How Much Does Surgical Technician Make in the USA?…

Becoming a surgical technician is one of the most important healthcare professionals in the world. Although a tad tough career to pursue, it is quite a fulfilling and lucrative career – but how much does a surgical technician make? Here is all you need to know about the surgical technician salary in the USA.

During medical procedures, a surgical technician works alongside surgeons, surgical assistants, nurses, and anesthesiologists.

Continue reading to find all you need to know about surgical technicians.

What is surgical tech?

A surgical technologist is a health professional who prepares an operating room before surgery. Surgical technologists are also known as surgical techs, surgical assistants, scrub techs, or operating room technicians.

An operating room technician doesn’t do any direct medical diagnosis or treatment. They assist the surgeon and the first assistants by working on surgical care teams in hospitals.

Surgical technologists are important health professionals in the health industry. They work with surgeons in providing subtle operating procedures in the operating theatre just as pharmacists do with doctors.

A career as a surgical technologist may be right for you if you’re seeking a demanding position that comes with a lot of responsibility and demands a high degree of knowledge and skill. Our guide to the Full List of Best Medical Schools in the World might interest you to read.

What Does a Surgical Technologist Do?

The responsibilities of a surgical technologist include preparing operating rooms and patients for surgery and providing assistance both during and after the procedure. If you require surgery, a surgical technologist will likely see you both before and after the procedure. Surgical technologists support both inpatient and outpatient surgical procedures.

Surgical technicians are taught when enrolling in Medical Certificate Programs to be careful and well-versed in every aspect of surgery. To ensure that the procedure goes as quickly and effectively as feasible, they must be able to predict the surgeon’s next action.

Finally, to ensure asepsis (the avoidance of germs and other pathogens) throughout the entire operating phase, surgical technicians must have theoretical understanding and practical competence.

Duties of a surgical technologist

The most common tasks and duties of a surgical technologist include the following

  1. Pre-Surgery Duties
  2. During Surgery Duties
  3. Post-Surgery Duties

Pre-Surgery Duties

The surgical technologist prepares the operating room while the nurse and anaesthesia technician arrange the patient correctly on the operating table, and clean the skin around the incision site. They apply sterile drapes around patients and ensure that they have the right information about the patient.

During Surgery duties

As soon as surgery starts, a surgical technologist’s main responsibilities are passing surgical tools to the surgeon and doing other chores to help the surgeon, such as retracting the incision site open so the doctors can see what they’re doing better.

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Post- Surgery duties

The surgical tech helps remove the patient from the operating room and administers bandages to the patient after surgery. Along with housekeeping personnel and nurses, they are a part of the team that cleans the operating room (OR) after the procedure.

Work Environment

Surgical technologists work in hospitals, physician’s offices, outpatient care centers, and Dental clinics. Most Surgical technologists work full-time. In hospitals, surgical technicians may work or be on call on nights, weekends, and holidays. Additionally, they might need to work shifts.

How much does surgical technician make?

According to Salary Expert, the average surgical technician salary in the United States is $52,170, or $25 per hour. They also receive an average bonus of $736.

The average surgical technician salary by experience is as follows:

  • Entry level surgical technician (1-3 years of experience) earns an average salary of $38,584.
  • Senior-level surgical technician (8+ years of experience) earns an average salary of $63,476
  • Traveling surgical tech salary, In the United States, the average traveling surgical tech salary earns $71,411. Traveling Surgical Technologists earn the most in San Francisco, earning $107,377 on average, which is 50% more than the national average.

What are the Top Highest Paying Cities for a surgical technician?

Below is a table showing the top highest-paying cities for a surgical technician in the US:

CityAnnual Salary
San Francisco, California$79,230
San Jose, California$74,080
Vallejo, California$73,460
Santa Rosa, California$72,170
Sacramento, California$71,330

How Can I Become a surgical technologist?

  • Earn a high school diploma
  • Earn an Associate Degree
  • Get Professional Experience
  • Gain Certification
  • Volunteer at hospitals and clinics

Earn A High School Diploma

To become a surgical technician, you must first obtain a bachelor’s degree and complete the prerequisite courses required to apply to an accredited medical school. You may need to pursue a science degree with a focus on biology, chemistry, and math. You must also maintain a Grade Point Average (GPA) of at least 3.5.

Earn An Associate Degree

Aspiring surgical technologists should enroll in an accredited training program at a community college. When choosing programs, students are advised to verify that their program is accredited by a proper agency, such as the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES).

Get Professional Experience

It is advised to obtain as much practical experience as you can while pursuing a degree, whether through internships, job shadowing, or other activities. These experiences can have a significant impact on both professional relationships and practical expertise.

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Gain Certifications

Following graduation, graduates should be ready for one of the national certification tests offered by the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting. Although not all states require certification, having it shows commitment to the profession and greatly increases the likelihood of finding a job. 

Volunteer at hospitals and clinics

The goal of this step is to help you gain experience, which will be useful for your resume as well as determine whether you are truly interested in the medical field.

Surgical Technologist Certification

In the aspect of certification, there are two main certifications available for surgical technologists offered by the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA). These include:

  • Certified Surgical Technologist (CST) Certification
  • National Center for Competency Testing Certification

Certified Surgical Technologist (CST) Certification

To qualify for the CST examination, applicants must be a graduate of accredited surgical technician programs, surgical first assisting programs, or military training programs. Those who already have on-the-job experience as surgical techs may also be eligible, but must first complete the Accelerated Alternate Delivery Pathway before considering surgical technician programs.

National Center for Competency Testing Certification

This organization offers credentialing for several allied health professions, including medical assistants, phlebotomy technicians, and surgical techs. To qualify, candidates must be a graduate of an accredited surgical technologist program, surgical first assisting program, or military training program.

What Skills are Required to Become a Surgical Technician?

To become a surgical technician, you must have a combination of unique skills and personal qualities such as:

  • The ability to read complex aCT scans and other radiological data.
  • The ability to stay up to date on the latest surgical equipment and technology.
  • Dexterity with one’s hands
  • Anxiety and exceptional hand-eye coordination
  • The ability to work for long periods of time without taking a break
  • Ability to work under duress
  • The ability to work as part of a team
  • A strong sense of spatial relationships between objects.
  • Despite potential distractions, maintain undivided attention.
  • calm and collected
  • Good judgment
  • The ability to instill trust in others.
  • The ability to monitor changing conditions both inside and outside of the operating room.
  • In difficult circumstances, a supportive attitude toward the patient, their family, and the team.
  • The ability to lead and direct a group.
  • The ability to adapt to unexpected changes in circumstances.

Employment Opportunities for Surgical Techs

Professionals who complete surgical technician programs have a wide range of career options. As various types of surgical procedures require their services, the demand for qualified surgical techs will rise. Surgical technicians are employed by a variety of organizations, including traditional clinics, government agencies, and large big hospitals.

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The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts that the employment of surgical techs will increase grow 9 percent from 2020 to 2030, about as fast as the average for all occupations.

About 9,000 openings for surgical technologists are projected each year, on average, over the decade. Many of those openings are expected to result from the need to replace workers who transfer to different occupations or exit the labor force, such as retiring.

Is being a surgical technologist stressful?

Despite the fact that surgical technicians don’t perform surgery on patients, they are nevertheless directly responsible for tasks that have the potential to significantly affect a patient’s life, especially if something goes wrong. Making every effort to ensure a procedure goes successfully can put you under strain, but it can also have a great overall effect.

Is surgical technologist a good career path?

Yes. Finding out if this career path would be a suitable fit for you can be aided by retaining a fundamental awareness of some of the typical tasks.

How much does surgical technician make?

The average surgical technician salary in the United States is $52,170, or $25 per hour. They also receive an average bonus of $736.

How much does surgical technician make in california?

The average salary for a Surgical Technician is $38.03 per hour in California.


Although becoming a surgical technician can be difficult, it is a career that can be pursued one step at a time if you are determined. In addition to being a fun career to pursue, it is one of the highest paying jobs in the United States.

We hope this article has answered all of your questions on how much does surgical make.

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Finally, ensure you visit the Moden News homepage and also check out our Jobs in USA category, for more essential information.

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