Radiology Assistant

Radiology Assistant


radiologist assistant Radiology Assistant
The radiology assistant is an advanced and well experienced radiology technician (radiologic technologist or x-ray tech) that works under the supervision of the radiologist and assist in providing great patient care. Radiology assistants are also known as radiologist assistants and they are the most paid among all medical imaging techs. As a matter of fact, the average salary of a radiology assistant can be as high as $90k with quite a few making well above $100k.

To become a radiology assistant, one must first become a radiology tech by completing a 2-4 year program at one of the many accredited radiology technician schools with emphasis on math, biophysics, radiobiology, anatomy, physiology. There will also be ample courses on the understanding and handling of the radiology equipment, medical imaging, and patient positioning.

Upon graduation from the radiology technician program, the x-ray technician interested in becoming a radiology assistant would have to complete close to 2000 clinical hours prior to joining the radiology assistant program where they learn about diseases and clinical settings. They then must pass the certification exam offered by AART (American Registry of Radiologic Technologists) to become RRA (Registered Radiologist Assistants) and start their radiology assistant rewarding career.

The radiologist assistant profession is a fairly new one and has been created out of necessity to address the significant shortage in diagnostic radiologists and the ever escalating costs of health care. Radiology assistants will perform patient assessment and management, and a number of radiological exams such as fluoroscopic and interventional ones. Examples of such procedures include barium enemas, upper GIs, and vascular procedures.

Radiology assistants cannot however interpret any diagnostic study nor convey any result to the referring physician. The official stance of the ACR (American College of Radiology) is that radiology reports for any study are to be exclusively created by radiologists and relayed by them to the medical doctor that ordered that particular exam. This policy is recognized both by the ACR and the ASRT (American Society of Radiologic Technologists).

There is significant job security for radiology assistants as demand is expected to grow way beyond supply in the next many years. This adds to the appeal for a career as a radiology assistant in addition to the interesting nature of the job, and the generous compensation.

As with every profession, the radiology assistant salary is dependent on the particular city and state and their cost of living. It also depends on a number of other factors such as experience, and type of practice. But overall, a starting radiologist assistant can expect to make more than $75k with compensation delving into the six figures after 5 year of experience.








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