgery, they clean and restock the operating room.
Scrub Tech Salary:
The current scrub tech salary is about $42,000 per year or an hourly scrub tech income of $20. The pay rate for a scrub tech may vary due to several factors. Some of these factors include experience, education, specialty, location and more. Experience is one of the first things that any employer will look at when hiring a new employee. Scrub techs with little or no experience have a starting salary of $29,000 per year. As you work in the field, you will gain valuable experience and have the chance to increase your salary. With five years of experience the scrub tech salary will increase to $34,000 per year. After ten years of working in the field, the scrub tech income will increase to $41,000 per year. Fifteen years of experience will net you a scrub tech wage of $49,000 per year. The top level of experience is met with twenty years of experience. At this advanced level of experience the scrub tech salary is $59,000 per year. The amounts listed above are the averages for each level of experience, it is possible to make even more than what is listed.
Scrub Tech Education:
In order to become a scrub tech you will need to obtain a certificate or degree in surgical technology. This will take one to two years to complete. Courses of study will include anatomy, physiology, basic health care skills, computers and technology, logic, medical terminology, psychology, per-operative concepts, medical law, microbiology, surgical procedures, transition to practice, professional readiness and more. In addition to classroom learning, clinical rotations are also required as part of your college education. During these rotations you will be working in a real operating room with real patients. Although not required in most states, you may complete your certification test upon graduation. This may provide more job opportunities for you. To gain certification you will need to have graduated from an accredited program and passed your certification test. Certification must be renewed every two years with continuing education courses or by taking another exam.
Scrub Tech Work Environment:
The work environment for a scrub tech is typically within a medical facility or doctors office. Some may work in outpatient care facilities and some may work in surgical centers or hospitals. More than sixty nine percent of scrub techs work in hospitals. The environment is typically clean, sterile and well maintained. Scrub techs wear protective gear such as scrubs, masks and gloves. They are on their feet for the majority of their shift and must be alert at all times. They have to work well in a team environment and be able to handle unpleasant sights and odors. Scrub techs may also be exposed to various types of diseases so it is important that proper guidelines are followed. The work schedule for a scrub tech is typically full time work week of forty hours or more. Many scrub techs work overnight and weekend hours due to working in hospitals that are opened twenty four hours a day. Typical shifts for scrub techs may be longer than eight hours a day.
Scrub techs are an important part of the operating room. They ensure that all instruments and supplies are sterile and accounted for. Another great thing is the level of job security that they have. Within the next eight years there is to be an additional nineteen percent increase in the job market for surgical techs. What does this mean for you? It means that there will be an additional 18,000 jobs added to the job market for trained scrub techs.