Orthopedic Technician Certification and Training Programs

You can train to become an orthopedic technician through a certificate or 2-year degree program in orthopedic technology. In addition to training, you'll need to accrue work experience and pass an examination in order to become certified in orthopedic technology. Read more about the education process, and explore the job duties of orthopedic technicians. Schools offering Medical Assisting degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Training Is Available to Me?

Many community colleges offer certificate or associate's degree programs in orthopedic technology. Most of these programs are only available in campus-based formats; online programs in this field are rare. In most cases, you need to earn a high school diploma prior to enrollment. Additional prerequisites may include current CPR certification and completion of a human anatomy course. A few programs look for students who have prior experience in medical assisting.

Programs may include courses like musculoskeletal systems, traction device applications, orthopedic techniques and the health care system. Associate's programs may require you to complete general education coursework. Most programs also offer clinical courses or externships that require hands-on work with doctors and patients.

Training ProgramsCertificate or associate degree
CertificationExam given by the National Board for Certification of Orthopaedic Technologists
Job DutiesCast removal, crutch and walker fitting, patient education, administrative services

How Does Certification Work?

The National Board for Certification of Orthopaedic Technologists offers the Orthopaedic Technologist Certified (OTC) and Orthopaedic Technologist-Surgery Certified (OT-SC) credentials. In order to be eligible for the OTC exam, you'll need to graduate from a program approved by the National Association of Orthopaedic Technologists (NAOT). Graduates of non-NAOT programs may be able to take this exam if their programs meet NAOT standards.

In order to be eligible for the OT-SC exam, you must already have your OTC certification and at least one year of clinical experience in surgical assisting. You may retake the OTC exam twice consecutively, but if you fail all three attempts, you have to wait six months before attempting the exam again.

What Is an Orthopedic Technician?

An orthopedic technician is trained to assist orthopedic surgeons. In this position, you will adjust and remove casts, apply braces, fit crutches or walkers, educate patients and perform routine office procedures. You will also prepare patients for orthopedic surgery and may assist the surgeon. Orthopedic technicians can work in health clinics, hospitals, and the private offices of physicians.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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  • Purdue University Global

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  • Independence University

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  • Capella University

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  • Miller-Motte College

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  • Southwestern College

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