Sonogram technicians are responsible for capturing images of patients’ internal body structures that help physicians diagnose a variety of health problems such as cancer, blood clots, and heart conditions.
What is a Sonogram Technician’s Salary?
This profession is in high demand because sonography is a low-risk, non-invasive (in most cases) diagnostic tool. Plus, the large population of baby boomers are continuing to age and require more medical care. The number of jobs is expected to rise 46 percent until 2022.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports the average median salary for sonogram technicians is $66,410. The state that has the highest salary is California with a yearly average of $89,870, which is much higher than the national mean wage of $68,930. Other top paying states for sonographers include Oregon, Washington, and Colorado.
If you work in Alabama, Arkansas, Mississippi, South Dakota, and West Virginia, you’ll be employed in a state that is in the lowest paying tier for this profession, with average median salaries ranging from $50,700 to $55,740.
Several factors are considered when determining salary: location, employer, level of education, and whether the sonogram technician works part-time or full-time.
Best States to Call Home
According to CNBC.com, the following states are among the top ten places to live in the United States:
Hawaii – With beautiful scenery, healthy residents, and a low crime rate, it is no wonder that Hawaii ranks number one. The median annual salary for sonogram technicians is $75,280.
Vermont – This is one of the healthiest states in the country and it has a very low crime rate. The yearly median wage for sonogram technicians is $71,280.
New Hampshire – This state has a great environment and a low crime rate. The average salary for sonogram technicians is $74,940.
Maine – This state not only has plenty of natural beauty, but it has the lowest crime rate in the nation. The median annual salary for sonogram technicians is $71,000.
Nebraska – The air quality is among the best in the country, and like the other states we have mentioned, the crime rate is low. The yearly median wage for sonogram technicians is $61,410.
To earn the highest salary, you’ll need to obtain a bachelor or master’s degree, however, all you need to enter this field is an Associate of Applied Science degree. You can find accredited programs at community colleges, universities, trade schools, teaching hospitals, and even the armed forces. Courses may include Medical Terminology, General Psychology, Introduction to Diagnostic Sonography, Ethics, Specialized Sonography Procedures, and Clinical Practicum. The clinical practicum is very important because it gives students valuable hands-on training in a real medical setting
In most states, certification is not required. Only sonogram technicians who work in a state that requires licensure need to sit for the Registered Diagnostic Medical Sonographer exam. However, it is in one’s best interest to earn the credential because not only can it increase earnings, but most employers won’t hire those without it.
What exactly do sonogram technicians do on a routine basis to earn their salary? Well, some duties depend on their specialty (such as breast sonography or vascular interventional sonography), but there are several that fall into a general category. They include:
- Taking a patient’s health history
- Answering questions a patient may have about the procedure
- Positioning the patient in order to obtain the best scan possible
- Taking measurements
- Analyzing data
- Performing routine maintenance on the equipment
- Giving the prescribing physician an oral or written explanation of the preliminary findings
- Calibrating the machine and sterilizing the equipment and patient table after each exam
If you would like to learn more about this rewarding healthcare career, please contact us. We can help you decide if this is the right profession for you.