Sterile Processing Technician Careers in Massachusetts
Stopping the spread of pathogens is one of the highest priorities in both hospital and surgical settings. With the importance of providing clean and sterilized equipment for procedures, sterile processing technicians are essential to the industry. If you are interested in this career and want to know if it’s a good fit for you, keep reading below
So what exactly does the job entail? Sterile processing technicians need to be detail-oriented, as the job holds a high level of responsibility for patient safety. Technicians need to have a firm grasp of all of the equipment on which they work and know which cleaning or sterilization technique is required for each one. Working in the field often means tracking and delivering inventory throughout a facility, making clerical skills and physical stamina a must. Additionally, sterile processing technicians will usually be responsible for inspecting physical packaging for damage and tracking expired supplies.
Massachusetts Licensing Requirements for Sterile Processing Technicians
You do not need to acquire a state-mandated license to work as a sterile processing technician in Massachusetts. However, as a health-related field involved in infection control, the career does face significant oversight by various organizations such as the health department and hospital accreditation agencies. As such, a sterile processing department is generally run by a licensed professional, typically a registered nurse.
Education for Sterile Processing Technicians in Massachusetts
Prior to seeking training as a sterile processing technician, you will need to obtain a high school diploma or equivalent. Although on-the-job training is still prevalent in the industry, it is also possible to acquire training through a reputable training course. A few potential training programs in Massachusetts include:
- Mass Bay Community College, with campuses in Wellesley Hills, Framingham and Ashland, offers a Certificate in Central Processing Technology. Students in the program will gain hands-on experience through lab sessions and a practicum, preparing them to work in a hospital setting. Training is scheduled for one evening session per week over the course of a year.
- Boston Career Institute, with campuses in Brookline, Malden and Lowell, offers a Hospital Central Service Technician course. Students will be eligible to take a certification exam upon completion of the program.
- Quinsigamond Community College in Worcester offers a Sterile Processing Technician Certificate. The program promises to train students through interactive, hands-on experience.
- Bunker Hill Community College, with campuses in Boston and Chelsea, offers a Central Processing Certificate Program. Graduates will be prepared for positions in healthcare and industry upon graduation.
Accreditations for Sterile Processing Technicians
Organizations such as the International Association of Healthcare Central Service Materials Management (IAHCSMM) offer certification to sterile processing technicians. Although not a requirement to work in the field, acquiring credentialing can lead to significant career advancement and increased wages. Additionally, having an official accreditation can impress hiring managers, improving your prospects for employment.
Massachusetts Wages for Sterile Processing Technicians
According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), sterile processing technicians in Massachusetts made an average annual wage of $50,490 in 2019. In fact, the state boasted some of the highest salaries for sterile processing technicians in the nation, led only by Alaska. By comparison, the mean annual wage nationally was $39,530 in the same year.
Sterile Processing Technician Opportunities
There is plenty of good news for sterile processing technicians in Massachusetts, as the career is facing steady growth over the next ten years. In fact,Projections Central has predicted a 5 percent growth rate between 2018 and 2028.
In Massachusetts, sterile processing technicians are hired by such organizations as Massachusetts General Hospital, Mount Auburn Hospital, Boston Medical Center, Clinical Management Consultants, and Nesco Resources.