Becoming a Sterile Processing Technician in Idaho

While frontline medical staff such as doctors and nurses are integral to procedures and operations, so are professionals who work behind the scenes to ensure the environment and equipment used is safe and sterile. These professionals are known as sterile processing technicians.

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This role involves sterilizing medical equipment, tools, supplies and settings to ensure the safety of everything used for a medical procedure. It’s fairly easy to become a sterile processing technician in Idaho, and the state has many opportunities for working in this important healthcare role.

Requirements for Becoming a Sterile Processing Technician in Idaho

The state of Idaho does not have regulations or requirements for this profession. This means you could get started without a bachelor’s degree or specific training, certification or licensing. However, employers may require qualifications such as training and certification, and these prepare you for the role and help you stand out as a job candidate.

Educational Programs in Idaho

You may find training programs for this field through community colleges, technical schools or online programs. You can also search for related roles of central service technicians, medical equipment preparers, surgical technologists or other job titles. These all involve sterilizing equipment, although the surgical technologist also assists with equipment during procedures and operations.

Here are some training options available to you:

College of Southern Idaho

This school offers a technical certificate as a central sterile processing technician. Training involves 10 credit hours covering central sterile processing, medical terminology and more.

Program Focus:

  • Understanding the role of the central sterile processing technician as it relates to the surgical healthcare team.
  • Developing skills necessary for entry-level employment as central sterile processing technicians.

Post-Admission Program Requirements: The program consists of the following courses totalling 10 credit hours:

  • ALLH 100: Introduction to Allied Health (2 Credits)
  • ALLH 101: Medical Terminology (2 Credits)
  • ALLH 104: Central Sterile Processing (3 Credits)
  • COMM 101: Fundamentals of Oral Communication (3 Credits)

Total Credit Hours Required for This Major: 10

College of Western Idaho

The surgical technology program teaches a combination of preparing medical equipment and assisting physicians during surgery and procedures. The course prepares you for the Certified Surgical Technologist (CST) exam through the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA).

Degree or Certificate Type:

  • Associate of Applied Science (AAS)


  • 2 years

Primary Location:

  • Ada County Center

Learning Opportunities:

  • Technical Skills in Surgery: Developing expertise in handling surgical instruments and understanding surgical procedures.
  • Sterile Processing Knowledge: Learning the principles of sterile processing for maintaining a safe and efficient operating environment.
  • Clinical Experience: Gaining practical experience in various surgical settings.
  • Patient Care Techniques: Understanding patient care in the surgical context, including preoperative and postoperative procedures.
  • Career Advancement: Preparing for a rewarding career in surgical technology with high-demand skills.

Program Accreditation:

The program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP).

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 Options for Becoming a Sterile Processing Technician in Idaho

Many training programs prepare you to take a certification exam, and certain employers require certification. Options include becoming a CST or a CRCST, which are mentioned under training programs, or earning a Certified Sterile Processing and Distribution Technician (CSPDT) through the Certification Board for Sterile Processing and Distribution (CBSPD).

Job Growth Outlook and Salary Expectations

Sterile Processing Technicians in Idaho earn an average annual salary of $37,030, with an hourly wage that can be estimated around $17.80. While this salary is below the national average of $41,480, it’s important to consider Idaho’s lower cost of living. These medical professionals can expect steady hours and benefits, contributing to a stable work environment.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics anticipates the job outlook for surgical technologists, which is closely related to sterile processing technicians, to grow by 7% from 2019 to 2029, reflecting a healthy demand for these roles in the healthcare industry.

National vs. Idaho Salaries:

Percentile National Average Idaho
10% $31,570 $31,010
25% $36,240 $33,910
Median $41,480 $37,030
75% $50,300 $45,430
90% $62,960 $60,020

Salaries and Percentiles by Region in Idaho:

Region 10% Low 25% QL Median 75% QU 90% High
Boise City, ID $31,930 $35,180 $37,070 $47,470 $76,890
Idaho Falls, ID $31,430 $33,910 $34,740 $36,360 $47,960

Medical Equipment Preparers Employment Trends in Idaho

In Idaho, the employment outlook for Medical Equipment Preparers is highly positive, with a significant projected growth rate of 21% from 2020 to 2030, according to Projections Central. The state had 340 employees in this occupation in 2020, and this number is expected to increase to 410 by 2030. This growth is anticipated to result in about 50 job openings each year over the decade, which includes new positions and replacements for vacated ones.

Comparatively, the national employment for Medical Equipment Preparers is projected to grow by 5% from 2022 to 2032, which is considered faster than average, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The United States is expected to have 66,700 employees in this field in 2022, with a projected increase to 70,300 by 2032, leading to about 9,500 job openings annually.

Employment Trends for Medical Equipment Preparers

Employment (2020/2022) Projected Employment (2030/2032) Projected Growth (2020-2030/2022-2032) Projected Annual Job Openings (2020-2030/2022-2032)
Idaho 340 410 21% 50
United States 66,700 70,300 5% 9,500

Sources of Data:

  1. For Idaho-specific employment projections, the data is sourced from Projections Central, which offers the 2020-2030 long-term projections for state-level occupational employment.
  2. The national employment projections are obtained from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), which provides the 2022-2032 employment projections for various occupations across the United States.

Working as a Sterile Processing Technician in Idaho

In Idaho, Sterile Processing Technicians are finding a rapidly growing job market, with a projected 21% increase in employment from 2020 to 2030, significantly outpacing the national average. With an average salary of $37,030, these essential healthcare workers are compensated fairly for their critical role in maintaining the sterility of medical equipment, which is fundamental to patient safety and successful medical outcomes. The state’s lower cost of living coupled with the competitive wages and steady hours makes Idaho an attractive place for professionals in this field seeking stable and rewarding employment opportunities.