Surgical Technician Programs in Louisiana
Surgical Technician Training Programs in Louisiana
Has working in health care always been a goal of yours? If so, it’s time to start exploring options in Louisiana. As health care laws have evolved in recent years, the country has seen a surge in demand for healthcare professionals. This is expected to continue as states adjust to their growing patient base. Louisiana, like many other rural states, has been heavily affected by new healthcare laws.
By earning a surgical technician certificate at one of the many Louisiana surgical technology colleges located throughout the state, you could make a difference.
Find out more by contacting surgical tech diploma programs near you.
What Kind of Surgical Technician Training Do I Need in Louisiana?
Surgery is a growing area of focus in healthcare. As the aging population grows, the amount of complex health problems affecting the country has increased. Many problems can be handled by routine or complex surgeries, and scrub techs are an important part of these procedures. With a surgical technology Associate’s degree or surgical technician certificate, you may have the in-depth knowledge needed to work alongside surgeons in different specialties.
Getting Into Surgical Tech Schools in Louisiana
Admissions requirements should be among the first criteria you look at when comparing surgical tech school options. Depending on your grades and prior experience, you may have to strike certain schools from your list. As a general rule, though, surgical tech Associate programs have practical, attainable admissions standards.
You must have your high school diploma before beginning your training, but you generally do not need any postsecondary training. Other requirements focus mainly on your physical health and your criminal background.
Admissions Requirements for Surgical Tech Schools in Louisiana
- Clear background check without any disqualifying convictions
- Proof of residency or citizenship
- High school diploma or GED
- Approved physical exam
- Proof of vaccinations
- Negative drug screen
- Negative TB skin test
Louisiana Surgical Technology Training
As you explore different surgical tech programs, you may see that each school has different surgical technician requirements. Most schools decide graduation requirements based on the type of program you attend.
If you go into a surgical tech Associate program, you need a minimum of 60 credits to graduate. Some schools require more clinical work, so you may be expected to earn up to 70 credits by graduation.
The other options are surgical tech diploma programs and certificate programs. These options overlap in many ways. Usually, you have to earn 30 credits by the time you finish your training. Unlike Associate’s degree programs, diploma and certificate options do not require any general education. This lets you jump right into surgical tech courses.
Surgical Tech Courses in Louisiana
- General Microbiology (4 credits): Surgery presents a number of risks to the patient. A common risk is infection, since many microbes live in hospital settings. A strong understanding of microbiology can help you protect patients and keep the environment sterilized for their benefit. This course covers how disease begins and spreads.
- Human Anatomy and Physiology (4 credits): Regardless of where you end up working, you may assist with surgeries on different parts of the body. To provide the right tools and supplies to doctors, you must know where they are operating and which types of tools are used in each type of surgery. A thorough knowledge of how the body works and the Latin names for each body part is a good place to start.
- Medical Terminology (3 credits): As an OR tech, you may work under the direction of nurses, physicians, and surgeons. To respond quickly to requests, you need to understand medical terminology and know how to use it correctly.
- Surgical Technology Fundamentals (3 credits): In this introductory course, learn about what surgical technicians do and what their job is in the operating room. Most surgical tech degree programs require a course similar to this one, since it gives students a chance to ensure that they are in the right program for their professional interests.
- Surgical Procedures (3 credits): Throughout your surgical technician program, you may take several courses that focus on different procedures. As you become more experienced, you may move on to more complex and demanding procedures.
- Surgical Technology Skills (2 credits): The same skills and techniques are used in surgeries of all complexities and outcomes. In this class, you may learn the theory of surgical technology before practicing techniques in the laboratory.
Are There Any 100% Online Surgical Tech Programs?
Online study is a convenient option for students in many areas of study, but surgical assistant online programs are not a viable option for you. In most healthcare careers, you need clinical experience to qualify for certification and start working. This is true for surgical technology, and you can’t get practical experience when you earn your surgical tech degree online.
If I Can’t Study Online, What Can I Do to Finish My Degree?
While you may not be able to attend your entire certified surgical tech program online, you may have some options that let you fit your education into your busy schedule. Look for blended programs that combine online theory study and in-person clinical education. When you go this route, you can limit your time spent on in-person training and finish the theory part of your surgical tech Associate’s degree online.
Paying for Surgical Tech School in Louisiana
After you have narrowed down your list of surgical technology Associate’s degree programs, you may be ready to start applying for financial aid. First, go to the Department of Education website and find your school code. With this information, you can compare the cost of attendance across different schools and pick which school is the best option for you. You can then fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid to find out if you qualify for federal student aid.
Private scholarships may be based on financial need, academic merit, or a combination of the two. Peterson’s is a good resource to explore, since it compiles scholarships from hundreds of different sources. You can also look into industry-specific resources, such as the Association of Surgical Technologists.
Is it time to take your education to the next level?
Use our list of surgical technology training programs in Louisiana to request information from surgical tech school options in your area.
Working as a Certified Surgical Technician in Louisiana
Your education is behind you and you are ready to put your OR tech skills to use in a local healthcare facility. One of the benefits of getting certified in this area is the fact that Louisiana is home to hundreds of healthcare institutions with staffing shortages. You may use your time spent in clinical rotations to figure out which clinical setting is a good fit for you. This information may guide your job search as you get close to graduation.
Louisiana Surgical Technician Requirements
When you started learning about healthcare jobs, you may have noticed that many career paths are heavily regulated on a state and federal level. This isn’t the case for those who attend surgical tech programs. Only a handful of states regulate this field, leaving it up to employers to decide how much training and education scrub techs need. Louisiana does not have any licensing or certification requirements in place.
Despite this, many Louisiana employers would rather hire scrub techs who have earned certification. You must submit your application to the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting. They check your application to ensure that you have graduated from a CAAHEP-accredited school and completed the necessary amount of clinical hours. You may then schedule your certification exam. Members only pay a $190 testing fee; the fee jumps to $290 for non-members. You must renew every four years and earn 60 continuing education credits during each renewal cycle.
Where are the Best Surgical Tech Jobs in Louisiana?
As noted, there are many settings where Certified Surgical Technologists are employed. Ideally, you should get experience in several different settings while still a student. You can compare the work environments you encounter and decide which one is a long-term option for you.
You may find that many Certified Surgical Technologist job openings are at hospitals. Hospitals are some of the largest healthcare employers in Louisiana, and they are one of the most common places for surgeons to work. As a result, the demand for OR techs is growing. If you have experience in a particular department, you may be assigned to that department on a full-time basis.
If you are new to surgical assisting and your facility is small, you may serve as a float tech. Float surgical techs move between hospital departments, based on the needs of the hospital during each shift. These positions often require on-call shifts. Hospitals handle emergency surgeries, so be prepared to work irregular hours. To be ready for surgery at any given time, hospitals often keep surgical technicians staffed around-the-clock. Your schedule may include nights, weekends, and holidays.
You may look into outpatient operating room tech positions as well. Your surgical tech degree could put you in a position to work more regular hours at an outpatient clinic or physician’s office. Outpatient facilities may be specialized or general in nature. Since they do not keep patients overnight or for extended periods of time, they are limited in terms of which surgeries they accommodate. This may give you the chance to become extremely experience in a handful of common surgical procedures.
Common Surgical Technician Job Duties in Louisiana
- Touch base with on-shift surgical tech to learn about upcoming surgeries and patients that need care
- Check all surgical rooms in your wing to ensure that they are fully stocked and sanitized
- Check up on patients to see if they need pain meds, adjustments, or other assistance
- Report to supervising nurse or surgeon for responsibilities
- Prepare patients for surgery and wait with them in the surgical room
- Clean and prep surgical rooms prior to surgery
- Remain nearby during surgical procedures to provide instruments, clean up, and assist in communication
- Perform instrument and equipment counts to verify that nothing has been left inside the patient
- Clean, sterilize, and put away instruments
- Complete paperwork
- Check up on patients after surgery to watch for complications
It’s important to know exactly what you are allowed to do as an operating room tech. While this position does give you healthcare training, you aren’t permitted to offer medical care independently, perform diagnostic services, or make independent patient care decisions. Through the Louisiana State Assembly, you can stay up-to-date on the scope of practice for surgical technicians in your state.
Louisiana Surgical Tech Salaries in 2017
Throughout your career, demand for surgical technicians may fluctuate. Your income may also change throughout your career, although you may see it follow an upward trend as you become more experienced. Additional surgical tech courses and continuing education seminars may benefit your job growth. On average, Louisiana surgical technicians earn $38,930 per year (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2017). From 2014 through 2024, job openings for surgical techs may increase 15% across the United States (BLS, 2017).
Surgical Technology Resources in Louisiana
- Association of Surgical Technologists
- Association of Surgical Assistants
- Louisiana Hospital Association
As a surgical tech, it’s up to you to stay on top of legislative changes that affect your career. You also have to stay informed of changing surgical technician requirements in Louisiana. Joining local and national organizations is a great way to stay involved in this industry. Through your surgical technician program, you may be able to join student organizations that unite surgical tech students and put them in touch with industry professionals. Upon finishing your surgical tech degree, you may also want to join state and national organizations that allow you to broaden your professional network.
A surgical technician education may do a lot to change your career. If you are excited about the opportunities in healthcare and you have the concentration needed to work in a fast-paced setting, consider a surgical technology Associate’s degree Louisiana program. These programs offer the clinical training and theoretical education you need to effectively communicate with patients, peers, and supervisors.