How to Become a Sterile Processing Technician in Connecticut
Every day, medical facilities across the U.S. rely on properly sterilized equipment and supplies to maintain their normal function. Multiple steps are needed to ensure that every item goes through the required sterilization process. The personnel who take responsibility for this process are known as sterile processing technicians.
As in all states, a variety of facilities in Connecticut employ the services of these technicians. Members of the profession generally make good money from their abilities. They also belong to a larger employment category noted for its ongoing growth opportunities.
Interested in joining the ranks of Connecticut’s sterile processing technicians? Use the information in this brief guide to get started on a realistic, effective path to success.
Connecticut’s Rules for Sterile Processing Technicians
Many states do not directly govern the employment of sterile processing technicians. However, things are different in Connecticut. The state categorizes sterile processors as “central service technicians.” It also lays out specific requirements for working in this field. These requirements state that would-be technicians must do one of the following things:
- Obtain certification from the International Association of Healthcare Central Service Materiel Management (IAHCSMM)
- Obtain certification from the Certification Board for Sterile Processing and Distribution (CBSPD)
However, you do not need to get certified right away. Connecticut law provides for a two-year grace period during which you can work without certification. After that period ends, you must either show proof you’re certified or stop working as a sterile processing technician. Periodically, you must renew your certification by taking continuing education classes.
As a rule, you must also meet other requirements to sit for a certification exam. First, you must hold a GED or high school diploma. In addition, you must be at least 18.
In-State Training Options
To have a chance of passing a certification exam, you must possess detailed knowledge of the duties and responsibilities of sterile processing technicians. But how do you gain this knowledge? The most common option is enrolling in a training program that covers all of the information you need to know.
In Connecticut, a number of schools offer sterile processing technician training as part of their curriculum. Examples of these schools include:
- Asnuntuck Community College – This Enfield-based institution combines classroom education and practical labs with on-the-job observation of currently employed technicians. All program participants must also undergo career development training. Graduates are prepared to sit for the CBSPD exam.
- Middlesex Community College – This institution also meets the exam qualification requirements of the CBSPD. Its program features 60 hours of lab and classroom instruction. In normal circumstances, participants must also complete a 20-hour clinical internship.
- Naugatuck Valley Community College – NVCC’s sterile processing technician program rotates between Danbury and Waterbury in alternating semesters. The program provides a total of 40 hours of training. Graduates qualify to sit for the CBSPD exam.
Salary Expectations for Connecticut Sterile Processing Technicians
On average, Connecticut’s sterile processing technicians earn roughly $38,000 a year. This is close to the reported national average of $39,530. At the lower end of the earnings scale, the state’s technicians make just under $30,000 annually. About 10 percent of Connecticut sterile processing technicians make $47,800 or more. As a newcomer to the field, you will probably earn an income that sits on the lower side of the state average.
Job Projections for Sterile Processing Technicians
How stable is the job market for America’s sterile processing technicians? The federal government includes these workers in a larger employment sector for medical equipment preparers. Current and future figures for these preparers are encouraging. By 2028, there will be 4,600 more total positions than there were in 2018. That adds up to a significant increase of about 8 percent. In any given year, approximately 7,300 openings become available in new or existing positions.