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Surgical Technician Programs in Kentucky

Surgical Technician Training Programs in Kentucky

Are you considering earning a surgical technician certificate? Choosing to work in healthcare could be a great decision for the future of your career. Healthcare is one of the fastest growing industries in the United States, and the demand for professionals at different levels of education is growing.

As a scrub tech, you may be able to work in fast-paced settings across different healthcare specialties. The first step is comparing surgical tech diploma programs in Kentucky to figure out which school best meets your needs.

Keep reading to learn more and reach out to surgical technology Associate’s degree programs near you.

What Kind of Surgical Technician Training Do I Need in Kentucky?

Like many other healthcare careers, the field of surgical technology has several paths you may follow to begin your career. Some students want to start working as quickly as possible, so they opt for surgical tech diploma programs or certificate programs. These programs typically last just one year, leading to the completion of about 30 credits.

The other option is a surgical tech Associate degree. This option is slightly longer, requiring two years of study and 60 credits. You may be able to transfer your credits to a Bachelor’s degree program if you decide to advance your education down the line.

Both programs require a significant amount of clinical work, so be ready to split your time between the classroom, the laboratory, and local surgical settings.

Getting Into Surgical Tech Schools in Kentucky

By exploring surgical technology schools in Kentucky, you can get an understanding of their admissions requirements and minimize the amount of time you spend preparing applications and essays.

One of the benefits of this career path is the fact that admissions requirements are fairly relaxed. Most schools do not have high GPA requirements. It is more important to meet the criminal background and physical health requirements at most Kentucky programs.

Admissions Requirements for Surgical Tech Schools in Kentucky

  • High school diploma or GED
  • Physical health screening completed by an approved doctor
  • Negative drug screen
  • Negative TB test
  • Up-to-date vaccinations
  • Completed criminal background check
  • Fingerprints
  • Proof of citizenship or legal residency

Kentucky Surgical Technology Training

After getting accepted to a surgical tech degree program, it’s time to jump right in and begin your education. If you attend an Associate’s degree program, you need to meet certain general education requirements.

These requirements typically include courses in mathematics, English, history, and social sciences. If you go into a certificate or diploma program, you may immediately begin your OR tech training.

Surgical Tech Courses in Kentucky

  • Introduction to Surgical Technology (6 credits): This course is typically required in the first semester of a surgical technician certificate program. It covers the professional duties of surgical techs, their role in hospitals and clinics, and their scope of practice. Depending on the school you attend, this course may include some time spent shadowing working surgical techs in a local hospital.
  • Orientation to Surgical Technology (3 credits): In this class, prepare for the demands of a healthcare career. You delve more into your role in surgical settings and learn how to take instructions from supervising surgeons and nurses. You may also start to explore the terminology and tools used in surgery.
  • Surgical Anatomy and Physiology (4 credits): To be as helpful as possible in a surgical setting, you must be able to respond to requests immediately. This means that you need a thorough knowledge of the human body and the scientific names for its components. The goal of this class is to teach you all of a human’s body parts and how they function.
  • Surgical Pharmacology (4 credits): A number of medications are given throughout surgery. If you understand how these medications work, you may be able to watch for complications or side effects. The content of this course focuses specifically on medications prescribed prior to, during, and after surgery.
  • Surgical Techniques (6 credits): As a surgical technician, your role is heavily restricted during surgery. Even though you do not perform or participate in surgeries, you must be well-versed in how different surgeries run and which techniques are used by surgeons. With this knowledge, you can provide surgeons with the appropriate tools and support throughout a surgical procedure.
  • Surgical Procedures (14 credits): Throughout your career, you should assist during dozens of different surgical procedures. Some are more common; these often make up the majority of your day. Others are more complex, and you may only assist with these procedures periodically. No matter which type of surgeries you help with, you must understand their outcomes and purposes.

Is It Possible to Earn a Surgical Tech Degree Online?

As you compare surgical tech programs, you may wonder if it’s possible to earn your surgical tech degree online. This is often a priority for students with family and career obligations. Unfortunately, surgical technology is one field where online study is not an option.

To qualify for certification in this field, you must have hands-on clinical experience. In addition, you must master certain skills in the laboratory. To meet these standards, you have to attend in-person courses.

How Can Busy Students Attend a Surgical Tech Program Online?

While you may not be able to finish your entire surgical tech degree online, you may be able to do some of your coursework online.

If you plan on attending a surgical technology Associate’s degree program, consider completing your general education classes online. In your surgical technology classes, you might be able to do some of your theory training online. Consult with a variety of surgical tech programs to fully explore your options. Some surgical assistant online programs have blended degree programs to meet the needs of busy students.

Paying for Surgical Tech School in Kentucky

Once you’ve selected a Certified Surgical Technologist program in Kentucky, it’s time to figure out how to pay for it. If you fall below a certain income level based on your family size, you may qualify for federal financial aid. You can find this out by filling out the FAFSA for the following school year.

From there, you may look into private scholarship options for surgical tech degree students. Consider running a scholarship search through Peterson’s. With a large search engine like this, you can easily keep track of deadlines, fill out scholarship applications, and look for different options.

Throughout the country, there are many organizations that provide financial aid to surgical tech Associate degree students. The Association of Surgical Technologists awards grants to its student members. You must be attending an approved surgical tech program to qualify. Another option to explore is the Accreditation Review Council on Education in Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting.

It’s time to find the right training program for you. Check out our list of Kentucky surgical technician training programs and reach out to schools near you.

Working as a Certified Surgical Technician in Kentucky

Once you decide to pursue a career in surgical technology, you may find that you have the chance to make a difference. Surgical techs are an important part of medical teams across Kentucky, making sure that nurses and surgeons can use their time efficiently.

Your daily work may consist of minor, routine surgeries or serious, life-saving surgeries. It’s likely that you’ll get the chance to participate in both throughout your career.

It’s important to get familiar with state surgical technician requirements before you start working in this field. Start delving into certification options in your final semester of school.

Kentucky Surgical Technician Requirements

There are very few states that license those working in the field of surgical technology. Like most other states, Kentucky does not have any licensure requirements for operating room techs.

While the law does not have any licensure requirements, you may find that many employers have certification requirements. Certification is optional, but it is an easy way for potential employers to assess your education and practical skills. Earning certification may make it easier for you to apply for OR tech jobs.

Certification goes through the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting. Once you finish their testing process with passing scores, you may become a Certified Surgical Technologist. They require proof that you’ve graduated from a CAAHEP-accredited school. Before you can take your certification exam, you must pay a $190 exam fee if you’re a NBSTSA member or $290 if you’re not a member.

Where are the Best Surgical Tech Jobs in Kentucky?

Depending on where you live in Kentucky, you may have many employment options to compare as you start your job search.

Many OR tech openings are in hospitals. Hospitals may give you the opportunity to get experience in a variety of specialties. If you work as a float OR tech, you may move between different departments as their surgical needs change. If you secure a stable position, you may be assigned to one specific department. Both options have their benefits. In a float position, you may get exposure to many hospital wings and get to choose where your professional interests lie. In the second option, you may become an expert in the surgical procedures of one specialty.

Outpatient care centers are another potential work environment. These facilities only handle routine surgeries, rather than emergency surgeries. Outpatient surgeries allow patients to go home the same day, so these institutions typically have a limited scope of practice. In an outpatient surgical facility, you may work more traditional hours.

Outpatient physicians’ offices are even narrower in scope, permitting OR techs to become experts in a handful of procedures. Typically, you work for a medical specialist in a field like dermatology or plastic surgery. These institutions may only have a few rooms for surgery, so you may see fewer patients per day.

Job duties vary from employer to employer. When you interview for positions, make sure to ask for more information about the typical day of a surgical tech and what your responsibilities may be.

Common Surgical Technician Job Duties in Kentucky

  • Check surgical rooms for cleanliness and clean rooms as needed
  • Check the stock levels of each surgical room and restock as necessary
  • Sanitize and stock rooms immediately prior to a surgery
  • Prep patients for surgery and wait for them while they are given anesthesia
  • Do instrument counts prior to surgery
  • Supply and clean instruments as needed
  • Dispose of bodily fluid waste and other biohazards as dictated by protocol
  • Do instrument counts to ensure that nothing is left inside patients

At all times, you must work only within your scope of practice. If you work in an area outside of your training, you may harm patients and open your facility up to potential lawsuits. The Kentucky State Assembly maintains detailed information on a surgical tech’s scope of practice.

2017 Kentucky Surgical Tech Salaries

The work you put into surgical tech courses may pay off in many ways. Two start, the job outlook for scrub techs is high all over the country. Between 2014 and 2024, job openings for scrub techs are expected to increase 15% in the United States (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2017). Salaries in Kentucky are in line with national averages. The average income for a Kentucky scrub tech is $42,140 per year (BLS, 2017).

Surgical Technology Resources in Kentucky

No matter which career path you choose, it’s important to make time for networking. When you attend surgical tech school, you may have the chance to network with students and instructors. It’s important to use these opportunities, since other students may be your coworkers in the future.

Whether you’re a new scrub tech or you’re still a student, you may be able to join the groups listed above. These organizations often accept student members, and many have financial aid programs. Make the most of your membership by attending continuing education programs, going to networking events, and receiving legislative updates on laws that can affect your work.

There are many ways to do meaningful work in the field of healthcare. If you work well in high-stress situations and you want to have a role in patient care, a surgical technician program could be the natural choice for you. It all begins now with your education.

Explore surgical tech courses and surgical technology Associate’s degree KY options. Contact schools that fit your needs to get more information.