How to Become a Sterile Processing Technician in Mississippi
In order for surgery and other medical procedures to be safe, medical environments and equipment must be sterile and free of contamination. Sterile processing technicians, also called medical equipment preparers or central service technicians, play an important role in preparing, sterilizing, cleaning and storing the medical equipment and supplies needed. These technicians help reduce the risk of infections in both patients and staff.
Requirements for Becoming a Sterile Processing Technician in Mississippi
Sterile processing technicians in Mississippi usually obtain formal training through a community college or other postsecondary school. You’ll need to be a high school graduate or the equivalent to qualify for admission to one of these programs, and you may need to be at least 18 years old. Formal training programs usually include courses in math and sciences along with sanitization and sterilization, infection control and surgical equipment identification. Admission to training programs may also require passing a criminal background check and a drug screen.
Training to Become a Sterile Processing Technician in Mississippi
Preparing for a career as a sterile processing technician requires knowledge of topics such as microbiology, medical terminology, techniques for controlling infections and how to clean, operate and maintain medical instruments and equipment. Examples of Mississippi schools that offer programs that can prepare you for this career include:
- Hinds Community College. Located in Raymond, MS, this community college offers a certificate in surgical technology, which can be completed in one year. The program begins annually in August and prepares students to work extensively with surgical instruments, supplies and equipment
- Pearl River Community College. This college in Hattiesburg, MS, offers a Surgical Technology program, which can be completed in less than two years and prepares students to work as central supply technicians or surgical technologists.
- East Mississippi Community College. This two-year program prepares students for entry-level jobs including central sterile supply technician or surgical technologist. It’s a 65-hour program consisting of 20 hours of general education and 45 hours of courses focused on surgical technology.
Do You Need Certification to Become a Sterile Processing Technician in Mississippi?
The state of Mississippi doesn’t require certification to work as a sterile processing technician. Most employers prefer candidates who can demonstrate they have the required knowledge to do the job. Certification can be obtained through the Certification Board for Sterile Processing and Distribution (CBSPD) or the International Association of Healthcare Central Service Management (IAHCSMM).
Potential Salary and Job Outlook for Mississippi Sterile Processing Technicians
The salary range for sterile supply processing technicians in the state of Mississippi as of October 2020, according to Salary.com, was between $27,260 and $34,800, with an average annual wage of $30,810.
Most careers in healthcare including sterile processing technicians have steady growth opportunities. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a job growth rate of approximately 6 percent between 2019 and 2029, which is faster than average for all occupations.
Your Career as a Sterile Processing Technician in Mississippi
If you’d like a career in healthcare in Mississippi that’s behind the scenes and doesn’t involve hands-on patient care, this may be the career for you. In your career as a Mississippi sterile processing technician, you’re likely to be working at a fast pace. You may be working with harsh cleaning agents, and there’s some risk of exposure to blood or bodily fluids, so you’ll usually wear personal protective equipment such as gloves, face masks and gowns.
Many job opportunities can be found in hospitals as well as dentist offices or outpatient surgical clinics. Some settings involve just daytime hours while others may include working evenings and weekends. Opportunities to work in this field can be found all over Mississippi, especially in cities such as Jackson or Gulfport.