Surgical Assistant Salary

The average Surgical Assistant in the United States can expect to rake in roughly $20.85 per hour. Total cash compensation to Surgical Assistants approaches anywhere from $31K on the lower end to $78K on the higher end; in exceptional cases, this can include more than $2K from bonuses and upwards of $24K from profit sharing. Residence is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by career duration. Women make up the majority of Surgical Assistants (69 percent) who completed the questionnaire. Some workers in this field — one-fourth — are not awarded benefits. Medical coverage is reported by a strong majority and dental plans are enjoyed by more than half. Job satisfaction is high and work is enjoyable for most Surgical Assistants. The figures in this overview were provided by individuals who took PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$34,954 - $93,135
(Median)
$35K
$56K
$93K
MEDIAN: $55,547
10%
50%
90%

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$14.31 - $32.53
(Median)
$14
$21
$33
MEDIAN: $20
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$32K$64K$96K
Salary
$34,954 - $93,135  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $2,145  
Profit Sharing
$408.51 - $24,468  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$31,327 - $78,298  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 20 Jun 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 177
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$17$34$51
Hourly Rate
$14.31 - $32.53  
   
Overtime
$17.40 - $50.02  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $2,145  
   
Profit Sharing
$408.51 - $24,468  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$31,327 - $78,298  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 20 Jun 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 605
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Job Description for Surgical Assistant

Surgical assistants provide assistance surgeons during medical procedures in the operating room. They work directly under surgeons and must follow their orders at all times. Surgical assistants' work also includes preparation for surgeries, including following antiseptic techniques and sterilization procedures. Individuals in this position must also consistently check that required equipment is functioning properly and does not need maintenance. Work hours vary greatly depending on the employer and position, but often shift flexibility and long shifts are required. Surgical assistants generally must be on call for long periods, but actual work during these times varies based on demand. This position involves potential exposure to hazardous environments, ranging from body fluids and chemicals to radiation and diseases.

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Surgical Assistant Tasks

  • Examine patients, collect, and update health histories and convey discharge instructions.
  • Document, process, and track patient and procedure information in electronic systems.
  • Assist during operations and procedures by providing tools, sterilizing, and performing medical tasks.
  • Prepare patients and rooms for procedures.

Common Career Paths for Surgical Assistant


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As Surgical Assistants transition into upper-level roles such as Oral Surgery Assistants, they may actually see their salaries decline sharply. The average Oral Surgery Assistant earns a much lower $35K on average. Surgical Assistants most frequently become Surgical Dental Assistants and Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery Assistants even though median compensation is $14K lower and $13K lower, respectively.

Surgical Assistant Job Listings

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Popular Skills for Surgical Assistant


Survey results suggest that Surgical Assistants put a wide range of professional skills to use. Most notably, skills in Orthopedics, General Surgery, Robotics, and Open Heart are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts in pay of 18 percent. Skills that seem to negatively impact pay include Oral Surgery. Those proficient in General Surgery are, more often than not, also skilled in Oral Surgery.

Pay by Experience Level for Surgical Assistant

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Experience does not seem to be a strong driver of pay increase in this role. Relatively untried employees who have fewer than five years of experience earn around $42K on average. People who have worked for five to 10 years can expect a higher median salary of $47K. For Surgical Assistants, 10 to 20 years of experience on the job amounts to an average salary of $55K. Surgical Assistants with more than 20 years of experience report incomes that are only modestly higher; the median for these old hands hovers around $60K.

Surgical Assistant Reviews

What is it like working as a Surgical Assistant?

Surgical Assistant in McLean:
"Interesting."
Pros: I love working with people. My main goal is to make sure patients have a great experience no matter how scared or anxious they are.
Cons: Because we are a surgical office, we usually only see patients two or three times and their treatment with us is over.

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Experience Affects Surgical Assistant Salaries



National Average
$48,000



Skills That Affect Surgical Assistant Salaries



up arrow 16%

Open Heart
up arrow 11%

Obstetrics/Gynecology (OB/GYN)
up arrow 9%

plastic surgery
up arrow 9%

up arrow 7%

National Average
$48,000


Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 85 votes.

Gender

Female
69 %
Male
31 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
3%
1-4 years
32%
5-9 years
23%
10-19 years
27%
20 years or more
15%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 73% dental benefits Dental: 53%
vision benefits Vision: 41% employee benefits None: 25%
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