In the ever-growing field of ultrasound (sonography), there is a plethora of options you can choose to advance your career. These jobs include specializing in the ultrasound field and working as a sales professional.
Here are three ways to get you started as an advanced ultrasound technologist and earn the salary you deserve.
Ultrasound Technologist Training: Education and Certification
The first option to advancing your ultrasound career is to become certified in your field. When earning your certification, make sure to pay attention to the following:
- Type of degree: Is the degree you are looking into an Associates (two years), Bachelor’s (four years), Master’s (additional two years), or Ph.D. (additional two years)?
- Accredited certification: Accreditation is important for getting hired, as the proper institutions will uphold the proper standards to which hospitals and clinics adhere. Look for accreditation through CAAHEP – the leading program in ultrasound technologist courses.
- ARRT Technologist – advanced professional training programs like those offered at AHEC
After completing your ultrasound training, you will need to prepare for and pass one of the sonography registry exams: the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS) exam, American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) sonography exam or one of the Cardiovascular Credentialing International (CCI) to become fully certified in your field. Hospitals and other accredited organizations want fully registered sonographers.
Specialization in Ultrasound Technology
While general study sonographers are the most prevalent, you can also choose to specialize in other ultrasound fields. Options for different fields include, but are not limited to:
- Advanced Cardiac Sonographer: Your main job is to perform cardiac sonograms that produce high quality, diagnostic images for physicians to review, as well as write up reports about the images they produce. There are different credentialing requirements depending on which exam you choose (i.e. ARDMS, CCI, ARRT)
- Vascular Sonographer: As a vascular sonographer, you will need to have at least six months of experience in sonography, as well as pass a certification exam. Your main job is to produce diagnostic images of patients’ vascular systems. There are different credentialing requirements depending on which exam you choose (i.e. ARDMS, CCI, ARRT)
- Women’s health – these sonographers specialize in Obstetrics, Gynecology and breast exams.
If you would like to move out of clinical ultrasound work, but still work in a related field, there are options for you, too.
- Ultrasound/Medical Equipment: Extensive background in sonography and ultrasound equipment usage is helpful in this field. As a representative, you will demonstrate how to use the equipment, as well as explain the benefits, to make sales to customers.
- Ultrasound Researcher: If you enjoy the science side of ultrasounds and sonography, then you might enjoy becoming an ultrasound researcher. Study the human body and help improve medical research as you embark on helping researchers in the field.
- Ultrasound/Sonographer Educator: To become an educator in this field, you will need to meet the requirements of the educational facility. Either a bachelor’s or master’s degree is generally required. Ultrasound educators can find jobs in both schools and medical facilities and teach new sonographers about proper equipment use, protocols and patient management.
Is Ultrasound Technologist Training in Houston, TX Right for You?
As with any job, there are pros and cons to working as an ultrasound technologist. The job requires you to love studying the human body, work in a high-traffic environment, and operate special equipment.
If you are a friendly person who has a passion for helping people in non-invasive ways, then advancing your career in this field may be perfect for you.
If you would like more information on cross training as an ultrasound technologist in Houston, then visit AHEC Online for more articles and resources to guide you in your career.