Cardiovascular Technologist Programs in Louisiana
Echocardiography or cardiac ultrasound is an essential diagnostic and treatment tool for the cardiologist, and the Echo Tech plays a key role in producing the images and reports needed for treatment of heart patients. The ultrasound process is a noninvasive technique and therefore the diagnostic tool of choice to produce visual images and videos of the heart and vascular structures. The Echo Tech must be a conscientious and responsible person who maintains high standards in patient care, in performing the ultrasonic procedures, in producing accurate reports and in communicating with physicians and others in the work setting.
If biology and the functioning of the heart interests you, and if you have an analytic mind together with an aptitude for mechanical reasoning and dexterity, echocardiography may be a good choice of career for you. There are schools in Louisiana offering certificate, associate degree or bachelor’s degree programs in cardiovascular technology that you can examine to find one that fits your particular needs and interests. Contact the echo tech schools in Louisiana to get started.
Echo Tech/Cardiac Ultrasound Education in Louisiana
Echo tech programs in Louisiana schools are variously called Cardiovascular Technology, Cardiovascular Sonography, Diagnostic Medical Sonography or Diagnostic Ultrasound Technology. Certificate programs of about a year prepare students for entry level positions as Echo Technicians in hospital cardiac departments or medical centers. Completion of these programs qualify the students for taking the certification examinations given by the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers (ARDMS) or the Cardiovascular Credentialing International (CCI).
There is also a 16 month Diagnostic Medical Sonography Post-Associate Certificate program for advanced ultrasound study. This program has a highly selective admissions process to admit experienced health care professionals who show the most promise for advanced ultrasound work.
One technical institute has an arrangement with a state university which permits the student to apply the technical certificate courses toward an associate or bachelor’s degree in Health Studies.
There are two Bachelor of Science degree programs in state universities in Louisiana. One is a Cardiovascular Sonography program within the Department of Cardiopulmonary Science, and the other is a Health Sciences practice area of Cardiovascular Technology. Prerequisite courses in math and the sciences are specified. Students apply for and are accepted into the program for the last two years of college.
Typical Requirements for EKG Tech Programs in Louisiana
Because training for this profession requires individual supervision and placement in the limited number of clinical positions in affiliate hospitals, admissions into the program is highly selective. Selection will be based on more than the usual GPAs, letters of recommendation, personal statements, resumes, and personal interviews.
The admissions committee will be looking for evidences of the personal and physical qualities best suited for advancement in this profession. A convincing personal statement showing how your personality, experience, education, abilities and interests combine to make you a desirable candidate will help. Another qualifier is volunteer work you may have done in an ultrasound environment.
The curriculum includes such courses as patient assessment and patient care, pathophysiology, ultrasound physics and instrumentation, clinical echocardiography, cardiopulmonary pharmacology and medical ethics. Laboratory courses provide hands-on training, and the practicum gives the opportunity to apply what is learned at a clinical setting.
Salary and Job Outlook for Cardiac Ultrasound Techs in Louisiana
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that in 2013, the average yearly salary for Cardiovascular Technologists and Technicians in the nation was $53,990; for Louisiana, it was $40,810. The metropolitan areas providing salaries closest to the national average were Alexandria at $49,510 and New Orleans at $46,010.
Echo tech graduates who have passed the credentialing examinations have excellent prospects for employment. Besides the hospitals and physicians’ offices, there may be opportunities in clinics, public health facilities, laboratories and medical sonography equipment sales. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicted that employment of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers and Cardiovascular Technologists and Technicians would increase 39 percent by 2022, showing a much faster than average growth. With the millions of people now covered under the Affordable Care Act, it could be expected that medical services of all types will see a great increase nationwide.
If you are ready to take your place in healthcare as an EKG technician in Louisiana, contact the schools you see on our site to get program details.