How Much Do Surgical Techs Make an Hour?

If you’re considering a career in surgical technology, you’re probably wondering how much you can expect to earn. Check out this blog post to learn more about surgical tech salaries.

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Surgical Tech Salaries

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median pay for surgical technologists was $25.78 per hour in May 2019. Pay for surgical technologists can vary depending on experience, geographic location, and place of employment.

National Salary Data

The median annual salary for surgical technologists was $47,300 in 2016, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. On the low end, surgical technologists earned a 25th percentile salary of $37,590, meaning 75 percent earned more than this amount. The 75th percentile salary is $59,010, meaning 25 percent earn more. In 2016, 133,700 people were employed in the U.S. as surgical technologists.

Salary by State

The average surgical technologist salary is $47,300 per year, which is equivalent to $22.73 per hour. The median salary for this profession is right around $46,000 per year, so surgical techs who earn more than this are considered to be above average in terms of earnings. Salaries can vary widely from state to state, however. The following states have the highest mean salary for surgical techs

-California: $56,610
-District of Columbia: $55,750
-Alaska: $54,980
-Oregon: $54,250
-Nevada: $53,040

The lowest mean salary for surgical techs can be found in the following states:

-Mississippi: $37,290
-West Virginia: $35,780
-Arkansas: $35,470
-Montana: $33,280
-Hawaii: $32,840

Salary by City

The average hourly wage for a surgical technologist in the united states is $25.98 as of May 2020.1 The median annual wage for this occupation is $54,120, which means that half of all surgical techs earn less than this amount and half earn more.1 Surgical technologists who are paid an hourly wage earn between $12.14 and $42.86 per hour, while those who are paid a yearly salary earn between $25,280 and $89,160 per year.1

Surgical technologist salaries vary depending on a number of factors, including education, experience, location, and employer.1 Surgical techs who have completed formal training programs generally earn more than those who have not.1 Those with certification or other credentials may also earn more than those without these credentials.1 Experience is another important factor in determining earnings; surgical technologists with more experience usually earn higher salaries than those with less experience.1

Geographic location is another important factor that can affect earnings; surgical technologists working in urban areas generally earn more than those working in rural areas.1 finally, the type of employer can also affect earnings; for example, surgical technologists working in hospitals tend to earn more than those working in physicians’ offices or other healthcare facilities.1

The following table provides information on hourly and annual wages for surgical techs by state.2

StateHourly Mean WageAnnual Mean WageMedian Hourly WageMedian Annual Wage
Alabama$19.73$41,020$18.92$39,340
Alaska$27.78$57,770$26.77$55,710
Arizona$23.62$49,160$222 28470-287085270-593080250-5705902260-1179902200-116510360-114010270-538010200-542020230505503054056304640404082309090404061/210550801501072040031932006064910208304012402470371028040720910071280420126056002607332820111094090210201107233705102206150065051099091073760115064°15 40460838 40003429 16001885088058495700880160026701901180042010306 108025042092Expand heading in an informative and formal tone

Surgical tech job Outlook

Job Growth by State

The number of surgical technologists is expected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations through the year 2026, according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The BLS predicts a nationwide job growth rate of 15% for surgical techs over this 10-year period, which is nearly double the 7.4% growth rate projected for all occupations.

Some states will experience greater demand for surgical technologists than others. Here are the top five states with the highest expected job growth rates for surgical techs from 2016 to 2026, according to data from the BLS:

-Nevada: 37.5%
-Arizona: 32.4%
-Florida: 31.6%
-Georgia: 27.7%
-Texas: 26.3%

Job Growth by City

Surgical technologists, also called operating room technicians, work with surgeons and other medical personnel to prepare operating rooms for surgery. They also help transport patients to and from the operating room.

The highest levels of employment for surgical technologists were in the following metropolitan areas in 2012:
-New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA
-Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale, CA
-Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX
-Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL

Surgical Tech Career Paths

Surgical techs are medical professionals who work closely with surgeons and other members of the surgical team to ensure that surgeries are performed safely and effectively. Surgical techs typically have an associate’s degree in surgical technology, although some may have a bachelor’s degree.

Entry-Level Positions

If you are interested in becoming a surgical tech, there are a few different ways to go about it. The most common path is to complete an accredited surgical technologist program, which can be done either at a community college or through a hospital-based training program. Once you have completed your training, you will need to pass the national certification exam administered by the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA) in order to become a certified surgical technologist (CST).

Once you are certified, you can begin working in an entry-level position in a hospital operating room, outpatient surgery center, or other medical facility. In these positions, you will assist the surgeon and other members of the surgical team with patient care before, during, and after surgery. As you gain experience, you may be able to move into more specialized roles or take on additional responsibilities, such as scrubbing in for surgeries or serving as a circulating nurse. If you eventually decide to pursue a career in nursing, becoming a surgical technologist is a great way to get started.

Advancement Opportunities

There are many advancement opportunities for surgical techs. Once you have completed your training and gained some experience, you may choose to pursue a position as a lead surgical technologist or supervisor. You may also decide to specialize in a particular area of surgery, such as cardiothoracic surgery or neurosurgery. With additional training, you could even become a certified registered nurse first assistant (CRNFA) or a certified surgical first assistant (CSFA). These positions typically require at least an Associate’s degree in nursing.

Surgical Tech Certification

There are many ways to become a surgical technologist, but most candidates start by completing a certification program. These programs can be found at vocational schools, community colleges, and some universities. Certification programs typically last about nine months to a year, and they often include an internship component.

After completing a certification program, surgical technologists must pass a national exam administered by the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA). Once they have passed this exam, they are considered certified surgical technologists (CSTs). Some states also have additional licensure requirements.

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