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Most surgical techs work in hospitals, but people in this field may also work in other environments, including physicians’ offices, dental offices, or outpatient surgical facilities. If you are considering this field, it may be helpful to learn a little more about some of the different working environments.

Working in a hospital

Surgical techs who work in hospitals are important members of the team in the operating room. They may be known as surgical technologists or operating room (OR) technicians, and they work alongside surgeons, surgical assistants, nurses, and anesthesiologists during medical procedures. Some surgical techs work on a wide variety of surgical cases, but others may specialize in a particular area, such as cardiac surgeries or obstetrical/gynecological surgeries.

They have specific duties before, during, and after surgery. In addition to getting the patient and the operating room ready for surgery, they sterilize equipment, hand instruments to the surgeon, help dress the wound, transfer patients to the recovery room, and more. The duties may vary slightly depending on the case, specialty area, and so on.

Working in a physician’s office

Working in a physician’s office may be different in many ways from working in a hospital. One key difference is that the types of procedures done in a physician’s office will generally be far less complex than many that are done in a hospital. For example, most office procedures may use local anesthesia, rather than general.

The environment itself is different, as well. In a hospital environment, surgical techs may work with numerous doctors, nurses, and other personnel. In a medical office, the surgical tech would work only with the doctors, nurses, and others in the practice. The hours may also be more limited, and this may be appealing to people who prefer a more predictable work schedule.

Working in either environment

A surgical tech may have certain duties in a hospital or a physician’s office. These may include preparing the surgical space, sterilizing equipment, preparing patients for procedures, and passing instruments during the procedure. A surgical tech’s educational program will cover all of the knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary for either of these work environments.

Just as certain hard skills are necessary to work as a surgical tech, some so-called soft skills are equally essential whether a surgical tech works in a hospital or a physician’s office. These soft skills may include communication, organization, computer skills, teamwork, and collaboration.

Which environment suits you?

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. If you are a surgical tech considering a new role, give us a call at 310.436.3650. We would love to work with you!

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