A Look at the Ultrasound Technician Salary
How to Earn the High Ultrasound Technician Salary
The ultrasound technician salary depends mostly on the level of training the technician had accomplished and their experience in their field of work. An ultrasound technician or a professional sonographer is a medical worker that focuses on using high frequency sound waves to create images of the organs inside the human body. This works pretty much the same way that a bat uses echolocation or a submarine using sonar radar in the ocean. Most people associate ultrasound with getting images of an unborn baby and this is by far one of the most commercially known uses of this technology. An ultrasound technician is also responsible for getting the images inside the digestive organs or the heart to help surgeons get a clear image on what could be causing diseases or health complications. Surgeons need to get a clear picture of what they are working on so that they can perform the proper surgery. With such an important task it is no wonder that the ultrasound technician salary is pretty high.
To earn this kind of salary you will need to accomplish a course as an ultrasound technician or sonographer. There are several types of courses available from short term certificates to Associate’s Degree, Bachelor’s Degree, and a Master’s Degree as a Sonographer. You will be required to have a high school diploma or at least a GED equivalent to get into any of these courses. Since this is a medical career you may be required by your state or the school to have a clean criminal record for the past two to five years. A misdemeanor may be waived off with the right documents but someone with a recent felony may not qualify for the course and if they do they will have a hard time getting a job in a hospital or clinic. There is a certification given by the ARDMS but this is not mandatory in many states.
Detailed Look at the Ultrasound technician Salary Rates
Someone who has taken a certificate course or the Associate’s Degree will be able to nab an entry level job as a sonographer in a small clinic or as an assistant in a hospital. The entry level for this kind of sonographer sits at a good $14 to $18 per hour therefore the annual rate goes to about $35,000 to $52,000 per year. Not bad for a job considering you have only spent two years studying after you graduated high school. A mid-level sonographer, which is also the average type of sonographer all across the country, has a median hourly rate of $28 to $30 per hour therefore averaging to an annual salary of $63,000 to $65,000.
This does mean that $65,000 a year is the highest cap that you can earn as a sonographer. If you finish the Master’s Degree and if you pass the certificate exam given by the American Radiological and Diagnostic Medical Sonographer organization or ARDMS then you can see an increase in the average ultrasound technician salary to reach over $90,000 per year. This is because a technician with a Master’s Degree and the certification will be able to take a specialty in their field of choice. They can be an ultrasound technician specifically for a certain type of internal organ. You can become a special sonographer for gynecologists so that they can get clear images of unborn babies or you can opt to become a specialist that will only take internal images of the heart. This will help surgeons discover what needs to be operated on and how to work on it.
So how much can a sonographer earn? Considering that they only take a short term certificate or a two year Associate’s Degree they can still earn up to around $35,000 to $52,000 per year. Those with a higher level of education can reach $65,000 while those with an ARDMS certification and a Master’s Degree can earn all the way to $90,000 per year. This is one of the most lucrative medical careers that people can pursue these days and with a very high demand for medical workers every year there is always going to be room for more work. Unlike physical jobs that see a drop in demand and salary, the demand for sonographers and the ultrasound technician salary will only continue to rise.