If you are interested in becoming a radiographer and are curious if you have the right personality and motivation for it, there are some things you should know. Now is a good time to enter this field, as the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that job availability in this field will grow by 28 percent through the year 2020. Do you think you have what it takes to be successful in this field? A radiographer, or radiologic technologist, spends a great deal of time with his or her patients. Not only will you need the right education and skill set, and possibly a certification depending on the state in which you work, you will also need the right personality.
A successful radiographer is detail-oriented, follows instructions and orders carefully, and keeps a close eye on quality control, which includes everything from double checking radiation dosages to maintaining equipment. This individual is also able to stand for long stretches of time, sometimes wearing a heavy apron, and has adequate strength to help move and position patients for their imaging procedures.
Because these technologists work very closely with patients, an excellent radiographer must be patient and empathetic, but remain firm enough to produce quality diagnostic images. Patients are often in pain, under duress, and may have demanding family members present. Some patients need extra time or have more questions than others. The work may also be done in an emergency situation where every second counts, but precision must prevail nonetheless.
And finally, a career radiographer sets aside time for continuing education activities, since schooling can only take one so far. As the field of radiologic technology advances, the effort to keep up with the latest information in the field can become the key to a long, successful career. Attending seminars and workshops as well as reading current journals can help provide the knowledge needed to stay on top of your game and pass recertification exams.
Does this sound like you? If so, the first steps are finding the right program for your needs and committing the time required to complete your education and certification. If you would like to learn more about the career of radiography, including educational and certification requirements, visit the website for The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists.
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