Home Programs & Courses Full-Time Studies Medical Device Reprocessing Technician
Students demonstrate how to handle sterile instruments.

Medical Device Reprocessing Technician

Open for Fall 2020

Closed for Fall 2020 (International)

Closed for Winter 2020

Length: 21 Weeks
Credential: Certificate
Available: Full Time Classroom or Online

Program Highlights

Learn to safely clean, package, sterilize, store and handle sterile supplies and instruments in preparation for a career as a medical device reprocessing technician or sterile processor in hospitals, doctors’ offices, dental clinics and other health care facilities where surgeries are performed.

Also available part-time through Continuing Education.

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Tuition and fees per year*

Year 1: $6,848

*Tuition, fees, books and supply costs are subject to change


This is a competitive program. If applicants meet the admission requirements they will be assessed based on additional criteria. Applicants will be offered admission to this program if they’re qualified through the competitive process and space is available.

When can you apply?

  • Applications for fall 2020 are accepted Oct. 2, 2019, to Aug. 15, 2020.
  • Applications for winter 2020 of this program open on May 1, 2019 and are accepted until the program start date.   
  • This program does not accept international students effective Fall 2020 intake. There are many program options for international applicants – find out more.
Term Program start
Fall 2020 Sept. 8, 2020
Winter 2020 Jan. 6, 2020 

Program Details

Program description

As a five-month fast-paced program offered full-time, the Medical Device Reprocessing Technician program provides entry-level training for the critical role of cleaning, packaging, sterilizing, storing and handling of sterile supplies and instruments, with a focus on infection prevention and control and aseptic techniques. It includes a practicum, arranged by SAIT, at an accredited clinical facility. This type of employment requires flexibility (shift work), manual dexterity and good health.

The Medical Device Reprocessing Technician program is 21 weeks in length and includes classroom instruction with integrated practical learning experiences. This is followed by 400 hours of practicum, of which eight weeks take place at a clinical site.

Students in this program require access to a personal computer and the Internet to facilitate completion of the required courses.

This program is also available to complete part-time online through distance education. Visit the Medical Device Reprocessing Technician distance education page for details

Your career

Graduates find work as medical device reprocessing technicians, sterile processors, service aides, and in related positions in health care medical device reprocessing departments, operating rooms, doctor’s offices, dental clinics, surgical centers, and specialty areas at acute care, community care and extended care facilities. Graduates are often hired into casual positions initially which usually progress to full-time positions within one year of hire. In order to find employment, many graduates must relocate across Alberta and potentially even throughout Canada.

  • Graduates of the Medical Device Reprocessing Technician program have a 95% employment rate

Student success

In order to be successful in this program, applicants must have basic computer literacy including the ability to use word processing and communication software. Educational interaction in this program depends on these basic computer skills, and medical device reprocessing technicians work with hospital information systems. It is the student's responsibility to ensure adequacy of these skills prior to program admission.

  • Students with higher secondary or post-secondary marks usually experience greater success in SAIT programs.
  • Students who experience success in this program and career:
    • Have effective communication skills in English
    • Are detail-oriented in the care they provide and enjoy working in a team environment
    • Must be able to lift up to 18 kg/40 pounds and push/pull 114 kg/250 pounds on an ongoing basis
    • Demonstrate good motor coordination and manual dexterity and are able to perform repetitive tasks in a noisy, stressful environment
    • Able to stand or walk for long periods of time with repeated bending at the knees and waist
    • Have no sensitivities to latex, disinfection and sterilization chemicals or to the sight of blood and human tissue.

Credentials and accreditation

After successfully completing this program, graduates will receive a SAIT Medical Device Reprocessing Technician certificate. The program arranges for graduates to challenge the International Association of Healthcare Central Service Materiel Management (IAHCSMM) certification exam for international recognition of their competencies as a Central Service Technician (CRCST). This allows international portability.

SAIT's Medical Device Reprocessing Technician program is also recognized by the Canadian Standards Association (CSA) and graduates are eligible to challenge the CSA Canadian certification exam to become a certified Medical Device Reprocessing Technician (CMDRT).

Certification from either IAHCSMM or CSA is required to practice as an MDRT in Alberta.

Note: Your MDRT certificate and a high school diploma are required to challenge the CSA certification exam. There are no formal accreditation arrangements at this time. Please contact the School of Health and Public Safety for more information.

Note: This program is eligible for the Canada-Alberta Job Grant.

Transfer options

Once completed, this SAIT credential may be eligible for transfer credit at another post-secondary institution. Visit transfer options to learn more about the transfer agreements currently available to SAIT graduates and incoming students.

Have questions? Write to us at transfer.options@sait.ca.

Admission Requirements

Admission and selection

  • Fall 2020 start: Applications are accepted Oct. 2, 2019 to Aug. 15, 2020.
  • Winter 2020 start: Applications open May 1, 2019. 
  • This program does not accept international students effective Fall 2020 intake. There are many program options for international applicants –  find out more.

Admission requirements

Completion of the following courses or their equivalents:

  • At least 50% in English Language Arts 30-1 or English Language Arts 30-2
  • At least 50% in Science 20 or Biology 20 or Chemistry 20, or at least 60% in Science 24
  • All applicants must demonstrate English language proficiency prior to admission, including students educated in Canada.

SAIT accepts high school course equivalents for admission. If you don't meet the requirements, consider Academic Upgrading.

SAIT evaluates international documents for admissions. After you've applied, consider our  international document assessment service if your education is from outside of Canada. 

Winter 2020 direct entry: four-step process

Step 1: Read the program information to see the qualities needed for student success.

Step 2: Ensure that you meet all of the admission requirements listed above.

Step 3: Apply to Medical Device Reprocessing Technician and submit your transcripts and/or anticipated final grades.  

  • Admission will be extended on a first-qualified, first-offered basis until the program is full. 

Step 4: Log in to mySAIT.ca to check your admission status and monitor changes to your application status

Failure to meet anticipated final grades will result in offers being rescinded.

Additional Requirements 

The following requirements must be completed prior to students starting in the Medical Device Reprocessing Technician program. Applicants will be emailed additional information once an offer has been extended.

  • Complete and submit an Information and Career Investigation package
  • Submit a practicum awareness document
  • These documents will be emailed to you from clinical.supportservices@sait.ca

Fall 2020 competitive entry: seven-step process 

Step 1: Read the program information to see the qualities needed for student success.

Step 2: Ensure that you meet all of the admission requirements listed above.

Step 3: Review the selection information to understand the process and deadlines 

In the selection process, applicants will be ranked according to the following criteria:

  • Continous learning, customer service, communication and teamwork
  • Career and program awareness 

Step 4: Apply to Medical Device Reprocessing Technician and submit your transcripts.

Step 5: Log in to mySAIT.ca to check your admission status. If eligible, your status will indicate that you're "in selection."

Step 6: Complete the selection package that will be emailed to you.  

  • Once you're in selection, the package will be emailed to you from clinical.supportservices@sait.ca. You will be given one week to complete the online selection package. 

Step 7: Continue to monitor changes to your application status through mySAIT.ca.

Failure to meet anticipated final grades will result in offers being rescinded.

Communication during selection

Email is the primary source of communication during the selection process. Ensure your personal email account is managed appropriately to receive our emails, files and communications.

We recommend you add  clinical.supportservices@sait.ca and the sait.ca domain to your safe senders' list or you risk missing critical email messages. Please check your junk mail or trash folders for communication from SAIT. The program does not follow-up on selection packages which are not returned.

Practicum requirements

The eight weeks of practicum are not necessarily consecutive and may not be continuous with the end of the theory portion of the program (for example, there may be a gap between finishing the theory and starting the practicum). The School of Health and Public Safety has many practica partners located in Alberta and across Canada. Practicum placements in Calgary are limited and students may be required to relocate outside of Calgary for practicum.

Successful candidates will be informed of the allocation of their practicum placement by the program. There is no guarantee that students will be placed at their desired practicum location. Special considerations of personal circumstances will not be given in regards to assigning practicum placements. Students will be responsible for fees associated with practica such as entrance requirements, relocation and travel costs. 

In compliance with the practica agreements with our clinical partners, successful candidates will be requested to provide proof of the following requirements:

  • Updated immunization records: Most practicum sites require students to demonstrate updated immunization status prior to attending practicum. The receiving practicum site has the right to refuse students who cannot prove they have met all the required immunizations.

  • Security clearance: According to the Protection for Persons in Care Act, our practica sites require that students obtain a Police Information Check including Vulnerable Sector Check, prior to going on practicum. Any criminal code offence for which a pardon has not been received may be a deterrent to a student's entry into practicum, and therefore will result in an uncompleted program or non-graduating status. Successful candidates will be asked to provide a clear Police Information Check including Vulnerable Sector Check record to the School of Health and Public Safety main office by orientation day. Please review the security clearance process document for specific details. Be aware that record must be dated no earlier than 90 days prior to your program orientation day (typically orientation day is held the week prior to the first day of class).

  • Health and wellness status: Due to the demanding nature of the work in the health care field and Occupational Health and Safety requirements, the health care field has a strong focus on health and wellness. Students with a medical condition or disability that may impact them in a practicum setting are strongly advised to discuss concerns with the program academic chair and/or SAIT Accessibility Services as soon as possible upon acceptance into the program. Please review the attached document for guidance on entering an allied health program with a medical condition or disability. 

More details on the practica requirements per program are outlined on a pre-orientation website for successful candidates.


Program outline

  • SAIT students are offered an opportunity to develop lifelong learning skills in an online environment. One or more courses in the program are offered fully or partially online.
  • View additional Medical Device Reprocessing Technician program information including course-specific descriptions and requisites.

This program is a 21-week certificate offered over the fall/winter semesters or winter/spring semesters.

Course codeCourse nameCredit
INFC-206* Infection Control and Decontamination 1.5
SPRO-227* Packaging Materials and Techniques 1.5
SPRO-235* Sterilization Methodology 1.5
STDP-246* Supply Distribution and Standards 1.5
SPRO-255* Professional Practice 1.5
INST-263* Instrumentation 1.5
PRAC-296 Practicum 7.5
Program total 16.5
*Available by correspondence and/or online learning. The courses must be completed within the time frame shown in the program outline. Please contact the Academic Chair prior to enrolling in any online or correspondence courses.


Students must attain a PGPA and/or a CGPA of 2.0 or better in each semester and pass the necessary prerequisite courses to progress through the program. To qualify for graduation, students must pass all courses, attain a CGPA of 2.0 or better and complete course requirements within the prescribed timelines.


Domestic Tuition and Fees*

Year Tuition fees SAIT fees SAITSA fees Health & Dental Plan 2019/20 total
1 $5,863 $462 $288 $235 $5,648


Campus Athletic and Recreation Fee: $160
Universal Transit Pass (UPass): $302 - Check eligibility here.

Health and Dental Fees

Domestic Students 

  • Health Plan: $110
  • Dental Plan: $125
  • For students with existing health and/or dental plans, please refer to the SAITSA website for information on opting out.

Books and supplies*

  • Students are responsible for any additional expenses related to their practicum including relocation costs to a practicum site outside of Calgary.
  • Students may be required to hold either the International Association of Healthcare Central Service Material Management (IAHCSMM) or the Canadian Standards Association (CSA) certification for the purpose of gaining employment. The IAHCSMM certification exam fee is approximately $125 and the CSA certification exam fee is approximately $263. Students are responsible for paying these exam fees.
  • There is a fee associated with obtaining a Police Information Check including Vulnerable Sector Check, payable to the Police or the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP).
  • Books and supplies are approximately $400.
  • Students must have a personal computer and access to the Internet. Most classes are taught at SAIT, but some require online access. All courses require additional self‐study.
  • Students must have their immunizations reviewed by the SAIT Health Clinic. There is a $75 charge to review vaccine and medical history. Any vaccines to be administered will result in additional charges.

Find out about tuition and financial aid.

* Tuition, fees, books and supply costs are subject to change.


School of Health and Public Safety

Inspiring Stories

With a passion for helping people and an appreciation for the focus on patient care provided in hospitals, Christopher felt the MDRT program was a great fit for him. 

Allea was surprised by the amount of memorization required as part of the Medical Device Reprocessing Technician program, but was able to be successful with the support of her instructors. She hopes to use her certificate as a stepping-stone to explore the medical industry further. 

Instructors prepared students so well, with thorough hands-on training in classes and making them familiar with the technical terms, that there were no surprises once practicum started, says Shelby.

Numerous job opportunities in the administrative side of health care open up with a certificate from this program, which combines theory with hands-on instruction on everything from taking blood pressure to working with medical records, says Lori.

Working with different instruments and physically learning exactly how it's done in the field blurred the lines between school and career for Jaida, preparing her for a smooth transition.

Christopher White
Medical Device Reprocessing Technician | 2018

"What surprised me about the program was how fast-paced it was," he says. "There is a lot to learn in a very short time so you definitely have to stay focused and on-top of your assignments." 

Allea Tauzon
Medical Device Reprocessing Technician | 2018

"The instructors are really helpful. They want you to succeed in the program and will do anything to help you with it." 

Shelby Hiltz
Medical Device Reprocessing Technician | 2016

“You’re learning the job and you’re totally prepared when you finish the course,” she says. “We are literally doing the job.”

Lori Hanninen
Medical Device Reprocessing Technician | 2012

“Advancements in the latest electronic medical record technology are reinforced as students use a practical approach to learning,” she says.

Jaida Krossa
Medical Device Reprocessing Technician | 2017

"There wasn't a huge difference between school and work."

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