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.
Job Growth Outlook and Salary Expectations
Based on the updated data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics for 2022, Sterile Processing Technicians in Massachusetts earn an average annual wage of $49,840. The lowest 10% of earners in this field make about $37,270, while the highest 10% can earn upwards of $66,380. This is a significant increase from the 2019 average annual wage of $50,490. When compared to the national average salary of $41,480 for this occupation, Massachusetts offers a competitive wage for Sterile Processing Technicians.
National vs. Massachusetts Salaries:
Salaries and Percentiles by Region in Massachusetts:
|Region||10% Low||25% QL||Median||75% QU||90% High|
|Barnstable Town, MA||$37,580||$46,850||$54,290||$65,610||$79,120|
Medical Equipment Preparers Employment Trends in Massachusetts
In Massachusetts, the field of Medical Equipment Preparers, which includes Sterile Processing Technicians, is experiencing significant growth. Employment in this occupation was at 1,800 in 2020 and is projected to rise to 2,070 by 2030, marking a 15% increase. This growth rate is substantially higher than the national average of 5% for the same period. Additionally, Massachusetts is expected to have around 260 job openings each year from 2020 to 2030, which includes new positions and replacements.
|Location||Employment (2020/2022)||Projected Employment (2030/2032)||Projected Growth (2020-2030/2022-2032)||Projected Annual Job Openings (2020-2030/2022-2032)|
Sources of Data:
- For Massachusetts-specific data, the source is Projections Central, which provides the 2020-2030 long-term projections.’For Massachusetts-specific data, the source is Projections Central, which provides the 2020-2030 long-term projections.
- For the national data, the source is the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), which offers the 2022-2032 employment projections.
Working as a Sterile Processing Technician in Massachusetts
In Massachusetts, Sterile Processing Technicians are part of a growing field, with employment projected to increase by 15% from 2020 to 2030, significantly outpacing the national average. These professionals, who play a critical role in preventing infection by sterilizing medical equipment, can expect to find a robust job market with approximately 260 openings each year. The state offers competitive wages for the role, with an average annual salary of $49,840, which is above the national average, reflecting the demand and cost of living in the region. This growth and financial incentive make Massachusetts an attractive state for those pursuing a career in sterile processing.