Sterile processing pertains to the cleaning, inspection, and disinfection of devices used in medical procedures. The sterilization department works behind the curtains to make sure that the equipment and devices used in medical procedures are clean and safe to use for critical medical procedures. This is one of the major responsibilities of the healthcare professionals like doctors and nurses for conducting safe and secure surgeries as well as other medical procedures.
The technicians in sterile processing departments work in a high stake environment, as they are responsible for the safe and secure procurement of instruments that are used in a number of medical processes. The question is – How much can a Sterile Processing Technician make? Before that, let talk about:
According to a recent estimate at the National Center for Biotechnology Information, 1.7 million U.S. citizens are affected by “Hospital-acquired infections” every year, and 25% of those are specifically associated with surgical site infections.
Medical workers over the years have been practicing intensive care while handling sterilization, to prevent hospital-acquired infections. This ensured a lower rate of patients acquiring such infections but there is still a lot that must be done to make it safer, especially in times of COVID-19 pandemic. Precision, adept skills, attention to detail and a focused approach are essential when it comes to fixing errors and preventing hospital-acquired infections, especially for sterile processing professionals.
Sterilization is an effective way of reusing medical equipment and instruments, which is otherwise an expensive proposition in an already expensive industry. Therefore, sterilization of medical equipment is preferred all across the globe, which in turn marks it an important part of surgical and other medical procedures. Technicians with an adept skillset of sterilizing equipment are sought after by a number of healthcare institutes and hospitals.
Excelling and moving up the ladder is relatively easy in this field as compared to other medical procedures which require years and years of in-depth research and study to stand out at the entry-level. Most sterile processing technician programs require a high school diploma for entry-level courses.
Good performance at the entry-level will catalyze the growth of sterile processing professionals towards acquiring managerial and other supervisory positions. Sterilizing technicians and professionals advance into supervisory positions, like lead tech or department manager if they excel in their entry-level positions.
With the medical field being one of the fastest-growing sectors in the United States there will be plenty of sterile processing technician jobs in the medical field. As the fear of Covid-19 persists, the requirements for sterile technicians have increased exponentially and the field offers a great prospect for the future.
Apart from the opportunity to work at hospitals, surgery centers, and various laboratories, a qualified and skillful sterile technician can take up any of the following roles:
As per Glassdoor the average sterile processing technician salary at an entry-level position varies from $40,000 to $52,000 per year. As per Indeed the average salary for a sterile processing technician is $26.96 per hour in the United States.
Even though the work done by sterile professionals has always been vital in the smooth functioning of the medical industry, the onset of COVID-19 has made it even more important. It has helped us to realize the importance of personal hygiene, protection, and awareness of the surroundings when it comes to the spread and transmission of diseases.
The scope of sterile processing technician jobs is bound to grow and it is a beneficial option for students venturing out in the professional world and other candidates with an interest and inclination towards the medical industry. Moreover, Sterile processing is a well-paying career in the healthcare industry.