Career Education - Medical Imaging

Medical Imaging

Is it in your DNA?  

What’s Medical Imaging all about?   

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Medical Imaging professionals are responsible for providing quality images to the Radiologist. It is up to us to figure out the best way to position patients so we can get an image for the Radiologist to use to make a diagnosis. Depending upon the area we work in, we might:

  • Use radiation (or some other energy source) to produce images of the body
  • Position patients properly on the table and operate equipment
  • Calculate exposure factors of time, distance, voltage and current
  • Administer chemical mixtures by mouth or injection
  • Communicate with other health care practitioners

The perks

  • Fulfilling—Make a difference every day
  • Never a dull moment!
  • Work with a variety of patients
  • Work with other health care professionals
  • Work with the latest in technology
  • You can have a flexible schedule

You’d be a good candidate if you are…

  • Great with people
  • Intelligent
  • Not afraid to take initiative
  • Comfortable with your mechanical ability
  • Good with your hands
  • Empathetic
  • A great team player
  • Flexible and adaptable

Opportunities outside the hospital setting 

Medical Imaging professionals can work in many other places besides hospitals. Here are just a few examples of other places you can work:

  • Physicians’ offices
  • Diagnostic imaging centers
  • Outpatient clinics
  • Skilled nursing facilities
  • Medical sales
  • Product development

Opportunities outside the hospital setting 

Medical Imaging professionals can work in many other places besides hospitals. Here are just a few examples of other places you can work:

  • Physicians’ offices
  • Diagnostic imaging centers
  • Outpatient clinics
  • Skilled nursing facilities
  • Medical sales
  • Product development

There are Medical Imaging programs close by – Check them out!

  • Cabrillo College
  • Canada College
  • City College of San Francisco
  • Foothill Community College
  • Kaiser Permanente School of Allied Health Services
  • Merritt College
  • Peninsula Hospital

The benefits

  • Health care benefits
  • Retirement benefits—including a pension!
  • Paid-time off
  • Flexible schedules
  • Employee discounts
  • Tuition reimbursement
  • Hospital-sponsored degree completer programs

The pay 

Radiologic Technologist (RAPTECH)

  • Hourly pay $39 to $53
  • Annual pay $81,900 to $111,300

Ultrasound Technologist

  • Hourly pay $46 to $63
  • Annual pay $96,000 to $131,000

Nuclear Medicine Technologist (NADTECH)

  • Hourly pay $48 to $65
  • Annual pay $100,755 to $103,000

What careers are in Medical Imaging? 

Medical Imaging is a dynamic profession that has grown significantly over the past 20 years. You can specialize in one area or you can practice in as many “modalities” (specialty areas) as you want, as long as you have a license for that modality.  Here are a few of the careers available in Medical Imaging:

Medical Imaging Technologist—uses radiation or some other energy source to produce images of the body. If they need a simple one-dimensional image, the technologist may choose an x-ray. But if they need cross-sectional images, they’ll choose CT or MRI. To become a Medical Imaging Technologist, you need a two-year associate’s degree. You’ll also need to acquire specialized training and certification. To get your state license, you need to pass an exam.

Ultra Sound Technologist—uses high frequency sound waves (ultrasound) to produce visual images of organs, tissues or blood flow inside the body. To become an Ultra Sound Technologist, you need a two-year associate’s degree from a college with an accredited Ultra Sound Technologist program. And then you need to acquire specialized training and certification. You must pass an exam to get your license.

Nuclear Medicine Technologist—one of the most interesting careers in Medical Imaging because technologists use gamma rays injected into patients to convert energy into images. To become a Nuclear Medicine Technologist, you need to get an associate’s or bachelor’s degree. You then need to acquire specialized training and certification. You must pass an exam to get your state license and certification.

Lots of career growth

Jobs for Medical Imaging professionals will grow faster than most other jobs because of advances made in diagnosis, testing and treatment over the last few years. The aging population and the increase in the number of medical tests, treatments and procedures performed each year will create even more demand.