Thinking about a career as an ultrasound technician? Unlock the secrets and rewards of this profession with details like how long you can expect to be in school to the average day in the life.
What is an Ultrasound Technician?
Ultrasound Technicians, or Diagnostic Sonographers, are professionals who use sound wave technology to view images of organs and other internal structures in their patients. They use and maintain ultrasound equipment to scan and identify images used to diagnose medical conditions, diseases and abnormalities. These medical professionals may also prepare patients for other procedures, record patient medical history and present their findings to teams of other medical practitioners working on the patient’s health and diagnosis.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows positive increases for professionals looking to seek employment in the Ultrasound Technician sector of medicine. Projected job growth for Ultrasound Techs between 2016 and 2026 is 17% in the U.S. (with the average job growth for all occupations being 14%).
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Have you already gone through the training or have been a practicing technician for a few years and are looking to take your career on the road? Freedom Healthcare offers Ultrasound Tech jobs all over the nation! Take a look at our open Ultrasound Technician positions.
Becoming an Ultrasound Technician
If you’re in the early stages of your career, you’re probably wondering how long it takes to become an Ultrasound Technician. Typically, the education and training process to get your Sonography certificate takes two years. More advanced or specialized practices can take up to four years depending on the specialty. Sonographers commonly hold an Associate's Degree in Applied Sciences with a focus in Diagnostic Medical Sonography.
Not quite sure if medical imagery is for you? See these insider details from respected sonography professors about the profession before applying. The education process for sonographers requires both classroom and laboratory work and can be acquired by those who are already working in positions, such as radiology or cardiovascular technician.
Where Do Ultrasound Technicians Work?
In 2016, the BLS reported 79% of Ultrasound Techs worked in hospitals. However, there are many workplace options, including hospitals, doctor’s offices, medical/diagnostics labs, outpatient centers and other healthcare facilities. This includes working in emergency rooms and sonography departments where technicians will visit individual patient rooms.
What Does A Ultrasound Technician Do?
The reason there are so many technicians working in hospitals is due to the fact that many newly graduated Ultrasound Techs start off in the hospital and work their way around to different facilities. Depending on the demand, shifts are roughly eight hours. In those eight hours, between 10-15 ultrasounds are conducted, including paperwork and documentation for each reading.
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Throughout your day, you’ll interact with several people from patients, to physicians and other practicing technicians. Ultrasound Techs spend the bulk of their day standing (wear comfy shoes!), and are prone to frequent schedule changes, making this job best for a fast-paced and adaptable worker.
Typical Pay and Employment Outlook For Ultrasound Technicians.
In 2016, the BLS also reported the median annual wage for Diagnostic Medical Sonographers was $64,280 with an entry level Associate’s degree. Annual wages will depend on geographic location, facility location (hospital, office, diagnostic center, etc) and years of experience and specialty.
Ready to hit the road with your career? Contact us or view Freedom’s available Ultrasound technician positions! Do you know someone who is or might be interested in joining the Freedom family? Check out our referral bonus program for further reward details.