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Career Profile: Radiologic Technologists and Technicians

Take x-rays and CAT scans or administer nonradioactive materials into patient's bloodstream for diagnostic or research purposes. Includes radiologic technologists and technicians who specialize in other scanning modalities.

Salary and Outlook

According to the US Department of Labor, there are 222,800 people employed as radiologic technologists and technicians in the United States. The median annual salary is $61,370. Entry level employees earn approximately $46,850 per year and senior employees earn approximately $94,880 per year.

Estimates do not include other potential benefits such as health insurance, overtime pay, or retirement benefits that may be offered by employers.

Job Duties

  • Transport patients to or from exam rooms.
  • Take thorough and accurate patient medical histories.
  • Make exposures necessary for the requested procedures, rejecting and repeating work that does not meet established standards.
  • Set up examination rooms, ensuring that all necessary equipment is ready.
  • Operate digital picture archiving communications systems.
  • Operate or oversee operation of radiologic or magnetic imaging equipment to produce images of the body for diagnostic purposes.
  • Position patient on examining table and set up and adjust equipment to obtain optimum view of specific body area as requested by physician.
  • Process exposed radiographs using film processors or computer generated methods.
  • Use radiation safety measures and protection devices to comply with government regulations and to ensure safety of patients and staff.
  • Position imaging equipment and adjust controls to set exposure time and distance, according to specification of examination.
  • Explain procedures and observe patients to ensure safety and comfort during scan.
  • Determine patients' x-ray needs by reading requests or instructions from physicians.
  • Key commands and data into computer to document and specify scan sequences, adjust transmitters and receivers, or photograph certain images.
  • Operate fluoroscope to aid physician to view and guide wire or catheter through blood vessels to area of interest.
  • Assign duties to radiologic staff to maintain patient flows and achieve production goals.
  • Monitor patients' conditions and reactions, reporting abnormal signs to physician.
  • Provide assistance to physicians or other technologists in the performance of more complex procedures.
  • Operate mobile x-ray equipment in operating room, emergency room, or at patient's bedside.
  • Record, process, and maintain patient data or treatment records and prepare reports.
  • Perform procedures, such as linear tomography, mammography, sonograms, joint and cyst aspirations, routine contrast studies, routine fluoroscopy, or examinations of the head, trunk, or extremities under supervision of physician.
  • Provide assistance in dressing or changing seriously ill, injured, or disabled patients.
  • Complete quality control activities, monitor equipment operation, and report malfunctioning equipment to supervisor.
  • Assist with on-the-job training of new employees or students or provide input to supervisors regarding training performance.
  • Prepare contrast material, radiopharmaceuticals, or anesthetic or antispasmodic drugs under the direction of a radiologist.
  • Maintain a current file of examination protocols.
  • Perform general administrative tasks, such as answering phones, scheduling patient appointments, or pulling and filing films.
  • Review and evaluate developed x-rays, video tape, or computer-generated information to determine if images are satisfactory for diagnostic purposes.

Career List

Job Outlook


Total Current Jobs:
222,800
Annual Openings:
13,800
Increase in Openings by 2031:
6%
Annual Salary Range:
$46,850 - $94,880
Education Requirements:
Associate's degree