Professional Licensure Disclosure

Professional Licensure Disclosure

Gulf Coast State college has been approved to participate in the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (NC-SARA). Our membership enables us to admit students to online degree programs from all 50 states and most territories, including Puerto Rico, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Online programs at GCSC that lead to licensure meet Florida's licensing requirements. Other states have their own licensing requirements, and GCSC has not made a determination about whether our curricula meet each state's educational requirements for licensure or certification. If you are interested in a program that may lead to professional licensure, make sure it meets licensing criteria in your state before you apply. Visit the NC-SARA website for more information.

Surgical First Assistant

Gulf Coast State College cannot confirm that the Surgical First Assistant Program meets all requirements for professional licensure or certification in states other than Florida. Prior to taking an online course that leads to licensure or certification, it is highly recommended that you contact the appropriate state agency where you plan to reside.

This program SFA currently meets all requirements for those who require licensure and/or registration. Please note that in the states of California, Connecticut, New Jersey, New York and Washington, there are prohibitions regarding the practice of surgical assisting. Please contact the Professional organization, Association of Surgical Assistants ( and/or for guidance and individual state requirements regarding any legislative changes for licensure or registration and the interpretation of law for each of those prohibitive states.

The more stringent state or hospital requirements for the state or employment by the hospital include completion of a program that is Commission on Association of Accredited Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) accredited, ability to use the nationally accredited certification examination credential as certified as a surgical first assistant and completion of either an AS Degree. GCSC is CAAHEP accredited, successful program completers are eligible to sit for the National Board of Surgical Technologists and Surgical Assistants (NBSTSA) national certification examination to use the credential CSFA, and offers both a certificate and an AS degree option. It is recommended that you check with your local facility if there are no applicable state laws in your state to verify local requirements to practice as a SFA. The SFA functions as directed by the licensed surgeon.

Surgical assistants licensure/certification requirements as of 8/18/2018

The following states have placed prohibitions on the practice of surgical assisting:

  • California (CA)
  • New Jersey (NJ)
  • New York (NY)
  • Washington (WA)

The following states require licensing of surgical assistants:

  • Nebraska (NE)
  • Kentucky (KY)

The following states offer optional licensing for surgical assistants:

  • District of Columbia (DC)
  • Texas (TX)

The following states require registration of surgical assistants:

  • Colorado (CO)

The following states offer optional registration/title protections for surgical assistants:

  • Illinois (IL)
  • Tennessee (TN)
  • Virginia (VA)

NOTE: Indiana Surgical Assistants must hold the designation of Certified Surgical First Assistant (CSFA) to perform certain tasks and functions.