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About the Profession

Employment of surgical technologists is projected to grow 30 percent from 2012 to 2022, much faster than the average for all occupations. Several factors will lead to demand for surgical technologists.

Advances in medical technology have made surgery safer, and more operations are being done to treat a variety of illnesses and injuries. The aging of the large baby-boom generation also is expected to increase the need for surgical technologists because older people usually require more operations. Moreover, as these individuals age, they may be more willing than those in previous generations to seek medical treatment to improve their quality of life. For example, an individual may decide to have a knee replacement operation in order to maintain an active lifestyle.

Hospitals will continue to employ surgical technologists to work in operating rooms because they are more cost-effective than higher-paid registered nurses.

The median annual wage for surgical technologists was $41,790 in May 2012. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $29,710, and the top 10 percent earned more than $60,240.

Employment Information is from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics Web site (www.bls.gov).