How to Become a Surgical Tech in Idaho

How to Become a Surgical Tech in Idaho

In the operating rooms of Idaho, a dedicated team of medical professionals stands ready to spring into action, especially during emergencies.

This team consists of crucial personnel, including surgeons, anesthesia specialists, surgical nurses, and surgical technicians.

Their coordinated efforts commence before the surgical procedure starts and continue until the surgery’s conclusion.

Surgical technicians might also go by other titles such as operating room (OR) techs or scrub techs.

Surgical Technologist Job Description and Duties

Surgical technologists shoulder a myriad of responsibilities during their shifts.

These include:

  • Preparing patients for surgery
  • Transporting patients to and from the OR
  • Preparing the OR with surgical equipment and supplies
  • Monitoring the instrument count throughout surgery
  • Handing the surgeon medical instruments
  • Closing wounds and bandaging patients

However, this list does not encompass all the duties that a surgical technologist might be tasked with.

Surgical Technologist Training and Education

Becoming a surgical technologist in Idaho necessitates a systematic approach, as this profession demands a well-rounded education and clinical training.

The journey typically starts with obtaining a high school diploma or an equivalent GED.

Following this, individuals must enroll in specialized training programs tailored to this profession.

In Idaho, there are multiple educational avenues for individuals aspiring to become skilled surgical technologists.

These programs are designed to provide students with the knowledge and training needed for this critical role in the operating room.

College of Western Idaho

At the College of Western Idaho, prospective surgical technologists can choose between:

  • An Intermediate Technical Certificate
  • An Associate of Applied Science degree in surgical technology.

The certificate program offers a quicker path, taking just 18 months to complete, while the degree program spans two years.

For those who opt for the certificate program, the cost is $7,621 for in-state students and $16,138 for out-of-state students.

College of Southern Idaho

The College of Southern Idaho exclusively offers an Associate of Applied Science degree in surgical technology.

Applications for this program are accepted between February and August until all available slots are filled.

Completing the degree generally takes two years, and the annual tuition fee is approximately $4,000.

College of Eastern Idaho

Aspiring surgical technologists can also consider the College of Eastern Idaho.

This institution provides a comprehensive two-year program leading to an Associate of Applied Science degree in surgical technology.

What sets this program apart is the inclusion of hands-on training within local hospitals, providing students with valuable real-world experience.

Currently, the annual tuition for this program is around $3,000.

Bevill State Community College

This institution’s program encompasses topics such as:

  • Sterile processing,
  • Infection control
  • Sterilization,
  • Instrumentation identification,
  • Safety

Prerequisites for students who want to study here typically include:

  • Have a high school diploma or GED
  • Pass the Accuplacer placement exam
  • Have health insurance
  • Completing at least 120 clinical cases
  • Complete at least 30 cases in General Surgery, with 20 of them in the first scrub role

Having previous medical-related experience is also considered.

Students must complete a specific number of clinical cases, including cases in general surgery, as well as meet standardized test score requirements.

Calhoun Community College

Their program spans about two years or four semesters, during which students receive classroom, lab, and clinical instruction.

To pursue an AAS degree at this college, students must complete additional general education credit hours and meet the college’s admission requirements.

These requirements are:

  • Apply online
  • Attend a program information session
  • Complete a Manual Dexterity Exam
School Name Address
College of Western Idaho 5500 E Opportunity Dr, Nampa, ID 83687
Calhoun Community College online
Bevill State Community College online
College of Southern Idaho 315 Falls Ave, Twin Falls, ID 83301
College of Eastern Idaho 1600 S 25th E, Idaho Falls, ID 83404

Each of these institutions offers unique opportunities and advantages for individuals interested in the field of surgical technology.

The programs vary in duration and tuition costs, allowing prospective students to select the option that best suits their career goals and financial considerations.

Common coursework generally includes subjects such as:

  • Microbiology,
  • Pathophysiology,
  • Pharmacology,
  • Anatomy,
  • Physiology,
  • Medical terminology.

Basic life support (BLS) and automated external defibrillator (AED) training are often included.

Becoming a Certified Surgical Technologist

While Idaho doesn’t legally mandate certification for surgical technologists, employers often prefer certified individuals.

The field recognizes several certifying bodies, including:

  • National Surgical Assistant Association (NSAA)
    • Provides the Certified Surgical Assistant (CSA) qualification
  • National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA)
    • Provides the Certified Surgical Technologist/Certified First Assistant credential
  • National Center for Competency Training (NCCT)
    • Provides the Tech in Surgery Certification

The NBSTSA certification is widely esteemed and nationally recognized.

To maintain certification, surgical technologists must renew it every four years.

Renewal can be achieved by either retaking the certification exam.

Another option is to complete continuing education classes, which require accumulating 60 education credits during the renewal period.

Renewal also involves a fee.

Surgical Technologist Salaries in Idaho

Surgical technologists in Idaho enjoy competitive salaries.

On average, they earn approximately $47,800 annually.

The next section provides insights into the cities within the state where surgical technologists tend to earn higher salaries compared to other regions.

Annual Salary Range:
Annual Salary by Location:
Location Avg. Annual Salary
Lewiston $52,700
Ashton $52,000
Coeur D'Alene $52,000
White Bird $51,300
Irwin $50,700
Post Falls $50,300
Ahsahka $50,200
Smelterville $50,200
Boise $47,900
Howe $46,000

Regional Salary in Idaho

Region Employed Avg. Annual Salary Avg. Hourly Pay Top 10% Annual Salary Bottom 10% Annual Salary
Boise City, ID240$59,570$28.64$73,740$44,690
Coeur d'Alene, ID80$58,350$28.05$64,250$45,720
Idaho Falls, ID90$52,350$25.17$61,160$43,640
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Surgical Technologists, OCC Code 29-2055, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can a Surgical Tech From Idaho Choose a Specialty?


Just like surgeons can choose to operate on a specific body part, so can these techs.

Here are the most commonly chosen surgery niches:

  • General surgery,
  • Ob/gyn,
  • Urology,
  • Plastics,
  • Neurology

Where Do Surgical Technologists from Idaho Find Work?

These technologists usually work in a hospital’s surgery wing.

Furthermore, these other places also hire such specialists:

  • Children’s hospitals
  • Cosmetic surgery centers
  • Specialty clinics for surgical procedures

What Sills Do I Need To Work As A Surgical Tech in Idaho?

Here are the most important skills this profession requires:

  • Able to work as part of a team
  • Detail-oriented
  • Take direction
  • Understanding medical terms
  • Understanding medical methodology
  • Good communication skills

USA Surgical Tech Programs by State

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