An ultrasound technician career in Tennessee
Ultrasound technology is extensively used in the medical diagnostic field. It is utilized to examine internal organs and their conditions. It is also used to monitor the progress of a pregnancy and the growth of a fetus in the womb. You need to be a qualified ultrasound technician if you are looking for a career in this line. Based on where you are located, there are specific courses and training programs that you will have to complete before you can begin to work.
What are the requirements?
In the United States right now, there are two states that make it mandatory for you to have both certification and licensing in order to be an ultrasound technician. Tennessee is not one of those. However, considering how competitive the field is, it would be ideal for a candidate to register with a credentialing entity. The ideal one for this career choice is the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS).
Furthermore, a Tennessee employer would prefer candidates who have taken a sonography training course that offers an accredited program. There are several courses of varying durations that you may look into:
A fast-track program is for a medical professional with experience on their side. If you are looking to specialize, then this is definitely a course you should take.
The most in demand is the two-year program, and it is largely important for its quality and the hands-on experience that it provides. If you have certain basic qualifications, you may even finish the course 6 months earlier.
If you know where your career is headed early on, you may choose to work towards a bachelor’s degree. This is generally 4 years long.
Look through the range of courses available. Some of them require you to be prequalified by having a nursing degree or an equivalent qualification.
Always steer clear of short term courses as these do not give you the kind of training that is needed on the job. Once you have completed your course, you may choose to improve your candidature by opting for a credential. Once you are registered with the ARDMS, you may work towards getting this credential. Here are the steps:
To take the ARDMS examination, you must fulfill certain prerequisites. The ARDMS website has a list of all these requirements and they cover education and clinical ultrasound/vascular experience. You will also need corresponding documentation for the same. There are 9 different paths from which you can choose.
You will then have to pay an application fee which is approximately $200 but is subject to change. Complete the online application.
You will have to clear two examinations – Sonography Principles and Instrumentation (SPI). The first consists of 120 multiple-choice questions that must be completed in two hours. The second is where you select a specialty examination which could be the abdomen or the breasts. It could also be fetal echocardiography or neurosonology and in the field of obstetrics and gynecology. The duration of these exams vary significantly. There are a range of practice tests on the ARDMS website.
You may reactivate your status for a renewal fee of $60 approximately
When you complete these steps, you will be closer to being a professional ultrasound technician and stand a better chance of getting a good break.
How long it takes you to qualify to be a professional level ultrasound technician in Tennessee will vary depending on the kind of course you take and how long you take to complete it. It may vary from 12 months to 4 years approximately.
In general, the employment prospects for a qualified individual in Tennessee are good as the demand is on the rise. There are constantly new positions that need to be filled in hospitals, care centers, diagnostics and other such places. The average beginner’s salary you may expect is around $21,000.
The technology in the ultrasound field continues to grow, and it would help you gain an upper hand if you keep abreast of the technology. If you are interested in careers that are supplementary to the main medical field, then this is a good choice for you.