According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for ultrasound technicians is expected to grow by more than 39% by the year 2022, which is much faster than average for all occupations. If you’re considering a career as a sonogram technician, you may have numerous questions, which is why we are offering answers to some of the most commonly-asked ones below.
How much do ultrasound technicians make?
The Bureau of Labor Statistics also reports that the median pay for an ultrasound technician was $60,350 per year in 2012, which amounts to an average hourly wage of $29.02. Workers in California earned an average of $89,870, while technicians in Puerto Rico made an average of $24,320.
Do ultrasound technicians work only with pregnant women?
While it’s true that a good number of ultrasound patients are pregnant women, sonograms are not performed exclusively on expectant mothers. Ultrasounds may be performed on any organ of the body such as the kidneys, lungs, heart and stomach. As such, ultrasound technicians may see men and women with a variety of medical conditions.
Where do ultrasound technicians work?
The majority will work in the office of a general practitioner or a medical specialist such as a cardiologist, gynecologist or urologist. Some will also work in hospitals, research facilities, or medical laboratories.
What is a typical work day like?
An ultrasound technician usually begins the workday by preparing equipment and examining rooms for patients. He or she may then pull a patient’s chart and confirm appointments to ensure everything that’s needed is available. Once patients arrive, the sonogram technician may greet them and then show them to the examining room. After a procedure, a technician may answer questions or assist a patient with getting dressed. At the end of the workday, performing maintenance on equipment or archiving digital files could be required before going home for the evening.
Do ultrasound techs work normal business hours?
The majority of them will work during normal business hours, yet some may work evening, weekend, or overnight shifts when employed in a hospital to ensure coverage for emergencies.
What are some good qualities for an ultrasound technician to possess?
An ultrasound technician is often required to spend a great deal of time sitting, standing or kneeling in one position. He or she may also need to lift or move patients, which requires a great deal of physical stamina. Good hand/eye coordination and excellent vision are needed in order to correctly interpret results. A basic knowledge of human anatomy and the systems of the body are required, and are typically covered in ultrasound technician training courses.
What are some typical job duties?
In addition to performing ultrasounds, technicians may also be responsible for maintaining equipment, preparing patients for a procedure, analyzing test images and updating a patient’s medical charts. In some instances, they may also be responsible for submitting claims to insurance companies.
What type of training is required to become a sonogram technician?
Most technicians enter this career field after earning a two-year degree in sonography; however, some will earn only a career certificate or receive on-the-job training.
Is certification required for ultrasound technicians?
Certification is technically not needed in order to become an ultrasound tech, but many people voluntarily elect to obtain it. The American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS) offers a number of certifying exams, many of which will allow you to specialize in a particular type of ultrasound such as breast, abdomen, pediatric, or obstetrics and gynecology.
These are just a few questions most people have about becoming an ultrasound technician. If you have further questions, or need help finding the right training program, contact us.