Refresher courses for surg tech

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StacieT in TN

71 months ago

Does anyone have any information on refresher courses to help someone prepare for the certifying exam for Surgical Technologist? When I graduated from school in 2002 certification wasn't required in my state. It has since become a requirement and I have always felt like i have kinda sold myself short by not getting it.I now have been out of school quite a while and feel a refresher course would benefit me greatly. I am having a terrible time finding something of this nature. Back when I was a member of AST and received the magazines there were ads in the back of the magazine offering refresher courses, I don't have those issues any longer. Any information you could give me would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

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StacieT in TN

71 months ago

Was 2005 the last time that you have taken the exam because I have heard that just since Jan 07 the testing format has changed and there are even fill in the blank questions. I have an alexanders book but it was from at least 2001 because that's the year I started taking the surg tech course. I wonder how much that book has changed since then? Thanks

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Cynical Panic in Chattanooga, Tennessee

71 months ago

Where did you get your information that there are fill in the blanks on the test? I have never heard this. As a matter of fact, I was told that it was multiple choice. Even the study guides tell you that.

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Stacie T in Paris, Tennessee

71 months ago

I read that about the fill in the blank somewhere on this web forum. I also know that some of the RN tests are also fill in the blanks. I know a friend of mine took the test last Janurary and it was all still multiple choice but I did read on several different posts on this forum that they had changed it. I can't recall exactly what topics those comments were under though, I sat one night and went through a bunch of the topics.

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StacieT in TN

71 months ago

Cynical Panic in Chattanooga, Tennessee said: Where did you get your information that there are fill in the blanks on the test? I have never heard this. As a matter of fact, I was told that it was multiple choice. Even the study guides tell you that.

I read this information on the discussion that is titled " Has anyone taken the certification test" by Jennifer E in Fredericksburg, Virginia. there are lots of replys to that title and the information I got was by a Sarah in Tulsa, oklahoma She posted a reply 2 months ago that stated the test format was changing and she had heard there was some fill in the blank, she then also posted another reply 25 days ago that stated the whole testing format had a new layout effective Aug 1st and anyone that could possibly take it before that date was reccommended to do so. That was posted under the same discussion, just scroll down a little further. That's where I got the information.

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dCOQMAR in Newark, New Jersey

70 months ago

I graduated in 2006 from Star Institute and have been looking for a job since. I need to take a refresher course for my certification exam. I need information regarding where, when, and how long to take the refresher course and take the cert exam.
Didier Coqmar

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StacieT in TN

70 months ago

dCOQMAR in Newark, New Jersey said: I graduated in 2006 from Star Institute and have been looking for a job since. I need to take a refresher course for my certification exam. I need information regarding where, when, and how long to take the refresher course and take the cert exam.
Didier Coqmar

I still haven't found anything. I have came across a few "accelerated" programs that are for people that haven't been through an actual course and were on the job trained and for people who didn't attend accreditied programs. Neither applies to myself so I am still on the look out. All I have been able to come up with is to study my dated books or buy all new ones and read them myself and prepare myself for the exam.

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k_burciaga in Chandler, Arizona

70 months ago

Hello i just moved to Chandler az and looking for a private scrub tech job with a plastic surgeon. Does anyone have any ideas where to look?

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Surg Tech NJ in Flemington, New Jersey

60 months ago

Hi susanbu...did you go to school to be a surg tech already? I think you may have to re-take the test if you took it so long ago...check it out...call someone...go to www.ast.com. I am a surg tech (certified) and most hospitals are on a freeze now cuz of the economy. I'm trying to find a day job for a plastic surgeon or oral surgeon cuz the long hours at the hospital killed my feet. I NEVER stood for so long in my entire life and I'm older so my feet were fried after a few hours. I had to be in excruciating pain all the rest of the day...
Good luck

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Surg Tech NJ in Flemington, New Jersey

60 months ago

k_burciaga in Chandler, Arizona said: Hello i just moved to Chandler az and looking for a private scrub tech job with a plastic surgeon. Does anyone have any ideas where to look?

I am looking in NJ if anyone knows of any plastic surgeons looking for a private scrub!

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susanbu in Knoxville, Tennessee

60 months ago

Thanks for your input. i am scheduled to take the test in jan 2010. There are plenty of jobs here, you just have to be certified. There are no review classes that I have found, plenty of books and studying on your own. i have a surgeon who i have been seeing for a hernia and he has let me come in and observe some prodcedures which has been great. Thanks for the support! Susan

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ronnie1211 in Cypress, Texas

58 months ago

Has anyone taken the surgical tech certification lately? Just curios to what type of question are on the test and what book should i study from.

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susanbu in Knoxville, Tennessee

58 months ago

I am scheduled to take it in two weeks! I have been studying from 2 books. One of them is the Complete Review of Surgical Technology by Emily Boegli and the review book from the AST . Just doing all the test questions I can get my hands on. Both books come with cd's that you can put in your computer and do the test, plus test questions at the back of each chapter. Susan

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louise kennedy in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

58 months ago

im a non-certified surgical technicia i've been looking for a job scense 2003,i've yet to find any jobs,i've completed my extern at penn.hospital at the time there were no jobs avilabile i had a interview at the hospital im currently working for but no luck they wanted me to have had up to date classes so there for im looking for a refresher course.

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susanbu in Knoxville, Tennessee

57 months ago

Lousie.....I have found several jobs, but you have to be certified. I think you may have to buck it up and take the test. I talked to a lady in or at one of our hospitals and she said that she would hire someone without any experience, but educated and certified...so I signed up to take the test. It's next week. Good luck! Susan

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ddm in Washington, District of Columbia

57 months ago

What did that lady mean by educated? I think a person who attends an accredited college for two years to get an Associates Degree is also educated.
I graduated in 2007. I couldn't start working at the time because of my visa. I have been looking for a job since july of 2009, but people just want EXPERIENCE. They don't even care if you are certified because I have a friend who is and have been looking for a job for a long time. They do not even look at your resume if you don't have at least a year of experience. I am so frustrated. I have considered the option of relocating, but it hasn't worked out. I was also thinking of taking the board exam, but I am starting to change my mind because I think I have spent enough money and time on this career that hasn't taken me anywhere.

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betsysargent in Virginia Beach, Virginia

57 months ago

I was certified in 1976 and worked for a two years but had our children and have been in ministry with my husband for the last 27 years. I need to get back to work and have contacted AST but with no reply. Are you saying I can take the test and get certified without a course.
My concern is that i studied before AIDS came on the scene and I know there are precautions now that were not in place then. Any suggestions? I love the atmosphere of the OR!

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Dan Frattinger in Winfield, Illinois

57 months ago

betsysargent in Virginia Beach, Virginia said: I was certified in 1976 and worked for a two years but had our children and have been in ministry with my husband for the last 27 years. I need to get back to work and have contacted AST but with no reply. Are you saying I can take the test and get certified without a course.
My concern is that i studied before AIDS came on the scene and I know there are precautions now that were not in place then. Any suggestions? I love the atmosphere of the OR!

Not to change the subject but I am having a hard time starting a new discussion. I am getting ready to start clinicals and while scrubbed in for Labs during class the Bouffant, along with mask and goggles, are making me sweat more than I thought they would. What is the trick, if any, to sweatin less. Once you start sweaitn it gets very ackward, goggles start to fog a bit, etc. IS there any trick? I know OR's are coller, but once those lights are turned on I know it can get hot.

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Stacie T

57 months ago

Dan Frattinger in Winfield, Illinois said: Not to change the subject but I am having a hard time starting a new discussion. I am getting ready to start clinicals and while scrubbed in for Labs during class the Bouffant, along with mask and goggles, are making me sweat more than I thought they would. What is the trick, if any, to sweatin less. Once you start sweaitn it gets very ackward, goggles start to fog a bit, etc. IS there any trick? I know OR's are coller, but once those lights are turned on I know it can get hot.

You can wet a lap sponge with your irrigation and lay it across your hand(s), or just put your hand in a bowl of irrigation (room temp). this always helps cool me off, you can also ask your circulator to put a cold rag on your neck, the problem there is 1, she has to make sure it's tucked good so if it comes off it doesn't fall onto your sterile field and 2, if you are still a student, chances are the circulator is gonna get aggrevated at you. Once you are out of school it's not so irritating to the circulators. Probably while you are still a student your best bet is to try the wet lap or the hand in the bowl of irrigation. I know it desn't seem like that would cool you off, but it does work.

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susanbu in Knoxville, Tennessee

57 months ago

I graduated in 1997, did not take the certification test and did not work. I joined the AST and signed up to take the test. I got two books and studied from labor day until last week and took the test on the 26 of Jan. I passed....I review old notes from school went thru the book for review questions and mock test questions and spent a couple of days in surgery observing also the books I bought had cd/roms in them with test questions and went over and over those questions, also spent a couple days in surgery observing and i passed. To join the AST you need to send in a copy of your diploma and then you can join and then you send in your application to take the test once you get that paperwork in then you schedule your test. There is a ton of info on the test, but the books breaks it down into sections which is helpful. You should get a response from the AST...I have found it worth it to join. If you are not happy with whoever you talk to hang up and call back and get someone different or ask to speak with someone else...it's not cheap and for the cost of membership you deserve to talk with someone who is helpful....Good Luck!!! Susan in knoxville

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susanbu in Knoxville, Tennessee

57 months ago

ddm in Washington, District of Columbia said: What did that lady mean by educated? I think a person who attends an accredited college for two years to get an Associates Degree is also educated.
I graduated in 2007. I couldn't start working at the time because of my visa. I have been looking for a job since july of 2009, but people just want EXPERIENCE. They don't even care if you are certified because I have a friend who is and have been looking for a job for a long time. They do not even look at your resume if you don't have at least a year of experience. I am so frustrated. I have considered the option of relocating, but it hasn't worked out. I was also thinking of taking the board exam, but I am starting to change my mind because I think I have spent enough money and time on this career that hasn't taken me anywhere.

What I meant is that you have an education....

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Ashley Bailey in Hudson, Florida

56 months ago

I am currently studying for my certification exam. I have heard that if you answer enough questions on the test correctly it will shut off before you complete it. Does anyone know if this is true? I also would like advice on which books have been the most informative? i am using the Surgical Technology Examination book by Appleton & Lange and also the Complete Review of Surgical Technology by Emily H Boegli.

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susanbu in Purcellville, Virginia

56 months ago

I have not heard that about answering the questions. If you stick to those 2 books and use the cd-rom that they come with you will do fine. I just took the test on the 26 of Jan and passed!!! Someone told me just to get a ton of test questions and keep going over and over them. good luck!!!

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Ashley Bailey in Hudson, Florida

56 months ago

Thanks Susan!! I have been getting frustrated because this test involves a lot more than they cared to teach us in school. We dont even deal with most of these things at all. My fiance is a doctor and he cant even answer some of these questions.

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ap1cahd@yahoo.com in Victorville, California

55 months ago

I graduated from a surgical tech school back in 1997.The school never obtained accreditation so it just shut down. I wanna take the test to receive my cert. What is your recomendation on study guides,and books to pass? Please get back, thanx,AJ

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susanbu in Knoxville, Tennessee

55 months ago

Dear AJ....I did the same thing...as a matter of fact graduated the same year as you. I join the AST and bought their book, AST Surgical Technologist Certifying Exam Study Guide Second Edition and another book Complete Review of Surgical Technology. They both come with cd to put in your computer for test questions. The best advice I got from my cousin who just took her boards for pediatrics is to just get your hands on as many test questions as you can and that's what I did. I took my test in January and did great. It was hard...but going over and over any test questions really helped. You have to spend time everyday going over something. I started after labor day and took my test in Jan of this year. Good luck...Susan

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movita williams in Denver, Colorado

54 months ago

I am in search of a surgical technology program refresher course.
Graduated from an accredited program in 1994. I have taken a couple of test since graduation. one in 2000 and another in 2004. I'm almost certain there has not been much of a change in techniques. multiple amount of our surgical instuments are pretty much the same and has been in continue use...such as the retractors:army/navy,balfours,and devers! Anatomically our body is still the same and it took a lot of time,skills and study for these instuments to be perfected without causing trauma to delicate body tissues.I try to keep in mind not to panic or become overwhelmed with newer technology they may or may not have come since my graduation in 1994. When I tested I was only a few points each time within a passing score. My test results conveyed my weakness to be in the intra-op and post-op phase,so I am searching for a program that will give me additional hands on in this area. I have been in touch with a recruiter that have given me limited info. over the phone,but have been very supportive in assisting me in setting up a schedule with a specific college so I can get more detail. Also I think I may have some of my AST magazines to further search for refresher courses if they are still available. There are surg.techs. on this forum that have the right ideas and I'm going to follow up. Thanks to you all!

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Cant find a job in Lake Worth, Florida

54 months ago

Maybe once we finally do pass the exam, we pull our resources and come up with a refresher course. Perhaps a cd version. We'd make more money selling that than scrubbing, or, looking for scrub jobs. I can't believe not one's thought of that (and did it) by now.

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KBOOTS in Irving, Texas

54 months ago

Is it required to attend a school before taking the exam? I know with some certifications (ie Pharmacy Technician) it's not required. However, I do have my bachelors in biology and am working a f/t job as well and have yet to find any programs that offer weekend/night classes so studying on my own and then taking the test would be my best bet. Just wanted to know before I spent thousands of dollars if there was an easier way to do this.

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Surgitech207 in Middletown, New York

54 months ago

kboots, the only way one can get certified without going to school is through NCCT. They require 7 out of the last 10yrs working experience, with documrntation of the cases you scrubbed on. Their web site is Ncctinc.com, however Texas does not recognize this certification.You can't learn this stuff on your own if you aren't even working in the OR.

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Cant find a job in Lake Worth, Florida

54 months ago

Without schooling, how do you learn the 1500 instruments and how to pass them? Who teaches you to put together/use a bookwalter???How do you learn to gown and glove yourself and a surgeon?? I wouldn't DARE walk into an OR without that basic knowledge. Also, without a schooling, how do you get externships? Initially, I used references from my externships to get my first job right out of school. Unfortunately, since the economy is so bad, hospitals and sx centers are not hiring where I live and its hard to find a job right now. However, My first job wasn't in a hospital, it was scrubbing for a plastic sx. Sometimes OR's can be a rough environment, especially for new scrubs, I wouldn't attempt it without going to school.

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Cdollie in Houston, Texas

54 months ago

Surgitech207 in Middletown, New York said: kboots, the only way one can get certified without going to school is through NCCT. They require 7 out of the last 10yrs working experience, with documrntation of the cases you scrubbed on. Their web site is Ncctinc.com, however Texas does not recognize this certification.You can't learn this stuff on your own if you aren't even working in the OR.

does New Jersey reconize this

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katstone in Knoxville, Tennessee

50 months ago

susanbu in Knoxville, Tennessee said: Dear AJ....I did the same thing...as a matter of fact graduated the same year as you. I join the AST and bought their book, AST Surgical Technologist Certifying Exam Study Guide Second Edition and another book Complete Review of Surgical Technology. They both come with cd to put in your computer for test questions. The best advice I got from my cousin who just took her boards for pediatrics is to just get your hands on as many test questions as you can and that's what I did. I took my test in January and did great. It was hard...but going over and over any test questions really helped. You have to spend time everyday going over something. I started after labor day and took my test in Jan of this year. Good luck...Susan

Susan, Have you found a job in Knoxville. I was a CST for 11 years and got out of it for awhile. I am going to take the test and get recertified so I can start to work again.

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susanbu in Knoxville, Tennessee

50 months ago

Yes!!! I passed in January and will start working middle of September! I am very excited and really nervous!!! I put in a ton of applications and even took a cna course thinking that would at least get my foot in the door. I am working at a hospital that is willing to train me "their" way and didn't blink when I didn't have the experience..they don't have to break any bad habits! I am very excited to be back in the hospital!!!

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amal_ayoub2002@yahoo.com in Darien, Illinois

50 months ago

susanbu in Knoxville, Tennessee said: Yes!!! I passed in January and will start working middle of September! I am very excited and really nervous!!! I put in a ton of applications and even took a cna course thinking that would at least get my foot in the door. I am working at a hospital that is willing to train me "their" way and didn't blink when I didn't have the experience..they don't have to break any bad habits! I am very excited to be back in the hospital!!!

how was the exam i am planing on taking it in the end of this year so was it hard????

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susanbu in Knoxville, Tennessee

50 months ago

The test was 220 questions. All multipile choice, but that just means the BEST answer is right there. go thru some practice test in books on line and cd rom's that's what I did. It was hard, but if I can do it after being out of the surgery room for 15 years and studied alot ...It can be done!! Good Luck!!!

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Neshawnia Washington in Fort Worth, Texas

49 months ago

The same here! I graduated in 2007 I worked at Children Hospital of Milwaukee,WI and Baylor All Saints in Fort Worth,TX. No luck at all. Onlyn thing to do is hgo back to school for something else.

ddm in Washington, District of Columbia said: What did that lady mean by educated? I think a person who attends an accredited college for two years to get an Associates Degree is also educated.
I graduated in 2007. I couldn't start working at the time because of my visa. I have been looking for a job since july of 2009, but people just want EXPERIENCE. They don't even care if you are certified because I have a friend who is and have been looking for a job for a long time. They do not even look at your resume if you don't have at least a year of experience. I am so frustrated. I have considered the option of relocating, but it hasn't worked out. I was also thinking of taking the board exam, but I am starting to change my mind because I think I have spent enough money and time on this career that hasn't taken me anywhere.

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amouli in Villa Park, Illinois

49 months ago

i agree 100% with you thanx

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Sammantha in Charleston, South Carolina

48 months ago

I'm a 2007 surch tech grad who did not get hired straight out of school so I went another route. I'm now interested in taking the certification exam and I'm also in need of refresher courses. I do have all my old books from school but everything is seeming to overwhelm me right now. I will look into the books you all have suggested and find some practice questions some where. Going through the AST site, there is a practice test for about $40, does anyone know where I can find practice test questions for free? Can anyone email me some questions? Also, to Susan, you have really given me inspiration to buckle down and finally take on this challenge that I have been dreading for 3yrs.

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Sammantha in Charleston, South Carolina

48 months ago

I want to join AST but it seems as if you have to currently be enrolled in school (a student) or currently be employed in the field. Is there another way to join?

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susanbu in Knoxville, Tennessee

48 months ago

Sammantha, I was not enrolled in school and joined the AST and I was not employed either, however, I made it known to them that I was studying to take the test. It is expensive to join, but in the long run to take the test...it is cheaper thru them. I dreaded it as well, and it was a hard test, but just slowly read your questions. I was fortunate that when I took the test I was in a room by myself and I could read the questions out loud to myself! I bought the test online and had another cd rom with questions on it. When you join the AST you get a magazine and there is usually a feature article dealing with a certain surgery and I was sure to those as well and take the test for ceu's, also went thru some old cases that I did and the papers I had to write. I think being only 3 years out.....you will do great! Thanks for the compliment....I appreciate it. Even if you are certified...it's still scary!!! But I love it...especially today when the case was a messy gi bleed!!! Good luck....happy to help with any other questions! Susan

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anitalg0729 in Fishers, Indiana

46 months ago

i graduated in june 2009,is there a cap on how long u have from graduating to take the test,it is expensive to join the ast and ive been out of work so i have not been able to afford it and know i need that tab bit of info......

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dragonfalls2 in El Paso, Texas

44 months ago

Dan Frattinger in Winfield, Illinois said: Not to change the subject but I am having a hard time starting a new discussion. I am getting ready to start clinicals and while scrubbed in for Labs during class the Bouffant, along with mask and goggles, are making me sweat more than I thought they would. What is the trick, if any, to sweatin less. Once you start sweaitn it gets very ackward, goggles start to fog a bit, etc. IS there any trick? I know OR's are coller, but once those lights are turned on I know it can get hot.

dont tighten so tight and use the defogger that your OR should provide, and for smelly jobs use peppermint (from your local health food store) liquid just a dab under your nose works great.

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geminibunny in Miami, Florida

29 months ago

Wow. Just about most of us are in the same boat!!! I graduated in 2005 in Miami. Scrubbed for about a year. Got married, had a child and have been out of the field for about six years. Now I wanna start back in the field (now that my daughter is five), and I'm having the hardest time ever. I need to refresh, I need certification, I NEED HELP!!! Does anyone know what books I need to study from, where can I take refresher courses in Miami and how can I become certified??? Any reply is appreciated!!

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Stacie T

29 months ago

As far as I know there are no refresher courses and the best information I can gather is to study the ast study guide. I still haven't taken my certification course due to some major health issues that have arisen for me but it's truly sad that there is nothing out there short of just retaking the course to help scrub techs. They changed the criteria for being hired so for those of us that went through school when it wasn't needed, and people really couldn't care less if you had it or not if we had to change jobs for whatever reason pretty well our only option is to retake the course. And why would anyone want to pay that much money to take the test, plus a day off from work without pay to take it when you didn't make one cent more for having it. Ugh, it frustrates me so much. I can scrub as well as anyone else can and it's just not fair that there's not more options for us.

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janetmcst in West Orange, New Jersey

28 months ago

The good news is that I have been doing a certification prep course through the school I teach for for the past 17 months. I've had great sucess with the pass rates of the students I have prepped. Due to the requirements in the state of New Jersy, I can see that many people are feeling the need for something of this sort. I am now offerng my prep services to any surgical techs who may be in need of this sort of tutoring. I would be happy to provide details and tell you about the money back guarantee that I will provide with this. I can be emailed at janetmcst@yahoo.com. I have been a CST for 17 years and an instructor for 4 years. Have been running certification preps for over a year and a half.

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Leticia Hughes in La Crescenta, California

27 months ago

Looking for refreshment courses to brush up on my skills. Been away for 3 yrs.

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Amouli in Burbank, Illinois

27 months ago

How about Chicago any body knows where I can find any place to do the same ??

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janetmcst in West Orange, New Jersey

27 months ago

For a true "refresher" course I would suggest contacting the career services dept. of the school that you graduated from. They should be able to provide so lab time for an update of hands on skills. Janet McInteer

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janetmcst in West Orange, New Jersey

27 months ago

For a "refresher" course (hands on) I would suggest contacting the school that you graduated from (career services dept.) and trying to book an appt. with the lab instructor so that you can get some hands on time. Janet McInteer

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