Radiologic Technicians are health care professionals who provide diagnostic imaging examinations using x-ray, computed tomography, magnetic resonance imaging, and mammography.
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What is a Radiologic Technician?
Radiologic Technicians are health care professionals who provide diagnostic imaging examinations using x-ray, computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), mammography, ultrasound, and nuclear medicine. They work closely with patients, explaining procedures and ensuring their comfort. Radiologic Technicians also work with physicians and other health care professionals to provide quality patient care.
A radiologic technologist is an allied health professional who uses ionizing radiation to produce images of the human body. These images are used by physicians to diagnose and treat injury and disease. Radiologic technologists are commonly called X-ray techs or RTs.
Radiologic technologists must complete an accredited radiography program and earn a certificate or associate’s degree in radiography. Some states require licensure or certification. Once employed, RTs usually complete a period of on-the-job training.
Radiologic technologists work in hospitals, clinics, physician offices, diagnostic centers, and other healthcare facilities. They typically work full time, although some jobs are part time or per diem. They may work evenings, weekends, or holidays to meet the needs of their patients and employers.
Education and Training
Radiologic technicians must complete an accredited educational program and obtain a state license, if required. Education requirements vary by state, but most programs last 2 years and lead to an associate’s degree.
Some 4-year colleges and universities offer bachelor’s degree programs in radiologic technology. These programs typically include liberal arts courses, as well as instruction in medical imaging and radiographic physics and positioning.
Most radiologic technology programs include clinical education, which allows students to work with patients and gain experience in the field before graduation.
In order to be certified, radiologic technicians must complete an accredited program and pass an exam administered by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT). Certification by the ARRT is required in order to work in many hospitals and clinics, so it is important for aspiring radiologic technicians to make sure that their program meets ARRT standards. Once certified, radiologic technicians must complete continuing education credits on a regular basis in order to maintain their certification.
There are also several voluntary professional organizations for radiologic technicians, such as the American Society of Radiologic Technologists (ASRT) and the American College of Radiology (ACR). These organizations offer members access to resources, networking opportunities and continuing education credits.
What Does a Radiologic Technician Do?
Radiologic technicians are medical professionals who provide diagnostic imaging examinations using X-ray, computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and mammography. They work closely with radiologists, who are doctors who specialize in interpretation of diagnostic images, to provide quality patient care. Radiologic technologists must be able to follow instructions and protocols, and they must be able to work independently.
Radiologic technicians are trained to take X-rays, which help doctors diagnose problems in patients’ bones and internal organs. They are also trained to take computed tomography (CT) scans, which create three-dimensional pictures of the inside of the body, and to perform mammograms, which are X-rays of the breasts used to detect breast cancer. In some states, radiologic technologists may also be trained to provide other types of imaging procedures, such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and ultrasound.
Radiologic equipment includes x-ray machines, computed tomography (CT) scanners, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machines, and mammography equipment. Technicians use this equipment to create images of the human body to help doctors diagnose and treat patients. They also use this equipment to provide treatments, such as cancer treatments.
Radiologic technicians work closely with patients, explaining procedures and ensuring that they are relaxed and comfortable. RTs must be able to put patients at ease, as many procedures can be unsettling. During some procedures, such as MRIs and CT scans, patients may be confined to small spaces for long periods of time.
Radiologic Technician Salary
Radiologic technicians are in high demand and the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a 12 percent growth in the field from 2018 to 2028. With more than 330,000 jobs currently available, now is a great time to enter the field. Radiologic technicians use imaging to diagnose and treat patients. They typically work in hospitals, clinics, and physicians’ offices, but may also find employment in other settings, such as research laboratories. Let’s take a look at what radiologic technicians do and how much they can expect to earn.
Factors that Affect Salary
Radiologic technicians are in high demand, and their salary potential is very good. However, there are a number of factors that can affect how much money a radiologic technician makes.
-Geographic location: Radiologic technicians in urban areas tend to make more money than those in rural areas. This is because there is usually a greater demand for radiologic services in urban areas.
-Experience: Radiologic technicians with more experience generally make more money than those with less experience.
-Specialization: Radiologic technicians who specialize in a certain area, such as computed tomography (CT) or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), often earn more than those who do not specialize.
-Education: Radiologic technicians who have completed a bachelor’s or master’s degree program tend to make more money than those who have only completed an associate’s degree program.
Radiologic technologists are in high demand. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects that employment of radiologic technologists will grow by 21% from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations. An aging population and increasing rates of chronic diseases, such as diabetes, will require more diagnostic imaging procedures, such as X-rays and MRIs.