Sterile Processing Technician

IHP sterile processing

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Start your future in healthcare as the first line of defense against infection. Help keep patients safe by ensuring a clean, well-prepared medical environment.

The Job

Sterile Processing Technicians are meticulous, detail-oriented self-professed clean freaks. You will ensure the cleanliness and safety of operating rooms, tables, and equipment. You will stock, sterilize, package, and prepare tools and equipment used in surgery, careful to take proper inventory. Are you excited about the idea of working in a variety of medical settings, including general hospitals, public health clinics, private doctors’ offices, and specialized surgical centers? Pursue the Sterile Processing Technician program at the PCC Institute for Health Professionals and get a job keeping medical environments safe for patients and staff. A career as a Sterile Processing Technician may be right if you are the type of person who:

  • Isn’t bothered by blood or bodily fluids
  • Recognizes the chain of command and follows company policies
  • Demonstrates ability to work under direction, yet independently as needed
  • Has strong verbal and nonverbal communication skills
  • Can build relationships in customer service with operating room staff and vendors
  • Wants to gain mastery of best practices in all areas of sterilization

The job market for Sterile Processing Technicians is expected to continue to grow and the average mean wage in Oregon is $37,000 -$60,000 per year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Begin a rewarding career assuring pristine medical environments by enrolling in our Sterile Processing Technician program.

Upward Mobility

IHP’s Sterile Processing program provides knowledge and hands-on experience to work as a Sterile Processing Technician. Upon successful completion of our program, you may obtain certification through the Certification Board for Sterile Processing and Distribution, Inc. (CBSPD)

Once you are employed and work in a sterile processing department for 1-year, and meet a minimum number of hours performing a variety of sterile processing tasks, you may obtain certification through the International Association of Healthcare Central Service Material Management (IAHCSMM).

The Program

The Institute for Health Professionals’ Sterile Processing Technician program lasts 1 term and includes 42 hours of self-directed study and hands-on training in a hospital setting. In our program you will learn the basics of sterile processing, including:

  • Infection control and prevention
  • Decontamination, cleaning, disinfection, and sterilization
  • Surgical instruments and storage
  • Distribution and inventory control
  • Microbiology
  • Medical terminology
  • Anatomy and physiology

The Investment

$1,498 excluding book. Tuition is due at the time of registration, or students may set up a 3-month payment plan with the Portland Community College Business Office. For information about the payment plan, please visit the PCC Payment Plan webpage.


The Basics of Sterile Processing 7th Edition; workbook is optional.

*Please be advised that this book is not sold at any of the PCC bookstores. This book can be purchased online at the link listed above or at a bookstore of your choice. We encouraged students to shop for the best pricing.

The Instructor

Jerry Hutchison is currently the Manager of Central Sterile Processing at Legacy Good Samaritan Medical Center. He has 20+ years of leadership experience, mostly in healthcare. He considers himself a patient advocate, continually seeking to prevent harm to patients and teaching students to do the same. In his spare time, Jerry loves to travel, go to the beach, work in his garden, and entertain family and friends at home.


Can I use federal financial aid?

No, federal financial aid does not apply to non-credit courses. Students are required to pay in full once they are notified of their acceptance into the program.

How long does this course take to complete?

One term,  42 hours

Will this prepare me for a national certification exam?

Once you have worked in a sterile processing department for 1 year, and meet a minimum number of hours performing a variety of tasks within Sterile Processing, you may obtain certification through the Certification Board for Sterile Processing and Distribution, Inc. (CBSPD) and the International Association of Healthcare Central Service Materiel Management (IAHCSMM).

What vaccinations do I have to have?

Please see the application packet for the latest information about vaccinations.

Do I have to submit to a drug screen and background check?

Yes, students tentatively selected for the course will be asked to submit a background check to receive final approval and acceptance into the course. The approximate cost is $68.

Will incomplete applications be accepted?

No, we will not accept incomplete applications.

Upcoming Course Schedule

Don’t see the course you want? Contact us for more information.


Apply Today

Fall 2024 applications are now available. Applications are accepted from now to September 16. Admission to the program is based on a first-come, first-served basis and requires immunization records and passing the drug screen/background check. Late or incomplete applications will not be accepted.

Updated 04/30/2024


For more information, please contact Bem Hanamoto.

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