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Oswego Career Ladders - Radiographer

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Radiographer

Industry: Healthcare
Area: Radiology

Radiologic technologists, also referred to as radiographers, produce x ray films of parts of the human body for use in diagnosing medical problems. They prepare patients for radiologic examinations by explaining the procedure, and positioning patients so that the parts of the body can be appropriately radiographed.Experienced radiographers may perform more complex imaging procedures. For fluoroscopic exams, radiographers prepare a solution of contrast medium for the patient to drink, allowing the radiologist to see the soft tissues in the body. Some radiographers, called CT technologists, operate computerized tomography scanners to produce cross-sectional images of patients. Others operate machines using strong magnets and radio waves rather than radiation to create an image and are called magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technologists.

Work Settings

More than half of all radiography jobs are in hospitals. Others are in physicians offices and clinics, including diagnostic imaging centers. Although hospitals will remain the primary employer of radiologic technologists, a greater number of new jobs will be found in offices and clinics of physicians, including diagnostic imaging centers.

Education

Entry level education for radiographers is usually two years in length. There are two-year certificate programs, two-year associate degree programs, and two-year upper division baccalaureate degree programs. Graduates of degree programs can also go on to earn a baccalaureate degree in MRI or CT. A bachelors degree is required for teaching positions, and highly desirable for those wanting to move into administration.

Job Outlook

Employment of radiologic technologists and technicians is expected togrow faster than the averagef or all occupations through 2014.

Salary

Median annual earnings of radiologic technologists and technicians were $43,350 in May 2004.

Work Schedule

Most work a 40-hour week; they may have evening and weekend hours, or times when they are on call

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