CT Technologist Career Guide

Career Overview

Technologists are the experts who make use of computerized integrated technology to provide services to various fields. One such area is CT or CAT, known as computerized axial tomography. CT technologists gain expertise by working in different sectors because there is a great demand for customized employment services in almost every field. Individuals who are capable at handling technical work might excel in this field only if they are fully trained to work in a professional environment.

CT technologists scan images of internal organs or tissues of patients. This helps in a more accurate diagnosis of various medical problems. The scanning procedure would approximately take around of 15 to 45 minutes in the event of an emergency visit or through scheduled appointment. Different types of scans include ultrasound techniques and examinations, gynecological, retroperitoneal and abdominal scans. These trained professionals work in the health care facilities, general, medical and surgical hospitals, offices of physicians and medical and diagnostic laboratories.

Job Duties

CT scan equipment provides radiations to scan body parts for the purpose of diagnosis and treatment. Physicians and radiologists are assisted by these technologists through interventional CT procedures including IVs and injecting contrast in order to diagnose a disease or illness and thus prescribe a suitable cure for it. Furthermore, they mentally prepare patients before the scan by decreasing patients’ anxiety, adjust the required equipment by positioning it properly on the patient to get accurate images and eventually assess CT scans for technical quality. Hazardous radiations emit from CT scan machines and therefore; safety instructions should be strictly followed.

Due to the safety measures, CT technologists have to wear gloves and aprons. Other duties include keeping record of patients, and operating and loading power injections for contrast media administration. An estimate from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that the number of people employed as radiologic technologists and technicians were 220,540 in May 2011.

Salary

The average pay estimated by the Bureau of Labor Statistics was $56,760 per year for radiologic technologists and technicians, in May 2011. The scientific research and development services paid the highest salary up to $66,120 per year.

Education Requirements

Most states require professionals in this field to be licensed before the actual practice of work. The minimum requirement set to be in this area is an associate’s degree in healthcare. It is a two year program, combining both the study of courses and clinical practice. Bachelor’s program, which lasts for four years, is also offered in radiologic technology to students who want a promising career in this area. The courses taught in this program are radiation protection, principles of imaging, physiology and anatomy.

After education, certification would be presented to work as a CAT technologist.  The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists offers CT certification and registration for the recognition of qualified individuals to work as CT technologists or radiologists.

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