New York Association of Surgical Technologists


SPRING 2014 Newsletter

Hello everyone,

I hope you each had a wonderful holiday season and are looking forward to a wonderful 2014.  The past year has been an amazing one for NYAST, and we hope to carry the momentum forward into 2014 and beyond!  Our legislative efforts of the past three years finally paid off when Governor Cuomo signed our bill into law on July 31, 2013 making certification a minimum standard of practice for all Surgical Technologists entering the field, and 15 CEUs a year a minimum standard for ALL practicing Surgical Technologists!  Thank you to every one of you who wrote a letter or sent an email to your legislators or to the Governor.  This law is monumental for the profession of Surgical Technology in New York State as well as nationally.

NYAST also enjoyed fabulous member participation at the spring conference and meeting in Syracuse, as well as an amazing attendance of over 175 people at the fall conference in Brooklyn!  We were also honored to have Senator Diane Savino, AST President Roy Zacharias and ASA President Dennis Stover at our fall conference.  We are thrilled that so many members, both practicing and students, attended these conferences and we look forward to as many, or more, at future conferences.  Our next conference is in Niagara Falls on March 15, 2014, so make your plans now to attend.  It will be another great educational event, as well as a great way to meet and make lifelong connections with fellow surgical technologists.

We also participated in our first community outreach program by collecting and donating “wish list” items to the Coney Island Lighthouse Mission at our fall conference.  Reverend Fusco and the Mission were extremely grateful for the outpouring of generosity.  A special thank you to all of the students from the various area Surgical Technology programs who attended the conference and donated lots of wonderful items!  We will be having another community outreach project at

our spring meeting, so please bring an item with you to donate!

We had six delegates at the AST national conference in New Orleans in May, and are looking for members who plan on going to Denver who wish to be a delegate at the 2014 AST national conference.  If you are interested, please contact us at boardnyast@gmail.com to have your name put on the ballot. We will be electing delegates at the spring conference in Niagara Falls.

The spring conference will also be our annual business meeting at which we will be electing our Secretary and 3 Board of Directors.  If you wish to run for any of these offices please make sure you let us know ASAP and submit your Consent to Serve and resume to submit BEFORE the election on March 15th.  Contact the board at boardnyast@gmail.com  to let us know your desire to run, or with any questions. The consent to serve can be found at ast.org under meetings/forms.

As always, if you have any questions, comments, concerns or ideas, please feel free to contact any of the board members or myself at any time.

Happy New Year and I look forward to seeing you in Niagara Falls on March 15th!


Beth Applegate-Debo, CST/CSFA

NYAST President


Since the passing of bill #S185-2013, which requires Surgical Technologists functioning in healthcare facilities to be certified (or complete an appropriate training program for surgical technology in the U.S. military), NYAST has been busy!

Recognition and discussion relevant to quality education leading to successful certification of Surgical Technologists has become the cornerstone of NYAST.  Partnering with Healthcare Institutions and Schools of Surgical Technology across the State was initiated at the annual Fall Conference held in Brooklyn, New York.  This initiative was launched and meant to serve as a mentorship for those Healthcare Institutions and Schools looking for assistance.  The assistance mostly requested was validation and clarity regarding the bill.

Clear demographics of the bill were given to NYAST representatives and were presented on a volunteer basis to said Institutions and Schools when requested.  The push is to continue with the mentorship program and to encourage attendance at NYAST annual conferences (held in both the Fall and Spring of each year).

Moving forward, NYAST will continue to embrace and advocate for higher quality patient care through the enhancement of the profession of Surgical Technology and quality education.

Linda Kerwin CST, RN, MA, MSN, Ed.D.

 NYAST Vice-President

Chair NYAST GAPA Committee


A delegate is an active member of the state assembly who is aware of the happenings of AST at the state and national level and wants to represent the members of the state assembly in the hall of delegates at the national conference.  They must  attend the opening ceremony, both business meetings, the candidates forum, and the election. They also must speak to the candidates and ask questions so they can make an informed decision about who will best represent the needs and desires of the membership of the state assembly. This is an elected position, therefore you will be representing those who elected you and are expected to uphold that trust. We will be electing 6 delegates and 6 alternates to represent the members of NYAST at the conference in Denver  May 27-30, 2014. If you plan on going to Denver and wish to be a delegate, please contact us a boardnyast@gmail.com BEFORE March 8, 2014 so we can include your name on the delegate ballot!                                  

                                                NYAST Board

Community Outreach:   Our Community Outreach for the Spring Conference will be with Heart, Love and Soul, Inc, 939 Ontario Avenue, Niagara Falls, NY 14305.  The director of Heart and Soul is Sister Beth Brosmer and she is very appreciative of us donating items of need to this worthy organization. Heart, Love and Soul (H&S) was founded by the prayer group of Sacred Heart Parish more than 30 years ago. Aware of the needs of the neighborhood, members of the prayer group were inspired by Jesus’ words in Matthew 25, “Whatever you do to the least of your brothers and sisters, you do to me.” The original food pantry grew into a dining program. Meals were prepared in the store front on Pierce Avenue and taken to a church to be served. The church location changed as space was available. In 2003 the current location was purchased and renovated.

The pantry, kitchen and dining room are all at this site.

 We are dedicated to feeding those in need & providing opportunities to improve their quality of life.


  We ask that you please bring an item or two on the following list to our spring  conference at Niagara Falls Culinary Institute. If you are not attending, but still wish to contribute, contact Beth Applegate-Debo at b.debo@verizon.net.

 The items that would best serve the needs of the Heart, Love and Soul organization at this time are:

*toilet paper (lots of it)

*small bottles of dish soap

*small bottles of laundry detergent

*travel size toothpaste, deodorant, soap

*travel size hand sanitizer

*travel size shampoo

*tooth brushes

*comb/small brush

*any non perishable  food items (with new regulations No or Low salt and No or Low sugar products are appreciated)

*BJ’s or grocery store gift cards for food or paper goods