Colorado Sonography Tech Careers and Degrees
The burgeoning health care field results in deficits in practitioners from nursing assistants to medical doctors. One of the fastest growing areas in health care is sonography. Medical sonographers supply a necessary diagnostic tool to doctors and nurses, a vital link in the treatment chain.
Receiving Your Sonogram Technician Training in Colorado
Diagnostic medical programs vary between colleges. Some schools will take applicants directly from high school, preferring those with a heavy accent on science and math studies. Other schools require experience in health care or even a bachelor’s degree in an unrelated field for admission to the program. All of the colleges, however, stress classroom instruction, lab work and hands-on training in their sonography programs.
If you decide to pursue a career in medical sonography in Colorado, you will need to look carefully at the colleges to decide which one meets your needs. Colleges offering programs in sonography are accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Allied Health Education Programs. Program length varies from 12 months to 21 months at Colorado schools, but the courses of study are uniform. That is because the aim of the training is to equip the student to take certification exams from the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonography. Areas included in coursework are obstetrics, gynecological, abdominal and superficial structure ultrasound. All schools utilize hospitals and clinics to give their students experience in working with patients. You may elect to pursue an Associate’s Degree in Applied Science or earn a Certificate of Completion. Either of these will qualify you to take the exams.
Sonography Technician Licensing in Colorado
Although there are no state requirements for licensing of sonographers in Colorado, the American Registry of Medical Sonography assures competency in those practicing in Colorado by its rigorous exams. There are two basic tests and you may choose either one, but, once you elect a field of practice, you may not change. The first test allows you to become a Registered Diagnostic Medical Sonographer. Areas covered are abdominal sonography, breast sonography, obstetric sonology, fetal echocardiography, neurosonology and gynecolological sonography. If you choose the second exam, you will be certified as a Registered Diagnostic Cardiac Sonographer. This area includes adult, fetal and pediatric echocardiography. Applicants who pass the exams will be issued a Certificate of Competency. Specializations can be added to credentials once you pass the initial exams.
Career Outlook for Sonogram Technicians in Colorado
According to Us Department of Labor statistics, employment of Diagnostic Medical Sonographers is expected to grow by 39% by 2022. This is largely due to the rising popularity of ultrasound technology over traditional radiology. Fifty-eight per cent of the jobs will be in hospitals.
Salary and advancement are dependent upon experience and specialty. Sonographers can take continuing education courses and add specialty certification to their credentials, even working with animals in veterinary clinics. Sonographers also work in urgent care venues and in-home visitation or mobile offices, which typically offer higher salaries. In addition, sonographer salaries in some states are higher; relocation is a possibility for advancement.
With an aging population, and with governmental healthcare programs emerging, the career outlook for Medical Diagnostic Sonographers is bright.