WNCC hoping to offer Surgical Technologist course

In a move to accommodate a growing need for Surgical Technologists, WNCC hopes to offer a two year Associate Degree in Surgical Technology next fall. The primary responsibilities of the job include maintaining the sterile field, handling instruments, providing sterile items, anticipating the needs of the surgical team, and assisting the surgeon. On Wednesday, the Western Community College Area Board of Governors approved a motion to take the proposed program to the Coordinating Commission for Post-secondary Education for consideration.

WNCC President Todd Holcomb says there is a growing movement toward having a surgical technologist in the operating room. He says Regional West Medical Center contacted them asking if they could partner with the college to create such a program at WNCC.

Holcomb says the college worked with a consultant to create a curriculum that gives students the opportunity to have that certified Surgical Technologist position. He says they believe it will meet regional needs going into the future.

Holcomb says the program was created so that students can complete it in two years. Students in the program will hone their skills through clinical experience at several hospitals or regional medical centers within western Nebraska. Holcomb says that way they get hands on experience, working with surgeons and physicians to learn the skills they need to be successful.

The career track also provides a solid healthcare background which prepares the surgical technologist to pursue other careers of his or her choosing. Graduates of the course will sit for a national certification exam.

If the Coordinating Commission approves the program, the earliest WNCC could offer courses is fall of 2014.

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