A Criminal Record-Background?
5 Hardcore Facts about a Surgical Tech Career or Training, &
WARNING: You might not like what you're about to
read regarding your background & your future!
You'd be surprised how often I get emails from people asking me questions about whether or not they can train or be employed as a surgical tech with a criminal record or background.
And because I've received so many inquiries from people with criminal charges ranging from traffic tickets, to dui, to drug charges, AND from people who have misdemeanors, felonies, or case's pending, I thought it would be best to create a quick article for all who have asked & for all who want to ask....
First of all, if you're concerned about whether or not there is something in your background that may prevent you from working and/or training for a career as a surgical tech, you may want to do a little record searching of your own.
Here's a resource I recently discovered where you can search for court records and do your own background checks:
5 Hardcore Facts about a Surgical Tech
Career/Training & a Criminal Record or Background
A criminal record or background, conviction, misdemeanor, felony, etc; will not prevent one from sitting for a surgical tech national certification exam
Currently, as long as you have met the educational, clinical, or experience criteria for the particular national exam you plan to sit for, there isn't anything documented where a criminal record of any sort will prevent you from sitting for said exam.
A criminal record or background, conviction, misdemeanor, felony etc; should not prevent one from a surgical tech education.
This particular fact will be primarily based on the school or program's specific policies.
Just know that most schools & programs are in business to educate you, not judge you.
However, it is not uncommon for a surgical tech program to allow you entry into the program if you have a criminal record provided you sign a waiver that they have made it clear that it may be a challenge finding employment after graduation with a criminal record or background.
That being said, if something in your background is making you question your plans to enroll or apply, call the school and ask them directly.
Most hospitals & related medical facilities will do a background check to include all aspects of your history, i.e. criminal, residential, employment, financial, etc.
AND because most hospitals will do background checks, don't even think about being dishonest on your application. They will find out if they do a background check.
Most hospitals & related medical facilities will give you an opportunity to explain.
Listen, we've all made mistakes and we all have a past to some degree. Nobody is perfect but God!
Now, I'm not saying that we all have criminal records, but even a speeding ticket is considered a criminal blemish on your record...
The point here is that most facilities are often willing to give you the opportunity to explain anything on your record that may be questionable.
There is an example of this fact "On A Personal Note" at the end....
Do not let something from your past prevent you from accomplishing a future goal.
Like I said, every single person reading this has made some type of mistake at one point or another in their lives.
Again, maybe not criminal, but....
We all have a skeleton of some sort in our closets & if you tell me you don't, then you're just not being honest or you're reading this from a prenatal womb...
Just realize that we as humans are not perfect & are subject to err!
That being said, do not let anything from your past prevent you from accomplishing anything you desire in your future.
The reality of this fact is that sometimes we may just need to adjust our future goals to one degree or another....
The Bottom Line
Hard Core Truth is This:
A criminal background of any sort MAY quite possibly prevent you from working or training as a surgical tech or any other professional in the healthcare world.
Although background checks are the norm for most medical facilities, that does not mean something in your past will absolutely prevent you from getting hired in the future.
On A Personal Note
I've known surgical techs in the past who have had criminal records and still got hired in the surgical arena.
I also know a surgical tech with years of experience who had a little misdemeanor and got turned down by a facility even though the operating room wanted to hire them.
The reason this person was denied employment after the O.R. offered them a job was because they lied on their application and when human resources did a background check, it came back positive.
Although human resources would have given this person the chance to explain, they were denied employment because of the lack of honesty.
NOW, with all of this being said, there is an old saying that goes something like this:
Time heals all wounds...
The more time you have between today & the "officially documented record" the greater your chances are that the record itself will have less of an effect on your future.
So there you have it....
There really isn't an absolute 100% clear cut answer as to whether or not you'll have a career in the surgical tech world with a criminal record or background.
Although a criminal record will probably increase the challenge of getting hired, I can only say as a matter of fact that at this point, most schools will allow you to train, and both of the national certifications will allow you to sit for the exams.
And on a bit of a side note, I can also say as a matter of fact, testing positive from any type of non-prescribed illegal chemical (drug) will surely disqualify you as a student or potential employee.
BUT, then again, schools & programs have been know to give second chances based on completing a rehab program & some type of probationary status.
Medical facilities on the other hand might be FAR LESS Lenient. Remember, just say NO!
I hope this helps in one way or another.
Again, if you want to do your own background check prior to moving forward, take a look here:
Until next time,
Robert Prince, CST
Surgical Tech Success Handbook