Radiologic Technologist Jobs

Training and Education Jobs and Salaries

Radiologic technologists hold about 200,000. More than 60 percent of all jobs are in hospitals while most other jobs are in offices of physicians; medical and diagnostic laboratories, including diagnostic imaging centers; and outpatient care centers. Employment of radiologic technologists and radiologic technicians is projected to grow faster than average, and job opportunities are expected to be favorable.

Employment of radiologic technologists is expected to increase by about 15 percent from 2006 to 2016, faster than the average for all occupations. As the population grows and ages, there will be an increasing demand for diagnostic imaging. Although health care providers are enthusiastic about the clinical benefits of new technologies, the extent to which they are adopted depends largely on cost and reimbursement considerations. As technology advances many imaging modalities are becoming less expensive and their adoption is becoming more widespread.

For example, digital imaging technology can improve the quality of the images and the efficiency of the procedure, but it remains slightly more expensive than analog imaging, a procedure during which the image is put directly on film. Despite this, digital imaging is becoming more widespread in many imaging facilities because of the advantages it provides over analog.

Although hospitals will remain the principal employer of radiologic technologists, a number of new jobs will be found in offices of physicians and diagnostic imaging centers. Health facilities such as these are expected to grow through 2016, because of the shift toward outpatient care, encouraged by third-party payers and made possible by technological advances that permit more procedures to be performed outside the hospital.

In addition to job growth, job openings also will arise from the need to replace technologists who leave the occupation. Radiologic technologists are willing to relocate and who also are experienced in more than one diagnostic imaging procedure such as CT, MR, and mammography, will have the best employment opportunities as employers seek to control costs by using multi-credentialed employees.

CT is becoming a frontline diagnosis tool. Instead of taking x rays to decide whether a CT is needed, as was the practice before, it is often the first choice for imaging because of its accuracy. MR also is increasing in frequency of use. Technologists with credentialing in either of these specialties will be very marketable to employers.

Median annual earnings of radiologic technologists are around $48,000. The middle 50 percent earn between $40,000 and $58,000. The lowest ten percent earn less than $33,000, and the highest ten percent earn more than $69,000.

Median annual earnings in the industries employing the largest numbers of radiologic technologists are as follows: jobs in medical and diagnostic laboratories pay around $51,000, jobs in general medical and surgical hospitals pay about $49,000 and radiologic technologists employed in offices of physicians make around $45,500. Radiologic technologists operate sophisticated equipment to help physicians, dentists, and other health practitioners diagnose and treat patients. Workers in related occupations include cardiovascular technologists and technicians, clinical laboratory technologists and technicians, diagnostic medical sonographers, nuclear medicine technologists, radiation therapists, and respiratory therapists.