How Much Do Surgical Technologists Make

What do surgical techs make?

This guide will focus on the average annual salary of surgical techs. We’ll also highlight some states, cities, and facilities that pay the highest amount as OR tech salary.

Then, before we conclude, we’ll talk about some factors that influence practitioners’ pay in this field. Until then, let’s have a brief discussion on these professionals.

How Much Does a Surgical Tech Make?

The smooth execution of life-saving operational procedures is primarily made possible by surgical technicians. Their primary responsibility is to set up the operating room before a process.

Along with these duties, they also carry patients to and from the operating room, maintain the functionality of medical equipment, handle equipment for a surgeon, etc.

Before stepping into this career path, you must learn about its lucrativeness. You can determine whether the profession is worthwhile by knowing how much these experts make.

Moreover, it will help you prepare for salary negotiations when offered a job.

  • About Surgical Technologist Salary

You can call them scrub techs or operating room technicians.

They’re an invaluable part of the operational room team that handles critical roles before, during, and after surgeries. They ensure all operating instruments are in place and the space is appropriately sterile.

These workers can also set up robotic operating equipment, hold retractors, keep organs in place, and position the patient as instructed.

Dressing the surgical site, restocking the operating room, taking stock of operational supplies, and disposing of used equipment are additional roles of these practitioners.

Average Annual Salary of a Surgical Technologist

Expertise in this sector earns a reasonable salary, with an annual median of $55,960. ZipRecruiter reports that the average monthly salary for experts in this field is $8,667 as of September 9, 2023.

Additionally, they mentioned that the pay could range from $3,0983 to $12,958 per month.

Meanwhile, the BLS states that surgical tech can earn up to $38,860 annually and $78,560 at the top. You can make more or less than this amount, depending on critical factors.

Allow us to consider these influencing elements to understand them better.

Factors that Influence the Salary of a Surgical Technologist

Various factors influence the salary of experts in this field. They include education, experience, geographical location, work setting, and specialty area.

  • Level of experience and Expertise

Your compensation may vary based on your level of expertise and experience.

Entry-level business positions typically pay lower than advanced positions, but salary increases with knowledge and proficiency. Moreover, you’ll be open to more job options.

  • Educational and Training Background

Similarly, your education and training background can directly correlate with your earning potential. The higher your educational certificate, the more money you make in the industry.

Research shows that 48.7% of practitioners in this field hold associate degrees.

Then, 61.8% pursue majors in medical technology. But generally, those who graduate from accredited programs often have a competitive edge in the industry.

  • Certification

Although some states don’t demand attestation from these experts, you must have one.

This will showcase your field knowledge and skills to potential employers, qualifying you for high-paying jobs in the sector. So, having a CST qualification from NBSTSA can impact your potential earnings.

According to research, practitioners with Basic Life Support (BLS) certification can have an increased salary of 22%. This means you can receive an average of $110,499 per year.

  • Geographical Location

Where you live can significantly impact your salary. Usually, regions with a high cost of living, a high demand for surgical techs, and local economic factors pay the highest amount.

This is to help practitioners offset the ongoing expenses.

Megacities such as New York and Los Angeles have a higher demand for experts in this field. So, getting hired in these regions translates to higher or more competitive salaries.

  • Work Setting

Being an expert in this field offers employment opportunities in various settings, such as hospitals, outpatient clinics, and ambulatory surgical centers.

All these work environments pay surgical techs differently. The amount you’ll make as you begin a career in this field depends on where you work.

  • Specialty

There are many specialties within this career path. The individual influences the income in orthopedic surgery, neurosurgery, and cardiac surgery.

Specialized practitioners will be paid well and receive extra compensation if their fields are in high demand. This compensates them for their technical skill set and the complexity of the procedures they assist in.

  • Access to Bonuses

Besides a basic salary, these workers also benefit from bonuses and overtime pay. This further increases their annual income significantly.

Some extras that come your way include performance-based and retention bonuses. You may also enjoy healthcare benefits such as medical, vision, and dental coverage.

Highest Paying Cities for Surgical Techs

Berkeley, CA, Renton, WA, and Sonoma, CA, are some U.S. cities known for their high salaries.

They pay practitioners in this field above the $104,011 average. In addition to increased wages, these cities offer surgical techs more economic opportunities.

Jobs that Pay Surgical Tech the Most

Similarly, certain specialties pay higher salaries than others. Such positions require a great deal of training and certification. You’ll also be required to have relevant skills before venturing into the field.

Some highly paid jobs in this field include surgical oncologist, operational services director, and registered nurse surgical.

Others are LD surgical techs, operational oncology physicians, and more. These jobs pay around $133,567 to $317,499 per year.

Increasing Your Chances of High Salaries

To increase your income, consider obtaining an advanced academic certificate if you’re unsatisfied with your current salary. We refer to credentials like bachelor’s or master’s degrees.

Such qualifications will qualify for advanced job positions in the industry.

Secondly, you’ll need a certification from a recognized agency. Such credentials will showcase your knowledge and skills in the field to prospective employers.

In addition, it will set you apart in a competitive job market. Finally, you’ll need work experience in surgical tech or related areas.

Surgical tech is not only an exciting career but highly rewarding as well. Practitioners in this field earn a substantial salary, which depends on several factors.

You can utilize it to make informed career decisions.