Step by Step Guide on How To Be an MRI Technician

A job in the healthcare industry that is often overlooked is that of an MRI Technician. These highly-skilled individuals (also called MRI Techs) are vital to the success of a clinic or hospital in coming up with accurate diagnoses.
You can find MRI Techs in the Radiology Department of hospitals, but they are also being employed in diagnostic labs and in doctors' offices. They are the ones in charge of operating the Magnetic Resonance Imaging scanner, or MRI, and make sure the resolutions of the images produced are of the highest quality.

What an MRI Tech does
As discussed above, an MRI Tech is crucial in the operations of the Radiology division of a hospital. His primary task is to operate the MRI scanner. As technician, he makes sure that the machine does what it is supposed to do—produce high resolution images of target body parts for physicians to diagnose. With these hi-res images, a radiologist will be able to better diagnose a patient. The technician may also be called in once in a while to help the radiologist with some technical details of the diagnostic procedure.
With an MRI scanner costing hundreds of dollars, the technician also ensures that it is in tip-top shape at all times. To do this, he performs regular maintenance procedures on the machine. Often times, the technician will need the help of third-party service providers or the supplier’s service engineer.
Another important responsibility of the technician is to ensure the safety of the patient. Basically the MRI scanner is a machine that is run by a giant magnet. To ensure safety, the technician sees to it that all metallic objects are removed from the person of the patient.
The MRI tech also has duties that go beyond the technical aspects of the job. He helps relieve the stress a patient feels when undergoing an MRI procedure. An MRI scan can sometimes cause anxiety and claustrophobia to a patient because they have to lie inside an enclosed tube for more than half an hour. A competent MRI Tech will talk a patient through a procedure to make sure all fears and concerns are eased.

How to become an MRI Tech
If you’re strongly considering becoming an MRI tech, here are the steps to fulfill your dream:
  1. Get a degree in Radiologic Technology. Bachelor’s and Diploma degrees are offered by community colleges and universities. Another option is to find a hospital that offers an associate degree course in Rad Tech.
  2. Enroll in an MRI Technologist program. Good places to start looking for institutions that offer these training programs are the JRCERT website and the ARRT website.
  3. After completing the MRI Tech training program, find a hospital or diagnostic laboratory to do hands-on training. Typical internship programs for hospitals and laboratories run for 1000 hours.
  4. Get your certificate by passing the accreditation exam set by the ARMRIT (American Registry of MRI Technologist). This step is not a requisite, but will increase your chances of being hired.
  5. Work to obtain a license from the state where you will be practicing.
  6. Attend post-graduate courses and trainings. The ARRT requires all MRI Techs to accumulate at least 24 hours of continuing studies every two years. This is one of their requirements for certifications renewal.
Job Requirements

First and foremost, a MRI tech needs to have sound analytical skills. This skill is necessary when producing the MRI images. The technician also needs to give his analysis of the images to the radiologist doing the diagnosis. Another requirement is for the technicians to be physically fit. There’s a lot of heavy lifting involved in being an MRI tech—from equipment and machinery to patients. Lastly, a competent technician must have good people skills. They have to be able to help and support patients as they go through the scanning procedure.
An MRI Technician is a career in the healthcare industry that’s rewarding in a sense that it requires both technical prowess and emotional intelligence. For those considering being an MRI tech, it’s good to know that the annual median salary is competitive at $54,000. There’s also an expected 28% rise in the job outlook until 2020. This means, there are lots of jobs awaiting MRI Tech graduates in the years to come.
Do you think being an MRI technician is the right job for you?

Author Bio : Jo is Freelance Writer for 8 years now. She writes articles about Health & Fitness, Beauty Tips, Education, Business, Finance, Software, Technology, & Relationship.

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