$23.05 to $26.27 per hour
High school diploma
Sterile processing certificate
Surgical processors, also referred to as medical device reprocessing technicians, sterile processing technicians or central service technicians, perform an essential service within the health care setting: the provision of safe surgical equipment. They collect, disassemble, decontaminate, disinfect, assemble, function test, package, sterilize, store and distribute instruments, equipment and supplies used in surgical units. They are responsible for operating and maintaining a variety of equipment used to process surgical instruments. Surgical processors assemble and provide surgical supply sets and carts as ordered for scheduled and emergency surgeries. They also inventory, monitor, order, replenish and rotate supplies in their work areas.
Surgical processors are responsible for cleaning and sanitizing their work areas and inspecting and maintaining supplies to ensure supplies are functioning and surgical areas are well stocked. Surgical processors follow established safety and infection control protocols. They document and report on activities within the work area and may provide leadership and guidance to other surgical processors, students and other health care staff.
Surgical processors typically work at hospitals as part of a surgical department, endoscopy unit team or in a central sterile processing area. While surgical processors often work independently, they also work alongside other surgical processors, physicians, nurses and other health care workers to provide the best care to patients.
Surgical processors may work full-time or part-time hours or on a call-in (casual) basis. They can apply for positions that are permanent, temporary, or casual depending on department and facility needs. Shift schedules may include a combination of day, evening, night and weekend shifts, as well as on-call duty.
Surgical processors are on their feet walking or standing for much of their shift. They may be required to bend, reach, lift and move equipment and supplies. Surgical processors are exposed to strong chemicals and bio-hazardous materials while doing their jobs. Their work areas can be noisy and busy and, at times, can be challenging or stressful, such as in emergency situations.