Every person who works in healthcare fills an important role. Patients and family members are most familiar with doctors and nurses because they interact with them the most, but people who work behind the scenes fill critical roles, as well. Sterile processing techs, often known as sterile techs, are a prime example of this. They are in demand everywhere, but people who work in this field may find that California offers salaries that are particularly attractive.
Education and Certification
After graduating from high school, an individual may enroll in a program to learn about sterile processing which involves carrying out a specific set of procedures in order to decontaminate and sterilize used medical instruments so that they can be placed back into appropriate sets and safely reused on new patients. This position may also be referred to as a central processing technician, central service technician, central sterile processing technician, or other similar title.
In some cases, certification may be required. It’s available through the International Association of Healthcare Central Service Material Management (IAHCSMM) and the Certification Board for Sterile Processing and Distribution (CBSPD). Candidates are required to take a test to obtain certification, which can pay off in terms of achieving a higher salary.
Context for Salary Trends
When examining salary trends for sterile techs in California, it’s helpful to begin with a broader perspective. Nationally, the average rate for a sterile processing technologist is $15.26 per hour, and hourly rates range from $11.53 to $20.44 per hour. As with many industries and roles, salaries may increase over time as a sterile tech gains experience.
In addition, it’s important to keep in mind that sterile techs have options when it comes to workplaces. Some work in hospitals, but others work in outpatient care centers, physicians’ offices, dental offices, or specialty hospitals. The salary can vary depending on the site; although hospitals employ the great majority of sterile techs, the salary may be higher in other venues, including specialty hospitals.
Specific to California
To begin with, the average salaries in California can be quite a bit higher: in Sacramento, it’s $18.34 per hour, which puts it 10% above the national average. The hourly rates range from $17.79 to $19.61 per hour.
California is home to 365 Healthcare Staffing Services, and our opportunities there reflect the fact that salaries are typically higher there than elsewhere in the United States. Recent job listings included a position in San Bernardino with a range of $21 to $32 per hour. Another position, in Hollywood, offered $20 to $29 per hour. A third example, for a position requiring IAHCSMM certification, offered $24 to $28 per hour.
Are You California Dreaming?
At 365 Healthcare Staffing Services, we specialize in the recruitment and placement of healthcare professionals in per diem, travel, and permanent assignments in healthcare facilities across the country. Whether you are thinking about California or anywhere else in the United States, we can help you find your next assignment. Give us a call at 310.436.3650 today; we’d love to work with you.