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Career and Education Opportunities for Surgical Technicians in Palmdale, California

Many educational and employment opportunities exist for surgical technicians in the Palmdale, California area. Currently, 8,200 people work as surgical technicians in California. This is expected to grow 27% to 10,400 people by 2016. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for surgical technicians are expected to grow by about 25.3%. In general, surgical technicians assist in operations, under the supervision of surgeons, registered nurses, or other surgical personnel.

Surgical technicians earn approximately $22 per hour or $46,170 annually on average in California. Nationally they average about $18 hourly or $38,740 per year. Compared with people working in the overall category of Healthcare Technical, people working as surgical technicians in California earn less. They earn less than people working in the overall category of Healthcare Technical nationally. Surgical technicians work in a variety of jobs, including: operating room surgical technician , surgery technician , and certified surgical technologist .

There are seven schools within twenty-five miles of Palmdale where you can study to be a surgical technician, among 210 schools of higher education total in the Palmdale area. The most common level of education for surgical technicians is a post-secondary certificate. You can expect to spend a short time studying to be a surgical technician if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Surgical Technician

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

In general, surgical technicians assist in operations, under the supervision of surgeons, registered nurses, or other surgical personnel. They also may help set up operating room, prepare and transport patients for surgery, adjust lights and equipment, pass instruments and other supplies to surgeons and surgeon's assistants, hold retractors, and help count sponges, needles, and instruments.

Surgical technicians furnish technical assistance to surgeons, surgical nurses and anesthesiologists. They also hand instruments and supplies to surgeons and surgeons' assistants, hold retractors and cut sutures, and perform other tasks as directed by surgeons during operations. Equally important, surgical technicians have to scrub arms and hands and assist the surgical team to scrub and put on gloves and surgical clothing. They are often called upon to ready dressings or bandages and apply or assist with their application following surgery. They are expected to operate or monitor sterilizers, lights and diagnostic apparatus to insure proper operation. Finally, surgical technicians monitor and continually assess operating room conditions, including patient and surgical team needs.

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

It is important for surgical technicians to maintain proper sterile environments during surgical procedures. They are often called upon to maintain supply of fluids. They also order surgical supplies. They are sometimes expected to maintain files and records of surgical procedures. Somewhat less frequently, surgical technicians are also expected to observe patients' vital signs to gauge physical condition.

Surgical technicians sometimes are asked to count sponges and instruments before and after operations. And finally, they sometimes have to monitor and continually assess operating room conditions, including patient and surgical team needs.

Like many other jobs, surgical technicians must be thorough and dependable and be reliable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Palmdale include:

  • Cardiac Technician. Conduct tests on pulmonary or cardiovascular systems of patients for diagnostic purposes. May conduct or assist in electrocardiograms, cardiac catheterizations, pulmonary-functions, lung capacity, and similar tests.
  • Dental Hygienist. Clean teeth and examine oral areas, head, and neck for signs of oral disease. May educate patients on oral hygiene, take and develop X-rays, or apply fluoride or sealants.
  • Health Information Systems Technician. Compile, process, and maintain medical records of hospital and clinic patients in a manner consistent with medical, administrative, and regulatory requirements of the health care system. Process, maintain, and report patient information for health requirements and standards.
  • Medical Laboratory Technician. Perform routine medical laboratory tests for the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease. May work under the supervision of a medical technologist.
  • Medical Laboratory Technologist. Perform complex medical laboratory tests for diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease. May train or supervise staff.
  • Radiation Therapist. Provide radiation therapy to patients as prescribed by a radiologist according to established practices and standards. Duties may include reviewing prescription and diagnosis; acting as liaison with physician and supportive care personnel; preparing equipment, such as immobilization, treatment, and protection devices; and maintaining records, reports, and files. May assist in dosimetry procedures and tumor localization.
  • Radiological Technician. Maintain and use equipment and supplies necessary to demonstrate portions of the human body on x-ray film or fluoroscopic screen for diagnostic purposes.
  • Respiratory Therapist. Assess, treat, and care for patients with breathing disorders. Assume primary responsibility for all respiratory care modalities, including the supervision of respiratory therapy technicians. Initiate and conduct therapeutic procedures; maintain patient records; and select, assemble, and operate equipment.
  • Respiratory Therapy Technician. Provide specific, well defined respiratory care procedures under the direction of respiratory therapists and physicians.
  • Sonographer. Produce ultrasonic recordings of internal organs for use by physicians.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Surgical Technician Training

Glendale Career College - Glendale, CA

Glendale Career College, 1015 Grandview Ave, Glendale, CA 91201. Glendale Career College is a small college located in Glendale, California. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 150 students. Glendale Career College has a one to two year program in Surgical Technology/Technologist which graduated forty-four students in 2008.

Concorde Career College - North Hollywood, CA

Concorde Career College, 12412 Victory Boulevard, North Hollywood, CA 91606-9932. Concorde Career College is a small college located in North Hollywood, California. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 608 students and an admission rate of 100%. Concorde Career College has a one to two year program in Surgical Technology/Technologist which graduated thirty-nine students in 2008.

Premiere Career College - Irwindale, CA

Premiere Career College, 12901 Ramona Blvd, Irwindale, CA 91706-3746. Premiere Career College is a small college located in Irwindale, California. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 438 students. Premiere Career College has a one to two year program in Surgical Technology/Technologist which graduated 212 students in 2008.

American Career College - Los Angeles, CA

American Career College, 4021 Rosewood Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90004. American Career College is a small college located in Los Angeles, California. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 1,711 students and an admission rate of 85%. American Career College has a less than one year program in Surgical Technology/Technologist which graduated seventy-five students in 2008.

Newbridge College-Long Beach - Long Beach, CA

Newbridge College-Long Beach, 3799 E. Burnett St., Long Beach, CA 90815. Newbridge College-Long Beach is a small college located in Long Beach, California. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 420 students and an admission rate of 76%. Newbridge College-Long Beach has a one to two year program in Surgical Technology/Technologist which graduated forty-seven students in 2008.

Career Colleges of America - South Gate, CA

Career Colleges of America, 5612 E Imperial Hwy, South Gate, CA 90280. Career Colleges of America is a small college located in South Gate, California. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 1,087 students. Career Colleges of America has a one to two year program in Surgical Technology/Technologist which graduated twenty-eight students in 2008.

Everest College-Reseda - Reseda, CA

Everest College-Reseda, 18040 Sherman Way Ste 400, Reseda, CA 91335-4631. Everest College-Reseda is a small college located in Reseda, California. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs. It has 223 students and an admission rate of 44%. Everest College-Reseda has a one to two year program in Surgical Technology/Technologist which graduated sixty-seven 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.

Certified Surgical Instrument Processor: This exam deals only with surgical instruments and is for those that specialize in processsing of surgical instruments for all areas of their facility.

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

Certified Surgical Technologist: The choice to become certified demonstrates pride in the profession and a desire to be recognized for mastery of skills unique to surgical technology, as well as an on-going commitment to quality patient care.

For more information, see the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting website.

Certified First Assistant: The choice to become certified demonstrates pride in the profession and a desire to be recognized for mastery of skills unique to surgical technology, as well as an on-going commitment to quality patient care.

For more information, see the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Palmdale, California

Palmdale, California
Palmdale, California photo by Jamesb01

Palmdale is located in Los Angeles County, California. It has a population of over 143,197, which has grown by 22.7% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Palmdale, 132, is far greater than the national average. New single-family homes in Palmdale are priced at $218,600 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, three hundred seventy-four new homes were built in Palmdale, down from eight hundred thirty-nine the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Palmdale are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, transportation equipment, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 43 minutes. More than 13.3% of Palmdale residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 3.8%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Palmdale is 15.6%, which is greater than California's average of 12.3%.

The percentage of Palmdale residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 58.1%, is more than both the national and state average. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Southern Baptist Convention and the LDS (Mormon) Church.

Palmdale is home to the Ritter Ranch and the Palmdale City Library as well as McAdam Park and Tejon Park.