Central Sterile Processing and Distribution

This course is designed to prepare individuals for the expanding field of sterile processing of medical instruments. Skills learned will include how to properly disinfect, process, store, and issue both sterile and nonsterile supplies and equipment for patient care.

Students will learn to operate sterilizing units and monitor effectiveness of the sterilization process.  Graduates will be eligible to take the Certification Board for Sterile Processing and Distribution, Inc., earning the title of Central Sterile Processing and Distribution Technician (CSPDT).

Employment opportunities include acute care hospitals, surgical centers, and clinics where invasive procedures are performed.

Employment of certified sterile processing and distribution technicians is up 24% in the last year with starting pay around $16 to $18 per hour.

Upon successful completion of this program, the student should be able to:

  1. Apply principles of medical equipment sterilization and disinfection in the health care arena.
  2. Demonstrate competency in the skills and knowledge required for an entry-level sterile processing technician.
  3. Apply principles of distribution of instruments, supplies and equipment.
  4. Use critical thinking to recognize, analyze and solve problems related to sterile processing.

If you have questions or you would like to receive information by email, please complete the contact form below.

Frequently Asked Questions

Students must be at least 18 years of age, have their high school diploma or equivalent (GED) as well as a Social Security card (no exceptions). If you are new to GTCC and you received your high school diploma in another country, it must be approved prior to registering for this course. Please email Jesse Cross at jlcross@gtcc.edu to have this done.

The next offering will be in Spring 2024.  To be added to the email database to stay informed, please eamil Amy Byerly at aleonard@gtcc.edu to request to be added.

The registration fee for this course is $204.50. Financial aid is not available for the class as it is a noncredit certificate course. 

There is a textbook required and the cost is $144.10 including tax.  

Our campus stores page provides store hours and links to online stores for each campus.

More information:

  • Students will be REQUIRED to purchase a student ID badge for $5.
  • Students will need to bring in cash, check or card to the cashier’s office on each campus.

NOTE: The evening class students MUST come to a campus (Greensboro or Jamestown) during the day as the cashiers all close at 5 p.m..

You may be eligible for scholarships when taking this training program. Each scholarship has a time-sensitive application deadline. Click on the link below to learn if you might meet the requirements for one of these scholarships.

These scholarships, if awarded to you, will cover tuition first and then may cover other course related expenses. Once your application is received, you will be notified by email if it is granted, and the amount provided.



Students are required to get the following vaccinations. You will be asked to turn these into your instructor within the first week of class, except for the 12-panel drug test. These are mandatory and no exceptions are allowed. You will not be allowed to complete the course without these. 

  1. COVID Vaccination (1st and 2nd Vaccination OR 1-step Johnson & Johnson)
  2. NEGATIVE TB skin test OR NEGATIVE Quantiferon blood test OR NEGATIVE Chest XRay within the past year
  3. Td OR TdaP (within the past 10 years)
  4. MMR (2-vaccination series or titer)
  5. Varicella (2-vaccination series or titer)
  6. Hep B (3-vaccination series or Declination)
  7. Flu Vaccination (If in class between September 1 and March 1)
  9. National Criminal Background Check - Your background check MUST be a National check, not a State or County check.  You may use any company that offers this service. For additional information, please click the following link:  https://checkr.com/resources/articles/national-background-checks.


Starting  your first day:

  • Dark gray or light blue scrubs
  • Closed-toe shoes with backs are required.
  • Hair must be off shoulders and not touch your collar.
  • Fingernails MUST NOT pass fingertips and NO artificial nails may be worn at any time during the course.  

For further questions about course requirements, please email Mary Wilkinson at mawilkinson@gtcc.edu.


  • The attendance policy is very strict. You may be dismissed from the program if you are absent more than once or tardy more than three times during the theory and clinical portions of the class. You will be dismissed if you are more than five minutes late or absent during clinical.
  • You will be given one multiple-choice question final exam. You must score 80% on the final to receive your certificate.
  • You must be able to accept constructive criticism, control your temper and follow directions carefully.
  • Disrespectful, interruptive, disruptive, impatient behavior toward the instructors, fellow students, staff, or clinical staff will not be tolerated at any time.
  • You may be dismissed if the instructor suspects you are a safety risk in clinical.
  • You may be dismissed if you are caught cheating, suspected of alcohol or drug use on campus or before class.
  • If you are dismissed from a class for any reason, you are not eligible for a refund.
  • The GTCC Health Careers Continuing Education Division will admit and allow students to progress and participate in a clinical experience only if eligibility requirements are met and demonstrated. Eligibility requirements may include, but are not limited to, an acceptable criminal background check, acceptable Office of the Inspector General (OIG) review, and negative drug screen from an approved National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA) approved laboratory.

  1. Disability Services: The health careers faculty and staff want all students to be successful.  If you have any special needs, please contact the DisAbility Access Services department prior to starting your class so that arrangements can be made for the first day.  Please call (336) 334-4822, ext. 50113. 
  2. English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) or (ESL): If you feel you need assistance with comprehension of the English language, you may call (336) 334-4822, ext. 53107.  This is highly encouraged prior to enrolling in an NA 1 course.
  3. Learning Resource Centers: As a student in a health career training program, you have access to the Learning Resource Centers on all three campus locations.
  4. Veterans Resource Center: If you think you are eligible for VA/Military Education Benefits, please contact the Department of Veterans Affairs at 1-888-GIBILL1 or 888-442-4551.  Eligibility is ultimately determined by the Department of Veterans Affairs, not GTCC.  For additional information, you can contact Cara High, Coordinator, at (336) 334-4822, ext. 50521.

Veterans and active-duty military personnel with special circumstances are welcome and encouraged to communicate these to your instructor or any member of the health careers administration. Thank you for your service to our country.

Yes. Health facilities that serve as student rotation sites have enacted requirements that ensure that students and faculty who enter their facilities meet the same qualifications as any potential hires. GTCC requires criminal background checks (CBC), Office of the Inspector General Reviews (OIG), and drug testing of students in such curriculum programs as have clinical or internship placements at health facilities where these screenings are required. Accordingly, completion of the CBC, OIG Review, and submission of a negative Twelve Panel Urine Drug Screen report from a National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA) approved laboratory is required by GTCC prior to the first assignment/student experience at any requiring health facility partner.


  1. Once accepted to a program of study, the student will receive written instructions that define the screenings and detail how to complete the above requirements.
  2. The process will be carried out with a company selected by the college after review for the most cost-effective customer service.
  3. Results are verified and sent directly by the company to the contact person at the clinical facility for review no less than 10 days prior to the scheduled arrival of the student.
  4. The clinical facility will notify the program department chair of the student(s) with any findings that would preclude the assignment of the student in their setting.
  5. The department chair will confirm the manner of the review with the facility to ensure that no error was made.  The department chair will at no time be privy to the actual summary of results for the CBC, OIG review, or drug screen.
  6. If a criminal charge or conviction occurs while the student is enrolled and is assigned to requiring agency, the student will be immediately removed from the placement until a review is conducted. The final decision will rest with the clinical agency as to any possibility of reinstatement at the site.
  7. Should a student be barred from completing clinical assignments with partnering agencies, GTCC will not be able to ensure the completion of program requirements and graduation competencies.
  8. Inability of a student to complete program requirements and graduation competencies will result in suspension from the Health program.
  9. Any student suspended from a Health Program can avail themselves of the standard GTCC processes for appeal, grievance, and/or readmission.

Contact Health Careers