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What is a Radiology Tech?
Radiographers, also known as Radiologic
Technologists, Diagnostic Radiographers, Medical Radiation
Technologists Radiographers are infrequently, and often
incorrectly, known as X-Ray Technicians in less developed
countries and sometimes inaccurately by the general public in
more developed countries, this title is controversial as
radiographers receive a higher level of training than that of a
technician and it does not reflect the clinical nature of the
profession. In countries which use the title radiologic
technologist they are often informally referred to as techs in
the clinical environment.
Radiographers perform imaging of the human body for diagnosis
and/or treatment of pathological or medical conditions.
Radiographers work in both public and private healthcare and can
be physically located in any setting where appropriate
diagnostic equipment is located, most frequently in hospitals.
Their practice varies country to country and can even vary
between hospitals in the same country.
In the United States, these professionals are known as
Radiologic Technologists. Formal training programs in
radiography range in length that leads to a certificate, an
associate or a bachelor's degree. The American Registry of
Radiologic Technologists (ARRT), the primary credentialing
organization for Radiologic Technologists in the United States,
requires that candidates for ARRT Certification Exams must have
an Associate degree at minimum as of January, 0, effectively
ending non-degree granting diploma programs.8 Accreditation is
primarily through The Joint Review Committee on Education in
Radiologic Technology (JRCERT), the only agency recognized by
the United States Department of Education and the Council for
Higher Education Accreditation to grant accreditation to both
traditional and online programs in Radiography, Radiation
Therapy, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, and Medical Dosimetry. An
online page where prospective students can check the
accreditation of programs is maintained by JRCERT.9
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Radiologic Technology students study anatomy and physiology, physics,
mathematics, radiopharmacology, pathology, biology, research, nursing, medical
imaging, diagnosis, radiologic instrumentation, emergency medical procedures,
medical imaging techniques, computer programming, patient care, medical ethics
and general chemistry. Schooling also includes significant amounts of documented
practicum supervised by Registered Technologists in various clinical settings
where the classroom theory is translated to practical knowledge and real world
experience. The change from Film to Digital imaging has changed training as film
quality assurance and quality control is largely obsolete. The role of computer
workstations to produce synthetic images for Radiologists has steadily increased
the need for computer skills as has electronic medical record software.
After primary training and licensure, continuing education is required to
maintain licensure and certification with the ARRT, who sets the accepted
national guidelines. The ARRT requires Units of accredited continuing education
every two years and the laws and the regulations of most states accept this
standard. Continuing formal education or the passing of an advanced practice
speciality exam may also be accepted for continuing education credit. The
American Society of Radiologic Technologists (ASRT),0 a professional association
for people in Medical Imaging and Therapy, offers members and others continuing
education materials in various media that meet the requirements of the ARRT for
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