Becoming a Sterile Processing Technician in Florida

Sterile processing technicians are essential members of the healthcare system. These healthcare workers are responsible for cleaning and sterilizing medical equipment and tools. Sterile processing technicians help prevent infectious diseases from spreading in hospitals and other healthcare facilities.

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To work as a sterile processing technician, you must know all the specific equipment used by medical staff, and you must also be familiar with cleaning and sterilization techniques. You will also need a keen eye for detail. Sterile processing technicians usually work long hours, but their job is also rewarding.

Florida Licensing Requirements for Sterile Processing Technicians

In Florida, a license is not required to work as a sterile processing technician. However, this job is usually overseen by a registered nurse or another licensed healthcare professional. And since specific techniques and healthcare guidelines and procedures must be followed, many sterile processing techs find it useful to complete a formal training program or obtain accreditation.

Sterile Processing Technician Education in Florida

Training can be done on the job, but if you are looking to get hired quickly, you may want to consider completing a sterile processing technician training program. Besides having a high school diploma or GED, there aren’t any other prerequisites to enroll in a sterile processing tech program in Florida. There are quite a few sterile processing tech programs in the state. Here is an overview of some of them:

  • Florida Institute of Sterile Processing. Located in Miami, the Florida Institute of Sterile Processing (FISP) offers a course that teaches students the roles and responsibilities of a sterile processing technician, anatomy and physiology, decontamination infection control, sterilization and an entire workshop on surgical instruments. This course is taken on Saturdays for one month so that students who already work can fit it into their schedule. Space is limited, so a registration fee must be paid to secure a spot in the course. Study materials are included in the tuition cost, and students who take the course are eligible for certification.
  • Eastern Florida State College. At Eastern Florida, students can take the sterile processing technician program, which is a part of the surgical services Associate in Science degree program. They can stop at the certificate or continue through the program and earn an associate degree in Surgical Services/Health Science. The certificate program consists of 30 credit hours and can be taken over 2-3 terms.
  • Tallahassee Community College. Tallahassee Community College offers a Central Sterile Processing Technologist Certificate Program that teaches students how to safely assemble and disassemble surgical instruments, decontamination techniques, patient safety, sterilization and more. The program also prepares students to take the national certification exam. This 30-credit hour program is taken in the fall and spring semesters and is a limited program.
Featured School

Penn Foster College – Online Sterile Processing Technician Certification

Take the first steps towards a career as a sterile processing technician with Penn Foster’s Sterile Processing Career Diploma. As a student in the program, you’ll be prepared to sit for the Certified Registered Central Service Technician (CRCST) exam through the Healthcare Sterile Processing Association (HSPA). Call 1-800-851-1819 today.

Certification for Sterile Processing Technicians

The International Association of Healthcare Central Service Materials Management (IAHCSMM) offers national certification to sterile processing technicians.

Certification is not required to work as a sterile processing tech, but it can help with career advancement and pay increases. You will also be more likely to get hired over someone who is not certified.

The IAHCSMM offers five certification levels: entry-level, secondary instrumentation, endoscope reprocessing, central service management and service vendor certification. Once you get the certification, you should renew it annually.

Job Growth Outlook and Salary Expectations

As per the latest data, Sterile Processing Technicians in Florida earn an average annual wage of $36,790. This figure is slightly below the national average salary for this occupation, which stands at $41,480. In Florida, entry-level technicians have an average annual wage of $29,190, while the top earners in the state can make up to $48,840 annually.

The job outlook for Sterile Processing Technicians continues to be positive, with national job growth projected at 5% from 2022 to 2032. In Florida, the employment in this field is expected to grow at a robust rate, although the exact percentage is not provided in the latest data.

National vs. Florida Salaries:

Percentile United States Florida
10% $31,570 $29,190
25% $36,240 $31,700
Median $41,480 $36,790
75% $50,300 $43,580
90% $62,960 $48,840

Salaries and Percentiles by Region in Florida:

Region 10% Low 25% QL Median 75% QU 90% High
Cape Coral-Fort Myers $32,640 $34,080 $34,080 $39,890 $46,500
Deltona-Daytona Beach-Ormond Beach $31,200 $31,200 $33,280 $35,030 $36,840

Medical Equipment Preparers Employment Trends in Florida

The employment trends for Medical Equipment Preparers (Sterile Processing Technicians) in Florida show a positive outlook. In 2020, there were 2,540 individuals employed in this occupation in the state. By 2030, the number is projected to increase to 2,960 employees, indicating a significant growth rate of 17%. This growth is expected to result in approximately 380 job openings each year over the decade, which includes new positions due to growth and replacements for existing roles.

In comparison, the national employment for this occupation is projected to grow by 5% from 2022 to 2032, which is considered faster than average. The United States is expected to have 66,700 employees in this field in 2022, with a projected increase to 70,300 by 2032, creating about 9,500 job openings annually.

Employment (2020/2022) Projected Employment (2030/2032) Projected Growth (2020-2030/2022-2032) Projected Annual Job Openings (2020-2030/2022-2032)
Florida 2,540 2,960 17% 380
United States 66,700 70,300 5% 9,500

Sources of Data:

  • For Florida-specific data, the source is Projections Central, which provides the 2020-2030 long-term projections.’For Florida-specific data, the source is Projections Central, which provides the 2020-2030 long-term projections.

Working as a Sterile Processing Technician in Florida

Florida’s growth rate in this sector significantly outpaces the national average, suggesting that the state is an attractive location for those seeking to enter or advance in this field. With a variety of healthcare settings available, from large hospitals to specialized clinics, Sterile Processing Technicians in Florida can expect a dynamic work environment with a focus on maintaining high standards of cleanliness and infection control.

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