What Are the Career Options for A Radiology Technician?
11 December 2009
Attending a radiology program to become a radiology technician actually affords a student with many different opportunities in a longterm career. Continuing education credits enable students to branch out in fields apart from those availably solely to radiology technicians, and there are quite a number of areas that initially are open to new program graduates. X Ray technicians, diagnostic medical sonographer and radiology technician are the basic employment options, with more opportunities opening up the greater the level of education undertaken by the student. In general, career options for new radiology technicians include hospital settings, physician’s private practice, nursing care facilities, ambulatory health care facilities, and medical laboratories.
Many radiology technicians choose to specialize in a particular field. Basic radiology programs can prepare these students to continue education so that they may focus on the area of their particular interest more solely. Moving on from a career as a radiology technician to something more specialized typically involves more programs and coursework, and can lead to careers in nuclear medicine or diagnostic imagery, as well as potential positions as a medical sonographer, x ray technician, or a cardiovascular technician. Three areas of particular demand are those that can perform Computerized Tomography (CT, which involves three-dimension image used in diagnosing conditions and assessing treatment. Mammography, which involves the use of x ray imagery in diagnosis of breast cancer and treatment- this often requires additional education in pathology and mammography. Also, Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), which uses non-ionizing radio frequencies to create a three-dimensional image.
Areas one may find a radiology technician career useful are mammography, ultrasounds in obstetrics and gynecology as well as other diagnostic capacities, and cardiology. There are actually many areas where a radiology technician may find themselves working with physicians to aid in a diagnostic capacity and prepare patients for those procedures, as well as keeping clear notes and relaying information. Earning potential in this field varies, however, according to the numbers given by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, potential earnings are good. The Bureau shows that the middle fifty percent of radiology technicians earn between $32,000 and $46,500 with a median annual income of $40k. The highest earnings shown by radiology technicians was upwards of $55,400, with the top ten percent often making more than that amount.
In total, more than half of all radiology jobs will be found in hospitals, with others being in private physicians offices, however, the amount in private practice is seeing a growth in recent years. Career outlook is generally very good with the Bureau of Labor Statistics also projects a growth faster than the average for all other occupations through the year 2012. As it stands, many employers have been reporting a lack of radiology technicians to fill the openings that they have within their practices and hospitals, and this does indicate that the potential for a radiology technician to secure employment is quite favorable.