Sterile Processing Technician Careers in Indiana
Are you looking for a career in healthcare where you can work behind the scenes supporting essential medical procedures by cleaning and sterilizing equipment? Sterile processing technicians are vital to the ongoing safe operation of the hospital, as their work prevents the spread of infections between patients. If you are interested in this career, you will need to have an eye for details, good physical stamina and an affinity for clerical work.
In addition to cleaning, sterile processing technicians are responsible for inventory control and tracking. Equipment must be stored under specific conditions and remain adequately packaged. Technicians have the responsibility for monitoring storage rooms and inspecting packaging regularly. Meticulous record-keeping is necessary to ensure proper procedures can be tracked for quality assurance. Technicians also spend a significant amount of time on their feet, cleaning and delivering equipment to and from various areas in the hospital.
Since sterile processing technicians work to make equipment available for medical and surgical procedures, they tend to work long hours, with the potential for mandatory overtime. Those in the field should expect to work weekends, holidays and off-shifts as well as take on-call to clean equipment used in emergent surgical procedures.
Licensing Requirements for Indiana Sterile Processing Technicians
Licensing is not required for sterile processing technicians in many states, and Indiana is no exception. However, sterile processing technicians work under significant oversight, including direct supervision by a licensed professional, usually a registered nurse. In addition, central sterile processing departments are subjected to regular inspections, both internal and external.
Educational Programs for Training Sterile Processing Technicians in Indiana
Since sterile processing technicians need to have a great deal of knowledge about the equipment they clean, sterilizing equipment and cleaning procedures, it is necessary to acquire the proper training before working in the field. Traditionally, training for this career was offered on the job through hospitals and sterile processing contracting companies. However, these positions were typically available to those already employed by an organization that needed such positions filled. By contrast, modern sterile processing technicians can directly enter the career through attendance at a reputable training program.
In Indiana, the following program is available:
- Ivy Tech Community College, with numerous campuses throughout Indiana, offers a Healthcare Specialist Program. Students in the program can choose to specialize in one of several healthcare specialties including central sterile processing. Students are promised individual attention, advising and instruction, with particular attention given to those who are struggling.
Many organizations offer credentialing tests to sterile processing technicians. Although there is no universal requirement for credentialing, some employers may require specific types of certifications. To increase your employment potential, you may wish to research the preferences of the organizations in which you hope to become employed. In general, acquiring certifications is a great way to gain employment and achieve promotion.
Sterile Processing Technician Wages in Indiana
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), sterile processing technicians made an average wage of $36,640 in 2019. By contrast, the average national salary in the same year was $39,530. Wages in the state ranged from $26,970 to $49,700. In general, wages need to be looked at in relation to local costs of living.
Sterile Processing Technicians in Indiana
The career is growing in Indiana, with Projections Central predicting a 7.1 percent increase in jobs between 2018 and 2028. With an estimated 980 sterile processing technicians currently employed in the state, this growth translates to an additional 70 jobs by 2028.
In Indiana, potential employers include Franciscan Health, Indiana University Health, IU Health West Hospital, Prime Healthcare, Community Healthcare System, Trinity Health and Octapharma Plasma.