An Ultrasound Technician’s Worth in Education and Salary

Ultrasound technicians are in demand in today’s health care field. There are few health care careers these days that lets you combine the best of technology and medicine all in one place, and a career as an ultrasound technician is one of them. Ultrasound technicians work with doctors and nurses to view your body’s internal organs.

Sonograms have been around for a long time, and it is one of the most efficient and safe diagnostic procedures ever created in the medical world. It is readily available in physician’s offices, public health centers, diagnostic centers and hospitals so patients can easily find access to it. Whenever doctors need to take a peak at your body, the best diagnostic tool to use is the sonogram. With the help of an ultrasound technician, doctors can easily see how your internal organs work. A sonogram is extremely useful as it is safe and painless for patients, requiring little or no preparation at all. As such, many emergency cases that require immediate attention are thrown directly to the ultrasound room.

Ultrasound technicians meet their clients for the first time in the laboratory or office. During this short time, they must establish rapport with the client and explain the procedure in detail so the can gain their client’s cooperation. They then let the patient change into a gown and position him properly. Then they put a conductive gel on the area that needs to be viewed. The conductive gel is simply a cold gel that allows better viewing; it causes no discomfort and feels ticklish on the skin. Then with a long metal rod called a transducer, the ultrasound technician gently presses that patient’s abdomen and images are generated through a small screen. The ultrasound technician is able to view the organs in real time so he is able to record pictures, measurements and calculations accurately on the screen.

The salary of an entry level ultrasound technician can be as little as $40,000 to as high as $60,000. The reason for such a wide difference lies in a number of factors to consider. In general, there are a lot of factors that can determine a sonographer’s salary. These include level of education, experience, competency, and the area or facility he is working for. Hospitals pay the most sonographers, but the sonographer runs the risk of being called late at night to perform emergency ultrasound procedures. Education plays an important role in salary determination as well. The higher your level of education achieved, the higher your salary might be. Bachelor’s degree holders earn much higher salaries than associate’s degree holders because it takes 4 years to complete that degree. The biggest advantage of high degree holders is that they may become administrators someday.

When looking for a school that offers a program for ultrasound technician, check whether it is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Allied Health Education Programs. Accreditation is important so students will be able to obtain a certification as a registered diagnostic medical sonographer from the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography.