How Much Does a Surgical Tech Make a Year

By Jacqueline DeMarco · February 20, 2024 · 4 minute read

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How Much Does a Surgical Tech Make a Year

The median pay for surgical techs is $56,350 annually, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Working as a surgical tech can be a great way to build a fulfilling career in the medical field. Read on to learn more about a surgical tech’s role and salary, as well as the pros and cons of this job.

What Are Surgical Techs

The role of a surgical tech can vary greatly but generally involves assisting surgeons with tasks, such as closing surgical sites and making incisions. Other common duties include:

•   Readying supplies for surgery

•   Sterilizing equipment

•   Getting the operating room surgery-ready

•   Physically preparing patients for surgery

•   Assisting surgeons during surgery

•   Maintaining sterile environment

•   Keeping track of supplies during and after surgery.

While some of these tasks are solitary, many involve interacting with patients and other members of the medical team. Given this degree of interaction, this can be a very rewarding career choice, although it may not be a good job for antisocial people.

Surgical techs often complete training at a community college or vocational school, typically requiring nine to 24 months of study. For this reason, being a surgical tech can be a good career without a college degree.

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How Much Do Starting Surgical Techs Make a Year?

Here’s information about what a surgical tech can make as an entry-level salary and later on in their career. The lowest 10% of surgical tech earners make less than $35,130 as of 2022.

However, there is a lot of room to move up in this field. The top 10% of earners make on average $95,060, meaning they are very close to making a $100,000 salary per year.

If someone is looking to optimize their earning potential, they should look for a surgical tech role in a high-paying setting. The type of medical office a surgical tech works in can affect how much they earn:

•   Offices of physicians: $62,400

•   Outpatient care centers: $59,740

•   General medical and surgical hospitals; state, local, and private: $58,460

•   Offices of dentists: $48,810.

Recommended: The 50 Highest Paying Jobs in the US

What is the Average Salary for a Surgical Tech?

Those considering training to be a surgical tech may wonder about pay grades. The truth is, that answer depends a lot on the state they end up working in. The median hourly pay rate for this role is $27.09, but as the table illustrates below, can vary greatly by state.

The figures here for average salary and wages are arranged from highest to lowest paying.

What Is the Average Surgical Tech Salary by State for 2023


Annual Salary

Monthly Pay

Weekly Pay

Hourly Wage

Oregon $112,962 $9,413 $2,172 $54.31
Alaska $112,406 $9,367 $2,161 $54.04
North Dakota $112,389 $9,365 $2,161 $54.03
Massachusetts $111,047 $9,253 $2,135 $53.39
Hawaii $110,015 $9,167 $2,115 $52.89
Washington $107,487 $8,957 $2,067 $51.68
Nevada $106,280 $8,856 $2,043 $51.10
South Dakota $106,220 $8,851 $2,042 $51.07
Colorado $104,887 $8,740 $2,017 $50.43
Rhode Island $104,629 $8,719 $2,012 $50.30
New York $99,697 $8,308 $1,917 $47.93
Delaware $98,598 $8,216 $1,896 $47.40
Vermont $97,356 $8,113 $1,872 $46.81
Virginia $97,172 $8,097 $1,868 $46.72
Illinois $97,143 $8,095 $1,868 $46.70
Maryland $95,489 $7,957 $1,836 $45.91
Nebraska $93,450 $7,787 $1,797 $44.93
Missouri $92,871 $7,739 $1,785 $44.65
California $92,615 $7,717 $1,781 $44.53
South Carolina $92,071 $7,672 $1,770 $44.26
Pennsylvania $91,330 $7,610 $1,756 $43.91
New Jersey $91,143 $7,595 $1,752 $43.82
Oklahoma $90,500 $7,541 $1,740 $43.51
Maine $90,453 $7,537 $1,739 $43.49
Wisconsin $90,262 $7,521 $1,735 $43.40
North Carolina $90,170 $7,514 $1,734 $43.35
New Hampshire $88,816 $7,401 $1,708 $42.70
Idaho $88,596 $7,383 $1,703 $42.59
Texas $88,000 $7,333 $1,692 $42.31
Kentucky $87,715 $7,309 $1,686 $42.17
Wyoming $87,407 $7,283 $1,680 $42.02
Minnesota $87,181 $7,265 $1,676 $41.91
Michigan $86,830 $7,235 $1,669 $41.75
New Mexico $86,691 $7,224 $1,667 $41.68
Indiana $86,252 $7,187 $1,658 $41.47
Ohio $84,743 $7,061 $1,629 $40.74
Arizona $84,468 $7,039 $1,624 $40.61
Connecticut $84,039 $7,003 $1,616 $40.40
Mississippi $83,449 $6,954 $1,604 $40.12
Iowa $83,345 $6,945 $1,602 $40.07
Montana $83,195 $6,932 $1,599 $40.00
Arkansas $82,892 $6,907 $1,594 $39.85
Alabama $82,157 $6,846 $1,579 $39.50
Utah $80,963 $6,746 $1,556 $38.92
Tennessee $80,904 $6,742 $1,555 $38.90
Kansas $78,574 $6,547 $1,511 $37.78
Georgia $76,536 $6,378 $1,471 $36.80
Louisiana $76,117 $6,343 $1,463 $36.59
West Virginia $70,535 $5,877 $1,356 $33.91
Florida $67,735 $5,644 $1,302 $32.57

Source: Ziprecruiter

💡 Quick Tip: Income, expenses, and life circumstances can change. Consider reviewing your budget a few times a year and making any adjustments if needed.

Surgical Tech Job Considerations for Pay & Benefits

It’s very common for surgical techs to hold full-time positions and as such, they tend to qualify for traditional employee benefits like paid time off, retirement accounts, and healthcare. This can be a very demanding role that may require being on call during weekends, holidays, and nights. Shifts can also be very lengthy and last longer than a typical eight-hour workday.

Pros and Cons of Surgical Tech Salary

Still not sure if working as a surgical tech is the right fit? Here are some pros and cons associated with this role’s salary and job requirements.



•   Median annual salary is high ($56,350)

•   May not need a college degree

•   Employment opportunities expected to grow by 5% from 2022 to 2032

•   Around 8,600 openings for this role per year

•   Long shifts that can surpass eight hours

•   Physically demanding work

•   Can be on call during nights, weekends, and holidays

Recommended: High-paying Trade and Vocational Jobs in 2024

The Takeaway

With a solid median annual salary of $56,350 and the top 10% of income earners in the surgical tech field making more than $95,060, there is a lot of earning potential in this role. The job can be demanding and being on call is often part of the job description, but the high pay can be worth the sacrifices.


Can you make 100k a year as a surgical tech?

It may be possible to make $100,000 a year as a surgical tech for those with a lot of experience or who work in high-cost-of-living areas where standard pay is higher. The top 10% of surgical tech earners make more than $95,060 annually, so the potential to earn six figures is within reach.

Do people like being a surgical tech?

Many people enjoy working as a surgical tech, especially if they have an interest in the medical field and helping people. However, those who are introverts or who consider themselves antisocial may not enjoy this job.

Is it hard to get hired as a surgical tech?

While you have to meet very specific qualifications to work as a surgical tech, if you do, you can likely find job openings in this field. Between 2022 and 2023, surgical tech employment is projected to grow by 5%. This growth rate is faster than average compared to other occupations.

Photo credit: iStock/SDI Productions

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Non affiliation: SoFi isn’t affiliated with any of the companies highlighted in this article.


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