OR Assistant
Operaring Room Assistants

Operating Room Assistant Fast Fact

An operating room assistant works under the supervision of a RN providing support to the surgical team. An operating room assistant must be knowledgeable about safety precautions, aseptic techniques, sterilization techniques, care and maintenance of surgical equipment and emergency procedures.

Related articles to Operating Room Assistant

Operating Room Assistant: Employment Information for Students Considering a Career as an Operating Room Tech or Assistant
Operating Room Assistants, also called surgical techs or surgical assistants, must complete a certificate or associate's degree from an accredited program in order to practice. The educational track for Operating Room Assistants is offered by various colleges, vocational schools, universities and hospitals. The field has growth potential and advancement opportunity in any state.


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Operating Room Assistant Career Overview and Employment Outlook

Job Requirements of an Operating Room Assistant

Operating room assistants, or surgical technologists, assist surgical staff in tasks required before, during and after surgery. Prior to surgery, operating room assistants will prep a patient by cleaning and shaving the incision area. The surgical technologists will also gather pre-operation information on the patient needed by the surgeon, nurses and anesthesiologist. During the operation, the operating room assistant monitors the staff to ensure the sterility of the surgical area is not compromised. The surgical technologist may also prepare and sterilize the tools needed by the surgeon. The operating room assistant continues to work after the operation, guiding the patient back to the recovery room.

Educational Requirements for an Operating Room Assistant

Operating room assistants generally get their training from one of 400 programs accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP). Many of the skills required by operating room assistants are learned on-the-job, with some surgical technologist learning their trade in the military or even the hospitals themselves. Programs for operating room assistants range in time from 9 to 24 months and are offered by many institutions including vocational schools, junior colleges, universities and more. Following graduation, operating room assistants also have the option to become certified by the CAAHEP as a surgical technologist. Surgical technologists with two years of on-the-job training can also be certified by the National Center for Competency Testing.



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