Surgical Technician Programs in Georgia
Surgical Technician Training Programs in Georgia
In hospitals and outpatient surgical centers across Georgia, graduates of surgical tech diploma programs do their part to give patients evidence-based care, keep everyone on schedule, and create a sterile environment.
From common, non-invasive surgeries like mole removal to complicated, time-consuming procedures, surgical technicians can provide assistance during all types of surgeries. Clearly, being a skilled scrub tech requires lots of knowledge and practice with surgical tools.
If you’re interested in pursuing a surgical technician certificate and starting your career in the medical industry, this could be your chance.
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What Kind of Surgical Technician Training Do I Need in Georgia?
There are two ways you can become a surgical technician: working as a surgical technician for several years or attending an accredited surgical technician program. The first option is really only available to those who are already part of this field and who started working in it before education opportunities became widespread.
Now, the most straightforward and time-efficient way to become an OR tech is to attend a surgical tech Associate, diploma, or certificate program. Which surgical tech degree is right for you?
Find out by reaching out to surgical tech programs in Georgia.
Getting Into Surgical Tech Schools in Georgia
As you compare different options for your surgical tech degree, spend some time checking out each school’s admissions requirements. To maximize your chances of getting accepted to a program, make sure you meet or exceed the admissions standards. This type of degree doesn’t typically have strict admissions standards, allowing more students to explore their potential in the field of healthcare.
Surgical Technician Requirements for Admission
- High school GPA of 3.0 or better
- CPR certification
- Liability insurance
- Physical examination
- Immunization records
- Psychological Services Bureau entrance exam
- Clear background check and drug screen
Application Documents Required in Georgia Schools
- Immunization records
- High school diploma or GED
- Background check
- References from employers and teachers
Georgia Surgical Technology Training
To use your training time wisely, look for CAAHEP-accredited surgical tech degree programs in Georgia. Only graduates of CAAHEP-accredited programs qualify for certification in the United States, and becoming certified can really expand your career options.
On top of that, accredited programs meet the minimum clinical experience requirements set by certification agencies and employers. Whether you choose surgical tech diploma programs, certificate programs, or Associate’s degree programs, your curriculum should include an extensive amount of classroom theory education and clinical work. Laboratory courses help you build your knowledge of surgical instruments and tools while training your muscles to work with surgical tools.
Surgical Tech Courses in Georgia
- Introduction to Surgical Technology (8 credits): This first-semester course is designed to ensure that students are truly interested in working as an operating room tech after graduation. You may work with surgical technologists to learn about the work environment in this field, shadow a surgical technologist, and cover different areas of competency.
- Principles of Surgical Technology (7 credits): This is another core introductory course that prepares you more demanding courses in later semesters. By covering the principles of this field, you lay the groundwork for clinical rotations, medical terminology mastery, and studying surgical equipment.
- Surgical Microbiology (2 credits): In this class, find out why it’s so important to use aseptic techniques to maintain a sterile surgical environment.
- Surgical Pharmacology (2 credits): Medication is the focus of this class, which explores the various types of medication used before, during, and after surgery to sedate and manage pain.
- Surgical Procedures (8 credits): A lot of your surgical technology Associate’s degree focuses on your knowledge of surgical procedures. You may find out which surgeries are used for different body systems and diagnoses. The clinical part of this class usually lets you observe procedures and provide assistance with tools during common procedures.
- Surgical Technology Clinical Rotations (12 credits): The time you spend in hospitals and outpatient surgical centers is essential to your education. You should get to work in different settings under the supervision of multiple surgeons, since you never know what your supervising surgeon may ask of you or what they may expect of OR tech graduates.
What About Surgical Assistant Online Programs?
While you can take some courses online, you cannot earn your entire surgical tech Associate’s degree online. The amount of laboratory and clinical work required is extensive, and these requirements can’t be met in online surgical tech programs. Instead, consider completing your general education courses and theory courses online to make your schedule as flexible as possible.
Paying for Surgical Tech School in Georgia
After selecting a surgical technician certificate or degree program, you can apply for financial aid awards that make surgical tech programs affordable. Get started with the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, which estimates your school’s cost of attendance, your ability to contribute to your educational expenses, and the gap between your cost and your ability to pay. From there, it uses your financial need to award you unsubsidized loans, subsidized loans, or grants.
You may want to join the Association of Surgical Technologists as a student member, since student members can apply for exclusive scholarships. As an added benefit, becoming active in this group as a student gives you more time to build a professional network and get established in the local surgical technician community.
Use as many scholarship resources as you can. The more you apply for, the more you can diversify your funding and build a reputation with leaders in your field. A good starting point is Peterson’s, which allows you to search for scholarships in different areas and keep track of deadlines.
Working as a Certified Surgical Technician in Georgia
Where do you go after graduating from one of your community’s surgical tech schools? Atlanta, Georgia and other metropolitan areas are in need of surgical technicians, but don’t forget about Georgia’s rural communities. No matter where you decide to use your surgical tech Associate degree or certificate, you can make a difference.
Georgia Surgical Technician Requirements
Legally, you do not need a license or certificate to work as a scrub tech in Georgia. That’s why some employers require either certification or several years of surgical technician experience. However, it is difficult to qualify for a job via work experience since most employers now require education and certification.
That’s why your next stop is the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting. You can submit your application and proof of your graduation from an accredited program. If you’re a member of this group, you only need to pay a $190 testing fee. For everyone else, the testing fee is $290. The renewal period for a Certified Surgical Technologist is four years, during which you must complete 60 hours of continuing education.
Where are the Best Surgical Tech Jobs in Georgia?
Per the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the majority of surgical technologists work in hospitals. This plays out differently for each operating room tech, which is why it’s important to compare job listings, ask questions during interviews, and consider which positions make best use of your skills.
At a large metropolitan hospital, you may work for one specific department with a surgical technician opening. In this type of job, you become an expert in the specific surgical procedures done in one healthcare specialty. In a rural area or a small hospital, you may be a general scrub tech. This position is a bit more diverse, since it requires you to go wherever surgery is taking place and adjust to the department you work in on any given day. You may get a broader view of surgery in different specialties, rather than becoming an expert in one healthcare specialty.
Certified Surgical Technologist Hiring Requirements
- Graduation from an approved surgical tech school
- Ability to meet minimum physical standards, including lifting a minimum amount of weight, tolerating long periods of standing, and transferring patients
- Current certification as a surgical technician
- Availability to work a variety of shifts
Common Surgical Technician Job Duties in Georgia
Your surgical tech courses cover the full range of job duties in this position, giving you the chance to get experience in each task and meet the hiring standards of employers. Your coursework should also explore the scope of practice for an OR tech. Operating outside your scope of practice, intentionally or unintentionally, can cause errors in care and lead to significant legal problems for you and your employer.
For the most up-to-date information on your scope of practice, you should always go to the Georgia State Assembly.
Surgical Technician Job Tasks and Responsibilities
- Stocking surgical items, instruments, and materials in various rooms throughout a facility
- Counting and documenting materials to ensure that the appropriate items are ordered
- Setting up each operating room in preparation for scheduled surgeries
- Cleaning surgical sites on patients to prevent the spread of infection
- Sterilizing equipment and ensuring that your supervising surgeon has all the tools they need during each surgery
- Pass instruments to surgeon during each procedure
- Place items in the correct area for sterilization
- Count sponges and tools before a surgical site is closed
- Keep a sterile environment with aseptic techniques
- Sterilize tools after each surgery is complete
Georgia Surgical Tech Salaries
Georgia salaries are on par with average income statistics in other southern states. Your income may be affected by where in Georgia you live, how much experience you have, and which type of facility you work for.
Statewide, the average annual income is $39,350 (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2017). Many urban areas report higher average salaries, which may influence your job choice. Those working in the Athens area report an average income of $40,230 annually (BLS, 2017). In Atlanta, surgical technologists earn an average of $41,630 per year (BLS, 2017). The mean income for an Augusta surgical technologist is $39,620 (BLS, 2017).
Demand for surgical technologists is growing across the country, a trend that is expected to continue for several years. By 2024, job openings for surgical technologists may increase 15% (BLS, 2017).
Surgical Technology Resources in Georgia
By the time you finish your surgical technician program, you should have some type of professional network in place. This may include clinical site supervisors, surgical technicians you’ve worked with, and other graduates in your class. However, you should continue building your network after your time at surgical tech programs.
Georgia groups help you get involved in the healthcare community and learn about new techniques in this field.
Groups and Associations For Surgical Techs in GA
- Georgia State Assembly Fall and Spring Meetings
- Association of Surgical Technologists
- Association of Surgical Assistants
Do you want to spend your working years helping people, making a difference, and positively influencing your community?
The field of healthcare needs your dedication. Your path to a healthcare career can start right now when you choose a training program in your area. No matter where you are in Georgia, you may be able to choose from many challenging surgical tech programs that provide plenty of clinical experience.