What Does a Radiologic Technologist Do?

So, you finally want to make a change in your career. You crave something more – a career you are passionate about. If you are passionate about technology and have a big heart that constantly seeks to help others, you might want to consider becoming a radiologic technologist. This means you’ll spend most of your time handling patients and operating high-tech machinery. You will work alongside nurses and doctors to capture images to help uncover various conditions. Besides, being a radiographer offers  the potential for further advancement and specialization, making it a fantastic career choice for people looking to venture into the healthcare field.

medical professional performing MRI

Who is a Radiologic Technologist, and What is their scope of practice?

Also known as radiographers, radiologic technologists perform medical diagnostic imaging exams. Such exams include X-rays, Computed Tomography (CT) scans, and Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). You can also find some of these experts specializing in more particular procedures and techniques. Some of these specialized procedures include mammography, cardiovascular-interventional radiography, and sonography. The images are then forwarded to the doctor, who reads and interprets them for disease diagnosis, treatment and monitoring.

Ideally, a radiologic technologist will prepare the patient for the exam procedure, help them maintain the correct and comfortable position, and handle the equipment. These experts also have the knowledge, skill, and experience to minimize the patient’s radiation dose and intensity. They will also prepare, document, and administer various activities that are related to medications as required by the institutional policy, state and federal regulations. That said, here are some of the numerous areas in which a radiologic technologist can specialize in:

  • Mammography
    • Bone densitometry
    • Sonography
    • Cardiac-interventional radiography
    • Magnetic Resonance (MRI)
    • Computed Tomography (CT)
    • Nuclear medicine
    • Vascular interventional radiography

What Are the Academic Qualifications for Radiologic Technologists?

Typically, training to become a radiographer takes between sixteen to twenty four months to earn an associate’s degree. If you choose to enroll in Florida National University’s (FNU) radiologic technologist program, you will find flexible options perfect for someone wanting to learn while working. Some of the core classes involved in a radiologic technologist program include biology, mathematics, anatomy, chemistry, radiology theory, patient safety, positioning and medical terminology. Typically, most radiographers work approximately 40 hours per week, although they might also have evening, holidays, and weekend calls.

As of 2020, the median annual wage for a radiologic technologist was $63,710, which is anticipated to increase year over year. Note that the salary range depends on your location, employer, training, experience, and certifications. Please keep in mind that a radiographer and radiologist are two different professionals. A radiographer performs medical exams such as x-rays and other images, which helps the nurse and doctor diagnose and treat various issues. On the other hand, a radiologist is a trained physician who specializes in reading and interpreting imaging and giving diagnoses.

Having graduated from a radiologic technologist program and becoming an expert radiographic technologist gives you unlimited chances to handle and operate cutting-edge equipment and technology while making the world a better place. You will also be improving the healthcare sector while earning a living in a long, promising, and rewarding career. Whether you look to specialize in X-rays, MRI, or any other type of imaging, do not hesitate to contact FNU at 305-821-3333 for more information and expert guidance.