Central supply technicians are also known as medical equipment preparers. A central supply technician performs duties similar to those of a surgical technologist. Surgical technologists and supply technicians perform sterilization and medical set-up procedures before surgery. Generally, a surgical technologist needs a certificate, diploma or associate’s degree. A central supply technician needs a high school diploma coupled with sterilization knowledge and mechanical aptitude. Although some duties overlap, central supply technicians earned nearly $11,000 less than a surgical technologist in 2010.
National Mean Wages
The variation in earnings probably relates to the lower education requirements. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, central supply technicians earned a national annual mean wage of $30,350 or $14.59 per hour in 2010. Surgical technologists earned a national annual mean wage of $41,310 or $19.86 hourly, which computes to a $10,960 wage difference.
Central Supply Median Wages
Central supply technicians earned an annual median wage of $29,490 or $14.18 per hour. Technicians in the lower 10th percentile earned an annual mean wage of $20,460 or $9.84 hourly. Supply technicians in the lower 25th percentile earned a median hourly wage of $11.71 or $24,360 annually. Wages for central supply technicians in the 75th and 90th percentiles exceeded the median wage by $6,130 and $12,040 in 2010, respectively. Based on BLS reports, central supply technicians in the 75th percentile earned $35,620 or $17.13 while supply technicians in the 90th percentile earned $41,530 annually or $19.97 hourly.
Surgical Technologist Median Wage
BLS wage statistics report an annual median wage of $39,920 for surgical technologists, which equals a median hourly wage of $19.19. Technologists in the lower 10th percentile earned $28,100 annually or $13.51 per hour. The lower 25th percentile earned an hourly wage of $16.06 or annual median wage of $33,400. Those in the 75th and 90th percentiles earned $47,570 and $57,330 or $22.87 and $27.56 an hour, respectively.
Wages by Industry
General medical and surgical hospitals employed 32,940 central supply technicians at an annual mean wage of $30,820 in 2010, according to BLS occupational wage reports. Outpatient care centers paid 2,710 central supply technicians an annual mean wage of $31,340. Colleges, universities and professional schools paid $31,790 to 770 central supply technicians. The federal executive branch employed 60 central supply technicians at an annual mean wage of $38,700. Employment services employed 50 central supply technicians at an annual mean wage of $35,040. Specialty industries employed 660 supply technicians at $34,790 per year.
2016 Salary Information for Surgical Technologists
Surgical technologists earned a median annual salary of $45,160 in 2016, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. On the low end, surgical technologists earned a 25th percentile salary of $36,980, meaning 75 percent earned more than this amount. The 75th percentile salary is $55,030, meaning 25 percent earn more. In 2016, 107,700 people were employed in the U.S. as surgical technologists.