Sterile Processing job

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anatomyrocks in Kansas City, Missouri

43 months ago

symempathy in Oakland, California said: Was anyone here a sterile processing technician before becoming a surgical technician?

I plan to take a sterile processing class in this Fall 2011 at Skyline College before I applied Surgical Technology for the Summer 2012. I think knowing a little bit about sterile field may help me when I'm in the ST program.

Does anyone have sterile processing job? Is it hard to find a job in that field? Thank you

I was a sterile Processing Technician and have every intent on going back to it. The pay isnt that bad depending on where you work as with all other jobs and everyone's experience is different. I enjoyed it and learned a lot. I am going to school for my surgical tech associates degree too. The good thing about doing sterile tech work first is that you get to know the instruments so when you become a surg. tech you wont have to worry about learning the them and your procedures too. I hear so many complaints about how the surgical techs lose jobs or get demoted because they dont know their instruments. So it just depends on how you decide to persue it...dont let the negative talk stop you. I saw a lot of negativity about being a surg. tech. but who cares I feel like those people arent in the right career field for them...you could go in an kick butt!

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Kim, Hornell NY in Norristown, Pennsylvania

43 months ago

I have 15 years experience as a sterile processing technician. I currently hold a Certified Sterile Processing and Distribution Certificate, and a postition as a lead sterile processing technician. I have a Bachelors Degree obtained in 2002.

I have found that many hospitals would prefer to hire a sterile tech off the streets, and train them. This is mainly because they would prefer to pay just above minimum wage. Most hospitals I have worked at claim they want certified techs, or very experienced techs, but they are unwilling to pay for what they get. I feel that there is a high turnover in this field due to empty promises made by hospital administrators. Also, sterile techs take alot of abuse and criticism from every department in the hospital, and mainly from the OR, as other staff members throughtout the hospital refuse to be accountable for their mistakes and find ways to blame SPD, even when the truth is clearly visiable.

Nurses with one class semester in infection control twenty years ago and no sterile processing experience will be hired as a Sterile Processing Manager, over someone educated and experienced as I am. Other Sterile Techs see this and realize they have nothing to aspire to in this field. I would never recommend this field to anyone!

I like the job, just not the blame, the politics, and lack of appreciation for sterile ptocessing techs, associated with this field of work. Without people to set trays and sterilize them there would be no hospital/surgeries !

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symempathy in Hayward, California

43 months ago

anatomyrocks in Kansas City, Missouri said: I was a sterile Processing Technician and have every intent on going back to it. The pay isnt that bad depending on where you work as with all other jobs and everyone's experience is different. I enjoyed it and learned a lot. I am going to school for my surgical tech associates degree too. The good thing about doing sterile tech work first is that you get to know the instruments so when you become a surg. tech you wont have to worry about learning the them and your procedures too. I hear so many complaints about how the surgical techs lose jobs or get demoted because they dont know their instruments. So it just depends on how you decide to persue it...dont let the negative talk stop you. I saw a lot of negativity about being a surg. tech. but who cares I feel like those people arent in the right career field for them...you could go in an kick butt!

Your encouragement means a lot to me. Thank you.
Besides the reason of being prepared for surgical technology, I want to get a job in Sterile Processing because of my personality. I'm not very outgoing; I'm more like an introvert. Taking care of patients indirectly is what I prefer. I like minimal interaction. Therefore, if I study surgical technology and realize that it's not a career for me, I can always work as a Sterile Processing technician.

Now I have to wait for two more weeks before I can enroll in the Central Services Technology class in Skyline College. I hope on that day, the class won't be full yet.

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cindyoh in Dayton, Ohio

41 months ago

Kim and all here, I appreciate forums like these and the honest comments. I was curious about a sterile tech job at my local hospital. Actually, they are advertising for 3 positions. I see what you mean about their saying they'd strongly prefer someone be certified but wondered if you could be trained on the job and might still be able to make an okay living. I went ahead and applied just to see if I can even get an interview and find out what the pay will be. I've been a medical transcriptionist for 35 years and still love what I do, but my profession is slowly being phased out, and I don't doubt that sooner or later my pay will be cut. I'm afraid that will happen before I can retire in about 9 years. At 57, I'm just not real keen to go back to school if not absolutely necessary. I worked as a lab clerk ages ago but strictly at the front desk and have no experience dealing with autoclaves, etc. I also want to keep working second shift, seems there'd be less pressure and flack that way; at least that was always the case when I worked in a hospital for 18 years and hated the short time I had to work the first shift.

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mynhii in Oakland, California

41 months ago

cindyoh in Dayton, Ohio said: Kim and all here, I appreciate forums like these and the honest comments. I was curious about a sterile tech job at my local hospital. Actually, they are advertising for 3 positions. I see what you mean about their saying they'd strongly prefer someone be certified but wondered if you could be trained on the job and might still be able to make an okay living. I went ahead and applied just to see if I can even get an interview and find out what the pay will be. I've been a medical transcriptionist for 35 years and still love what I do, but my profession is slowly being phased out, and I don't doubt that sooner or later my pay will be cut. I'm afraid that will happen before I can retire in about 9 years. At 57, I'm just not real keen to go back to school if not absolutely necessary. I worked as a lab clerk ages ago but strictly at the front desk and have no experience dealing with autoclaves, etc. I also want to keep working second shift, seems there'd be less pressure and flack that way; at least that was always the case when I worked in a hospital for 18 years and hated the short time I had to work the first shift.

It's amazing that you have been a medical transcriptionist for 35 years. You must have abundant experience. I haven't started my Sterile Processing class yet, but let's assume that I am certified and you're not; I'm quite sure you will be picked immediately.

I really want to be a sterile processor. This is the only health profession that fits my introvert personality.

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cindyoh in Dayton, Ohio

41 months ago

Funny thing about certification. They've pushed that in my profession for years, which is a hoot and totally unnecessary and as far as I know does not make much difference in the pay scale. You either have a good ear for transcribing what people say or you don't. I was a good typist before I became a medical transcriptionist. I'm an excellent speller and know grammar. Being an avid reader helped that. You don't have to know the why or how of everything, just have an idea of where to look for it. I took some courses at my local community college. I was willing to work second shift. I got the job easily and held it 18 years in the hospital. That was back in the day, and things are different now, unfortunately. I've known more than a few highly educated folks who just could not cut it on my job. The sad thing is these days, my job is being shipped off to India, where they will do it for pennies. I'm hopeful things might one day turn around and we go back to local work but it probably won't happen.

Are you thinking you really won't have to mingle at all with people as a sterile tech?? That's not what I understand at all; in fact, I'm thinking you might have to take a good deal of flack judging by what Kim says, and to be able to take it without getting too ruffled. I'm kind of a loner myself, but I know from experience that the hospital environment can be grueling at times and you have to be able to go with the flow in most departments. It's the shift you work that might make a difference. And if they hire me, they won't pay me what they would pay you, I'm sure, and would I actually be doing what you as an educated tech would be doing?

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ckelly in Temple, Texas

41 months ago

Please don't everyone jump on me for posting here. I am an Instrument Processing Manager and our facility only hires certified surgical techs for our department just because they have more knowledge of what the instruments are used for and have more critical thinking ability in that they can substitute instruments in trays if need be. I currently have a Supervisor position open for a Certified Surgical Tech with OR experience and STRONG leadership skills. We are 1 hour north of Austin and about 2 1/2 hours south of Dallas. Ft Hood is right next door. Any interested parties should email a resume to ckelly@swmail.sw.com I know it is discouraging looking for a job when you are a new grad, but be dilligent in your search. Lucretius says, "Constant dripping hollows out a stone."
Good luck

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mynhii in Oakland, California

41 months ago

mark in Raton, New Mexico said: I have been a surgical tech for years. I have work in both cs,cp and surgery.Well rounded makes for a good hire.
I now own a small staffing agency. One of my best employees came from a central processing dept. A great scrub, amoung other things.
Every one needs to start some where.

From your experience, is it easier to be hired in central service department or the OR? I'm not interested in becoming a surgical technician, but if it gives me a better chance to be hired as a sterile processing technician, I'll study it.

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mark in Colorado Springs, Colorado

41 months ago

i think central service. there are a few things you can do to improve your chances. Being a surgical tech is one.Also getting certified through one of the many programs available is a plus. The fee for these courses are much cheaper than surgical tech courses.10-25000 vrs 350-500$. The salaries will differ also. As a spd tech most start at 9-11$ an hr. Most surgical techs start between 16-18$.
One other thing you might look into is OJT. Some hospitals have in house programs to educate locals or employees that are looking for job changes.When I lived in Denver PSL Hospital had some training programs like that. Could be worth looking into.
CBSPD,AAME,are two programs that I know of for SPD tech trainig.
Hope this helps
mark

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Heather in Mount Morris, Michigan

40 months ago

I am starting sterile processing tech. classes in September, and reading all these posts I am a little scared. I want to work in a hospital, but I can only go to school in the evenings and no school around where I live offer associate's degree courses at night. I was planning on doing this for about 4 years, until I can go to school for vascular ultrasound tech. I am determined to succeed, I just don't know what the job outlook is for this, and if anyone will even hire me being just out of school. I hope so I already had a CENA certificate that went to waste and I would hate for this to go to waste as well. I am nervous, but I am already signed up so hopefully everything works out.

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Rigby in Dayton, Ohio

40 months ago

Does anyone know anything about the Central Supply Sterile Processing Tech. course offered through Purdue University. It is a distance learning program and can be accomplished via online or corespondance. Upon completion, you can sit for an exam IAHCSMM approved? " coI am quite interested in this and want to know if the outcome would be the same as a "campusurse--and if I would be employable.

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Rigby in Dayton, Ohio

40 months ago

How heavy is the equipmnent one would need to lift, push & pull as a sterile processing technician???

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foebony in Lansing, Michigan

40 months ago

Rigby in Dayton, Ohio said: How heavy is the equipmnent one would need to lift, push & pull as a sterile processing technician???

Bookwalter retractor, open heart set and Omni retractor are the heaviest I have seen 30+ pounds

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Rigby in Dayton, Ohio

40 months ago

Thanks for the quick reply

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Rigby in Dayton, Ohio

40 months ago

Also, hoping someone knows about the Purdue University course/IAHCSMM to be completed online. Will it get me where I want to be--or--is this course just intended for those already working in the field?

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Kim in NY in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

40 months ago

Rigby in Dayton, Ohio said: How heavy is the equipmnent one would need to lift, push & pull as a sterile processing technician???

How heavy is the equipment in Central supply that a Sterile Tech has to push, pull, etc is the question...yes?

I would say that depends on the hospital and the duties assigned to a sterile tech.

Instrument sets probably should weigh at their heaviest 25lbs, as ther are guidelines for steriliztion ( sets should not be overloaded and toofull/heavy).

Case carts weights vary according to how full they are.

Linen carts and sterile instrument transport carts that a sterile tech may have to push throughout various areas of the hsopital can be very heavy (average 200-700lbs, but sometimes more.

A sterile technician in many hospitals is responsible for a great deal of the manual labor aspect of the reprocessing of everything used in surgery and almost always underappreciated and mostly criticized. This has been my observation after 15 years of experience at a few places. There is not a lot of glory or good pay given to us for the work we do. I would advise anyone weighing the option of an OR tech and a sterile tech to become a OR Tech.

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Rigby in Dayton, Ohio

40 months ago

foebony in Lansing, Michigan said: I think that it is necessary that you try to find a course with some externship program in Ohio. You first chance to get a job will be at that facility. Then, get the national certification right after the course end. you have to be persistent and show people that you want the job. Overall, it is a good job, but you may feel unappreciated at times. You must have a thick skin.

Thanks--I do have thick skin (worked with quite a few doctors over the years and worked with lots of women--and although I am one, I find women can be nasty in the workplace...Sorry if this offends) My main concern was how heavy the loads might be. Do feel the pay is fairly good?

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Leo in Rockwood, Michigan

40 months ago

Ive been a sterile Processing tech for 2 years now strictly to get my foot in the door at the hospital and the OR. I worked midnights while I went to school for my surgical tech degree, which I just finished. I was the top of the class in grades and at my clinical sites because of my knowledge of instruments and the functions of the OR. It's a good stepping stone job for someone who wants to be a surgical tech. Remember Sterile Processing Tech is a entry level, minimum education job...meaning you will work with a bunch of idiots, sorry it's true.
I will gladly answer any questions about sterile processing or surgical tech for anyone if you reply on this. Good luck everyone.

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Heather in Mount Morris, Michigan

40 months ago

Leo in Rockwood, Michigan said: Ive been a sterile Processing tech for 2 years now strictly to get my foot in the door at the hospital and the OR. I worked midnights while I went to school for my surgical tech degree, which I just finished. I was the top of the class in grades and at my clinical sites because of my knowledge of instruments and the functions of the OR. It's a good stepping stone job for someone who wants to be a surgical tech. Remember Sterile Processing Tech is a entry level, minimum education job...meaning you will work with a bunch of idiots, sorry it's true.
I will gladly answer any questions about sterile processing or surgical tech for anyone if you reply on this. Good luck everyone.

I have heard a lot that sterile processing techs get a lot of 'gruff'. I currently work at a gas station, and I take way too much and most of it isn't my fault it is company policy and so on. I don't want to be a surg. tech. I am just wanting to do this until my daughter gets in school so I can go back for something totally different. My questions are is it generally 8 hour shifts? How hard was it for you to find your first spt job? Do spt jobs generally come with benefits? Are you on your own or do you work with other people? I also live in MI, so in MI how much per hour roughly do sterile processing techs start.

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Leo in Okemos, Michigan

40 months ago

Heather in Mount Morris, Michigan said: I have heard a lot that sterile processing techs get a lot of 'gruff'. I currently work at a gas station, and I take way too much and most of it isn't my fault it is company policy and so on. I don't want to be a surg. tech. I am just wanting to do this until my daughter gets in school so I can go back for something totally different. My questions are is it generally 8 hour shifts? How hard was it for you to find your first spt job? Do spt jobs generally come with benefits? Are you on your own or do you work with other people? I also live in MI, so in MI how much per hour roughly do sterile processing techs start.

Shifts can vary from 8, 10, 12, depending on the hospital. I would say 8hrI shifts seem to be the most common. If the manager is cool they will work with you a bit. I found the job going to the hospital websites And looking at their career section. That is the only way you can really find the jobs. There are not many Spd jobs open, but they will hire with no or little experience. I was hired on the spot with no experience, just was enrolled in the Spd program. They will have full benefits for full time, and part-time too usually over 24hours , you just may pay a bit more outta your check. There are 4 separate job tasks of the department. Sterilizers, sterile Storage, decontamination, instruments. You will generally rotate a different task every day. You can perform your task by yourself, but you need to work in a group and communicate several things throughout the day. If you work midnights there may only be 2or3 of you at a time. Afternoon and midnight shifts are usually your people with less experience, you will probably not find an opening on a day shift. They started me out at 13.15 an hour with no experience, plus I made an extra 8% shift premium.

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mynhii in Oakland, California

40 months ago

Leo in Okemos, Michigan said: Shifts can vary from 8, 10, 12, depending on the hospital. I would say 8hrI shifts seem to be the most common. If the manager is cool they will work with you a bit. I found the job going to the hospital websites And looking at their career section. That is the only way you can really find the jobs. There are not many Spd jobs open, but they will hire with no or little experience. I was hired on the spot with no experience, just was enrolled in the Spd program. They will have full benefits for full time, and part-time too usually over 24hours , you just may pay a bit more outta your check. There are 4 separate job tasks of the department. Sterilizers, sterile Storage, decontamination, instruments. You will generally rotate a different task every day. You can perform your task by yourself, but you need to work in a group and communicate several things throughout the day. If you work midnights there may only be 2or3 of you at a time. Afternoon and midnight shifts are usually your people with less experience, you will probably not find an opening on a day shift. They started me out at 13.15 an hour with no experience, plus I made an extra 8% shift premium.

Are there any weekend shifts?
If you work at midnights for 8 hours, how are you able to find time for studying surgical tech? Did you go to school right after your work was done without sleeping?

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Leo in Rockwood, Michigan

40 months ago

mynhii in Oakland, California said: Are there any weekend shifts?
If you work at midnights for 8 hours, how are you able to find time for studying surgical tech? Did you go to school right after your work was done without sleeping?

Yes, most hospitals run their SPD deptartment 24/7, so there is definetly weekend work. Surgery centers or other facilities for spd/surgical tech may only be M-F. When I was going to school for Surgical Tech, I worked fulltime 40hrs on midnights Thursday-Sunday working 10hr shifts 830pm-7am. Then I had clinicals Tues, Wed, Thurs 7am-330pm. I basically never had a day off for 7 months. I just studied on lunch breaks and every spare minute I could find. It's not easy, but If you want it, it can be done...also it helps when you have a manager that will cater to your needs with school. Nobody else wanted the weekend hours, so I took them every week. Buy a book and start studing your instruments, you wont make it as a Surgical Tech without knowing your instruments by heart.

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Rigby in Dayton, Ohio

40 months ago

Leo in Rockwood, Michigan said: Ive been a sterile Processing tech for 2 years now strictly to get my foot in the door at the hospital and the OR. I worked midnights while I went to school for my surgical tech degree, which I just finished. I was the top of the class in grades and at my clinical sites because of my knowledge of instruments and the functions of the OR. It's a good stepping stone job for someone who wants to be a surgical tech. Remember Sterile Processing Tech is a entry level, minimum education job...meaning you will work with a bunch of idiots, sorry it's true.
I will gladly answer any questions about sterile processing or surgical tech for anyone if you reply on this. Good luck everyone.

At 51, am I too old to start up in this field? I've thought of coding/billing, but I'd rather be busy & moving...Also, I could get back into work faster this way. I have some experience at both. I also thought this might give me a view at the OR too see if I want to go for Surg Tech. What's your spin on this? Would the pay and benefits be adequate?

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Kim in Rochester, New York

39 months ago

It is true a sterile tech is entry level and you do with a bunch of people would may lack the intelectual capacity or level that you may one day, if you end up stuck in that department, long for. Depending on where you work or interview at to move to the OR can be a challenge. You can know the instruments like the back of you hand, but the OR management will discriminate by for instance physical attributes. Are you strong enough to hold a limb for a few hours? And, in many instances Sterile Techs take the blame for a lot of things the OR staff does not want to own up to causing management in the OR to never give you a shot at something you might be great at. I have 15 years of observations and experiences that would boggle your mind!

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lagrimaderosa522 in Camden, New Jersey

39 months ago

Kim in Rochester, New York said: It is true a sterile tech is entry level and you do with a bunch of people would may lack the intelectual capacity or level that you may one day, if you end up stuck in that department, long for. Depending on where you work or interview at to move to the OR can be a challenge. You can know the instruments like the back of you hand, but the OR management will discriminate by for instance physical attributes. Are you strong enough to hold a limb for a few hours? And, in many instances Sterile Techs take the blame for a lot of things the OR staff does not want to own up to causing management in the OR to never give you a shot at something you might be great at. I have 15 years of observations and experiences that would boggle your mind!

im about to star surg tech course any advise not to sure about it im a cert nurse aid and medical assistant

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Leo in Romeo, Michigan

39 months ago

Rigby in Dayton, Ohio said: At 51, am I too old to start up in this field? I've thought of coding/billing, but I'd rather be busy & moving...Also, I could get back into work faster this way. I have some experience at both. I also thought this might give me a view at the OR too see if I want to go for Surg Tech. What's your spin on this? Would the pay and benefits be adequate?

Pay would be about 13hr. And full benefits for full time. Your not too old, as long as your physically able. Some older or very out of shape women try to get into this and then cry when they can't lift a twenty pound tray. Usually it states that in the job description. Iwould apply now even if your not in the program, some places will work with you if you agree to complete the program in a 1or2year span.

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Bigmax in Calgary, Alberta

38 months ago

Thank God I found this website. My sincere thanks to all of you for sharing your thoughts,questions and experiences regarding the SPT course. I was laid off 4 months ago. I registered to take the SPT course certificate this coming Jan 2012 here in Calgary. Some sort of career change if I may say. I still haven't paid my tuition yet. I'm still kinda debating if this is the right thing to do. I'm married and have 1 kid. Don't know if I should get a new job (by the way I am an IE grad) and manufacturing industry here in Calgary sucks. But the career in Health Care is very promising as people getting sicker and sicker everyday because of the economic condition nowadays. I'm also an introvert person. Being a Quality Assurance Technician in a meat plant,I am required to deal with workers not following food safety practices. Meaning I had to deal with them verbally everyday. Too stressful and I was sick of it. I'm doing this research regarding the Sterile Processing Technician course for me to come up with the decision wether to push through and pay my tuition. My tuition deadline is Dec12. I still have 3 months to decide.

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mynhii in Oakland, California

38 months ago

I can't believe that this field is so impacted at my school. All students have to wait for the lottery result. That is only the didactic portion. Then they have to wait for their turn in externship. I thought that only surgical technology is competitive. I have no idea that sterile processing is too.

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Kim in NY in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

38 months ago

I do not believe the sterile processing field or school for it is competative. Schools are businesses that sell you the idea that you need to pay for the education to get the position. Sterile processing is entry level, medical facilities will hire you without schooling, and schooling will not get you up the ladder any faster, because most sterile processing departments promote according to seniority. If you go online you will see that there are oodles of entry level sterile processing positions available that do not require experience or certification. I have never not been able to get a position as a sterile tech when I need one and its not because of my experience or education!

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Heather

38 months ago

I live in MI and it is a bad economy and very competitive job market. No one here will hire you with out training, believe me I have tried. I guess it all depends on where you live. I start my classes in 2 weeks and it will take me less than a year so schooling is worth it for me. I get help with my tuition so what I actually have to pay is only around $1000, totally worth it for me.

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mynhii in Oakland, California

38 months ago

Heather said: I live in MI and it is a bad economy and very competitive job market. No one here will hire you with out training, believe me I have tried.

Do you mean no one will hire us without training or without experience?

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Heather

38 months ago

Well me anyway. I guess everyone's experience is different.

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Julie in Redmond, Washington

38 months ago

I took the Sterile Processing coarse at Cornerstone College in Union City back in May 2011. I paid the $2,500.00 to attend the 5 week class because they promised an externship. WRONG! I never got one. No way I could find work without at least a years experience in Calif. so I moved to Washington where their standards are not as high and don't require the years experience. I got a entry level job immediately.

I am now entering my second month of training. Since I am older, the job has proved to be vert physically demanding. The standing on one's feet all day and much of of it in one place is tiring. Many times I have told myself that this job is not for me. Too hard at my age, but I am sticking with it. But, I do not see myself doing it for long term. The pay is so low and the hospital runs under staffed to save money. I am dead tired when I come home. My goals are to get enough experience to return to Calif. to receive better pay. To be honest, at this point I can't really say I care for this type of work. Perhaps if I was 20 years younger, it would be a different experience. It is boring when all you do is set up the same surgical sets every day. It often feels like an assembly line job in a factory. I am hoping that I will learn all areas and move up. I am going to look into seeing if there is a potential of being a rep or vendor. This is a great job for someone just starting out and wanting to get their feet wet in the medical field.

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Kim in NY in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

38 months ago

Well said. And.. its not just your health care facility that is running understaffed, many are. It is factory work. My direct supervisor, who has never set a tray, but was able to get certfied through the CBSPD ( go figure that one out) said she doesn't care if everyone walks out, how hard is it to open a tray see whats in it, make a list and repeat that action day in and day out. They think they can train anyone to do this job and will continue to do and think this to save the hospital money.

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noe flamenco

38 months ago

symempathy in Oakland, California said: Thank you, Kim
I don't think much about how I will be looked. As long as I'm not discriminated, I will be fine. I also don't plan to work as a sterile technician forever, but I may have to work in that field to gain experience and have a foot in the hospital before I can get into the OR.

I will start surgical technology next summer. Before that, I have plenty of time to get a certificate in Sterile Processing. If I'm lucky enough to have a job while I'm in Surgical Technology, I may have good experience on my resume by the time I graduate.

The question is how hard it is to have a job in sterile processing.

hi.. my name is noe flamenco move from berkly california in 2000 to tucson arizona i started working at nortwest medical center and transfer to sterile processing and i been working for about 5 years already i just looking forward to move back to cali i have the esperience worke hard loyal and focus in the job is there a job for me thanks

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Keiko in Bayville, New Jersey

38 months ago

Are there any Sterile Technician courses in New Jersey?? Im having trouble finding any.

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Julie in Kirkland, Washington

38 months ago

Don't waste your time paying a ton of money for the courses. Just go to www.sterileprocessing.org , buy the books and study guides and then find out where they are giving the next state exam in your area.
The study guide they sell gives you an idea of the test questions. You can buy it all bundled at a cheaper price. Spend $135.00 on study materials and save yourself from spending $2,500.00 which is what the school charged that I went to. Total waste of money.

These schools are turning out all their sterile processors and there are not enough jobs for them, especially in Calif.

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Kim in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

38 months ago

Julie in Kirkland is spot on with her comments.

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Avg in Everett, Massachusetts

37 months ago

Julie, I'm going to play devil's advocate here. If you're telling everyone to circumvent the schools, where are they going to get their externship from? Hospitals are know to have biases in which employees they select. Sometimes, they select people who went to certain schools. The schools' bargaining power is not in actual education, because classroom education is inherently inefficient, but in its networking power. You may know what you are doing but they have connections to employers. They make it very clear that they're the ones that know what employers want. And what are employers doing these days? They're stepping up their demands. Some hospitals want overqualified people to thin out the herd. You don't really need a nurse to do medical coding, but some major hospitals would like to have it that way. Expertise is now reflected by education, rather than practice.

Can someone tell me why a nurse who's not teaching needs a doctorate?

Julie in Kirkland, Washington said:
These schools are turning out
all their sterile processors
and there are not enough jobs for them,
especially in Calif.

These schools are turning out all their sterile processors and there are not enough jobs for them, especially in Calif.There aren't enough jobs for a lot of people in California, right now. Why did you use one of the states with the highest level of unemployment as an example? There are states in the Union that have an unemployment rate under five percent unemployment some states that have an unemployment rate that's over 10 percent. Location is important, half of the time.

No matter what the location there's a trend of profit and non-profit schools taking advantage of students by raising tuition instead of better preparing students at the lowest cost. I don't know if price gouging is the appropriate term, but it sounds like it.

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Lee in Sacramento, California

37 months ago

symempathy in Oakland, California said: Was anyone here a sterile processing technician before becoming a surgical technician?

I plan to take a sterile processing class in this Fall 2011 at Skyline College before I applied Surgical Technology for the Summer 2012. I think knowing a little bit about sterile field may help me when I'm in the ST program.

Does anyone have sterile processing job? Is it hard to find a job in that field? Thank you

Hello. Did you ever take the sterile processing class in Fall 2011 at Skyline College? If so, how was it? How difficult is it to get accepted into the Surgical Technology program at Skyline College? Is that a good college? Thanks for your reply!

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Lea in Hayward, California

36 months ago

mynhii in Oakland, California said: From your experience, is it easier to be hired in central service department or the OR? I'm not interested in becoming a surgical technician, but if it gives me a better chance to be hired as a sterile processing technician, I'll study it.

I took a sterile processing technician in hayward but still cant find a job as a SPD tech til this day and im interested in becoming a surgical tech. i want to do it at skyline also. is it hard to get into skyline college for the surgical tech program?

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Joe in Washington, District of Columbia

36 months ago

I'm an investigative reporter in Washington, DC, working on a story about the work conditions of central sterile technicians. I've had no trouble finding CSSD managers to talk to, but so far, I haven't found any workers. If anyone here works, or has worked, as a central sterile tech, I'd love to talk to you. Please contact me by the email below.

Thanks,
Joe Eaton
Staff Writer
Center for Public Integrity

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Kim Diamond in Geneseo, New York

36 months ago

Joe in Washington, District of Columbia said: I'm an investigative reporter in Washington, DC, working on a story about the work conditions of central sterile technicians. I've had no trouble finding CSSD managers to talk to, but so far, I haven't found any workers. If anyone here works, or has worked, as a central sterile tech, I'd love to talk to you. Please contact me by the email below.

Thanks,
Joe Eaton
Staff Writer
Center for Public Integrity

I would love to talk to you. I have worked in a Rochester, NY area hospital and currently a small town hospital. The things I could tell and that my current coworkers can verify would blow your mind. From rusty instruments in trays, to being treated as unintelligent members of the surgical team, to no breaks or raises as promised, and much much more !

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PJ in Raleigh, North Carolina

35 months ago

Can you tell me how to get into this field? I see a class offered for it but all the jobs I see require 1-2 years experience. I am in Raleigh.

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Krzztell in Clifton, New Jersey

34 months ago

lagrimaderosa522 in Camden, New Jersey said: im about to star surg tech course any advise not to sure about it im a cert nurse aid and medical assistant

Have you started already? Which school are you looking at? I am in the passaic area ..shoot me an email krzztell@yahoo.com ..just make sure you are going to a CAAHEP accredited ST program...

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Tammy in Spruce Grove, Alberta

33 months ago

I'm very interested in taking a sterile processing course. It sounds like a perfect fit for me, my only concern is the exposure to strong chemicals? How bad is it (strong fumes, etc)? Thanks so much!

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Krzztell in Hawthorne, New Jersey

33 months ago

Tammy in Spruce Grove, Alberta said: I'm very interested in taking a sterile processing course. It sounds like a perfect fit for me, my only concern is the exposure to strong chemicals? How bad is it (strong fumes, etc)? Thanks so much!

you actually clean the instruments in machines called autoclaves, which sterilizes by extremely hot water so I am thinking not too much chemicals

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Heather in Flint, Michigan

33 months ago

I am currently in a Sterile Processing Technician Program and I start externship next month. Yes there is a variety of very strong chemicals you will have to use, however this is in the decontamination area where you will always be wearing heavy duty gloves, mask, gown, booties, a face shield or goggles and a bouffant cap. Your exposure to chemical on skin contact is minimal as long as you wear all your PPE and are very safe and careful. Some hospitals have automatic dispensers so you won't be actually touching the chemical container. They are steam sterilized, chemically sterilized, dry heat sterilized, and gas sterilized, but this is only AFTER they are thoroughly cleaned.

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Heather in Flint, Michigan

33 months ago

Heather in Flint, Michigan said: I am currently in a Sterile Processing Technician Program and I start externship next month. Yes there is a variety of very strong chemicals you will have to use, however this is in the decontamination area where you will always be wearing heavy duty gloves, mask, gown, booties, a face shield or goggles and a bouffant cap. Your exposure to chemical on skin contact is minimal as long as you wear all your PPE and are very safe and careful. Some hospitals have automatic dispensers so you won't be actually touching the chemical container. They are steam sterilized, chemically sterilized, dry heat sterilized, and gas sterilized, but this is only AFTER they are thoroughly cleaned.

This comment is for Tammy

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Tammy in Spruce Grove, Alberta

33 months ago

Heather in Flint, Michigan said: I am currently in a Sterile Processing Technician Program and I start externship next month. Yes there is a variety of very strong chemicals you will have to use, however this is in the decontamination area where you will always be wearing heavy duty gloves, mask, gown, booties, a face shield or goggles and a bouffant cap. Your exposure to chemical on skin contact is minimal as long as you wear all your PPE and are very safe and careful. Some hospitals have automatic dispensers so you won't be actually touching the chemical container. They are steam sterilized, chemically sterilized, dry heat sterilized, and gas sterilized, but this is only AFTER they are thoroughly cleaned.

Thanks for the info!!!

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