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Career and Education Opportunities for Medical Equipment Technicians in Anchorage, Alaska

For those living in the Anchorage, Alaska area, there are many career and education opportunities for medical equipment technicians. The national trend for medical equipment technicians sees this job pool growing by about 12.8% over the next eight years. Medical equipment technicians generally prepare, sterilize, or clean laboratory or healthcare equipment.

The average wage in the general category of Medical and Dental Assistance jobs is $18 per hour or $36,874 per year in Alaska, and an average of $14 per hour or $28,965 per year nationwide. Medical equipment technicians work in a variety of jobs, including: sterilizer, surgical technologist, and equipment technician.

There are three schools within twenty-five miles of Anchorage where you can study to be a medical equipment technician, among four schools of higher education total in the Anchorage area. Medical equipment technicians usually hold a high school diploma or GED, so you can expect to spend only a short time studying to be a medical equipment technician if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Medical Equipment Technician

Medical Equipment Technician video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, medical equipment technicians prepare, sterilize, or clean laboratory or healthcare equipment. They also may perform routine laboratory tasks and operate or inspect equipment.

Medical equipment technicians clean instruments to ready them for sterilization. They also report faulty apparatus to appropriate supervisors or staff. Equally important, medical equipment technicians have to record sterilizer test results. They are often called upon to operate and maintain steam autoclaves, keeping records of loads completed, items in loads, and maintenance procedures performed. They are expected to attend hospital in-service programs pertaining to areas of work specialization. Finally, medical equipment technicians examine apparatus to uncover leaks, worn or loose parts, or other indications of disrepair.

Every day, medical equipment technicians are expected to be able to evaluate problems as they arise. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings. It is also important that they see details at a very fine level of focus.

It is important for medical equipment technicians to start apparatus and observe gauges and apparatus operation to uncover malfunctions and to insure apparatus is operating to prescribed standards. They are often called upon to maintain records of inventory and apparatus usage. They also disinfect and sterilize apparatus such as respirators and oxygen and dialysis apparatus, using sterilizers and washers. They are sometimes expected to purge wastes from apparatus by connecting apparatus to water sources and flushing water through systems. Somewhat less frequently, medical equipment technicians are also expected to organize and assemble routine and specialty surgical instrument trays and other sterilized supplies, filling special requests as needed.

Medical equipment technicians sometimes are asked to examine apparatus to uncover leaks, worn or loose parts, or other indications of disrepair. And finally, they sometimes have to record sterilizer test results.

Like many other jobs, medical equipment technicians must be thorough and dependable and believe in cooperation and coordination.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Anchorage include:

  • Dental Assistant. Assist dentist, set up patient and equipment, and keep records.
  • Medical Assistant. Perform administrative and certain clinical duties under the direction of physician. Administrative duties may include scheduling appointments, maintaining medical records, billing, and coding for insurance purposes. Clinical duties may include taking and recording vital signs and medical histories, preparing patients for examination, drawing blood, and administering medications as directed by physician.
  • Psychiatric Aide. Assist mentally impaired or emotionally disturbed patients, working under direction of nursing and medical staff.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Medical Equipment Technician Training

University of Alaska Anchorage - Anchorage, AK

University of Alaska Anchorage, 3211 Providence Drive, Anchorage, AK 99508. University of Alaska Anchorage is a large university located in Anchorage, Alaska. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 16,649 students and an admission rate of 68%. University of Alaska Anchorage has an associate's degree program in Medical/Clinical Assistant which graduated twenty-six students in 2008.

Charter College - Anchorage, AK

Charter College, 2221 E Northern Lights Blvd Ste 120, Anchorage, AK 99508. Charter College is a small college located in Anchorage, Alaska. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 770 students. Charter College has a one to two year and an associate's degree program in Medical/Clinical Assistant which graduated six and zero students respectively in 2008.

Career Academy - Anchorage, AK

Career Academy, 1415 E Tudor Road, Anchorage, AK 99507-1033. Career Academy is a small school located in Anchorage, Alaska. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 297 students. Career Academy has a one to two year program in Medical/Clinical Assistant which graduated 149 students in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Certified Flexible Endoscope Reprocessor: The CBSPD is committed to the certification of healthcare sterile processing and distribution personnel regardless of their workplace setting.

For more information, see the Certification Board for Sterile Processing and Distribution website.

Biomedical Electronics Technician: Biomedical electronics technicians are expected to obtain knowledge of the principles of modern biomedical techniques, the proper procedure in the care, handling and maintenance of biomedical equipment and to display an attitude/behavior expected of an electronics technician who works in a hospital or healthcare environment.

For more information, see the ETA International website.

Certified Registered Central Service Technician: The Association's certification programs are the most highly recognized for quality and comprehensiveness within the healthcare industry.

For more information, see the International Association of Healthcare Central Service Materiel Management website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Anchorage, Alaska

Anchorage, Alaska
Anchorage, Alaska photo by File Upload Bot

Anchorage is located in Anchorage Municipality County, Alaska. It has a population of over 279,243, which has grown by 7.3% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Anchorage, 89, is well below the national average.

The top three industries for women in Anchorage are health care, educational services, and public administration. For men, it is construction, public administration, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 20 minutes. More than 28.9% of Anchorage residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.2%, is higher than the state average.

Anchorage is home to the Chugach and the Black Bear Campground as well as Baxter Bog Park and Alaska Railroad Power Reserve. Visitors to Anchorage can choose from Courtyard Anchorage, Creekwood Inn and The Voyager Hotel for temporary stays in the area.