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House of Representatives
Session of 2017 - 2018 Regular Session


Posted: June 27, 2017 01:12 PM
From: Representative Judy Ward
To: All House members
Subject: Surgical Technologists Education and Certification Act
In the near future, I am planning to introduce legislation that provides for the practice of surgical technologists in health care facilities across the Commonwealth. The legislation would create a Certified Surgical Technologist (CST) standard for newly practicing surgical technologists.

Surgical technologists are essential members of the operating room team – responsible for setting-up and managing complex surgical equipment, instruments and supplies throughout the surgery; managing specimens such as skin grafts and organs; and overseeing the sterile integrity of the operating room, including hundreds of instruments that are used in even the most basic surgery. Remarkably, despite their critical role during surgeries, surgical technologists are the only member of a surgical team who are not required to meet minimum threshold competency requirements.

The following states have passed education and certification legislation: Idaho, Indiana, Massachusetts, Nevada, New York, New Jersey, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee and Texas, with pending legislation in several other states. In addition, Washington, Virginia, Colorado, Arkansas and Illinois have surgical technologist registration laws.

The American College of Surgeons has issued a formal statement supporting accredited education and certification of surgical technologists.

During surgery, it is the surgical technologist who is ultimately responsible for preventing surgical site infections and adverse surgical events. As such, the training, education and experience of a Certified Surgical Technologist would serve to arrest and abate these surgical site infections, protect patients and save lives.

Please join me in co-sponsoring this important legislation.

Introduced as HB1805