Have you ever been in an MRI waiting room?
Did you see the worried faces of the patients sent for an MRI scan?
They see you as the person who knows their fate.
Their spirits need to be lifted.
No matter the results.
Your job will also be to listen and assure them about their health.
An MRI tech works with the radiologist team to scan the patient’s body parts to diagnose.
Working with the physicians to come up with a diagnosis is the icing on the cake.
Read on to find why you should choose a career as an MRI technologist in your country.
- Pros of Being an MRI Technologist
- Cons of Being an MRI Technologist
- Should You Become an MRI Technologist?
- Pros and Cons of Being an MRI Technologist Summary Table
Pros of Being an MRI Technologist
The estimated number of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) technologists in 2020 were 39,270.
If you are a tech lover and love handling machines, this one is for you.
If you love communicating directly and offering support to your patients, this is a great opportunity.
Being an MRI technologist comes with many perks, and we list some in this article.
Provides Job Security
There’s an expectation of a 9% increase in radiologic and MRI technologists’ overall employment between 2020 and 2030.
This means that the field still has more job opportunities.
It’s hard to lose a job when the available qualified people are not even enough.
At least when you are an MRI technologist, you know that wherever you’re working, your services are essential.
If you work in a private hospital, the hospital will fear losing you.
This is because getting a certified MRI technologist is not easy.
Keep up With Technology
A Magnetic Resonance Imaging machine uses high technology to generate images.
It uses magnetic fields, radio waves, and computers to detect any defects in body tissues.
There’s also advancement in computer technology to a 3D MRI.
The 3D scans are more precise and can show even the tiniest tumors in the body.
How would you feel working in a field where you experience such technology?
With this technology, you get to understand human anatomy better.
Enjoy a Good Salary
If you’re wondering how much an MRI technologist earns per year, here is the answer.
The average pay for an MRI technologist is $74,690 in 2020 and $61,900 for radiologic technologists.
With an hourly rate of $30 for low earners in the field, this is not bad for starters.
An imaging technologist gets better pay compared to a radiologic technologist.
There’s a huge difference of $12,790 per year.
Having a job that pays this kind of money can give you a secure future and plan for yourself.
Specialize in One Area
Being an MRI technologist means specializing in magnetic resonance scanners to generate images.
The most significant task here is translating the results and coming up with the diagnosis.
Doing this daily will reduce your workload, enabling you to concentrate on your patients.
Also, specializing in one field will give you more experience since you’re working on related health issues daily.
Opportunity to Participate in Patient’s Treatment Plan
What feels better than diagnosing and coming up with a treatment plan that works for a patient?
You can point out a few suggestions by working closely with the physician.
And since working in the same field will give you experience, you can pinpoint a diagnosis quickly.
Also, assuring a patient of adverse outcomes plays a significant role in healing.
First, get certified by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) or the American Registry of Magnetic Resonance Imaging Technologists (ARMRIT).
This way, you can work anywhere in the United States.
With this MRI specialization, you can work in government hospitals, private practices, diagnostic imaging centers, universities, and MRI mobile units.
This is an excellent opportunity to visit various medical facilities until you find one where you can maximize your potential.
Improve Your Overall Skills
Are you a social person? Do you have interpersonal skills?
As an MRI technologist, you interact with different kinds of people.
Your patients come from all walks of life, and you should know how to handle them.
This means being able to create a relaxing environment for anxious patients.
Also, be able to calm and reassure them.
Having a friendly environment gives you a composed patient in return.
This will also help you get the perfect image since the patient is not moving around in the MRI machine.
In a nutshell, working as an MRI tech will boost your technical, leadership, communication, critical thinking, and even mathematical skills.
Cons of Being an MRI Technologist
Now that you understand the perks of becoming an MRI technologist let’s look at the drawbacks.
It’s Physically Demanding
Imagine spending most of your day standing, lifting, moving up and down the facility.
You move from room to room, office to office, making the patient comfortable, receiving and making calls related to patients, and many other duties related to your job.
Some patients are in pain, unconscious, and close attention – so you don’t go any further from them, and it’s your job to make sure they’re comfortable when doing the scan.
Being an MRI technologist is physically draining, and by the end of your shift, you’ll only be looking forward to the comfort of your bed.
To be on the safe side, most professionals wear suitable attire and shoes that help reduce the strain of standing and walking for extended periods.
Can Be Very Stressful
Working in any health department can be very stressful.
This is because you are meeting different people with unique health issues.
You may also be working with stressed-out colleagues, making the situation worse.
Kids’ situations can be very stressful, especially if they are in pain.
Imagine having to deal with a kid who’s without a mother or guardian in the room.
You’ll have to play the role of doctor and parent to keep them calm.
Stressful situations can also arise if you work in a dynamic environment where things change within minutes.
You may find yourself working endlessly without resting.
This kind of environment needs one to be very active and flexible to respond to the changes.
You Must Be Sociable
It can be tough to be an MRI technologist if you don’t love socializing.
When doing the scans, you will meet different people, especially children and the elderly.
The most challenging group to deal with is the children.
Kids need to connect with you to feel comfortable and stay still in the machine.
You’ll also meet claustrophobic patients who need to be reassured that there’s nothing to fear or worry about.
Don’t forget the grumpy patients.
They are constantly irritated, even when you take long to answer their question.
As an MRI technologist, you have a job interacting with all these kinds of people, and you have to be very effective in it.
That’s where social skills come in.
Be Keen on Patient Information
One should not enter the Magnetic Resonance Imagining room with metal or electronic devices.
The MRI unit uses a magnetic field which can damage any electronics.
Devices such as pacemakers, aneurysm clips, or hearing aids can malfunction due to the magnet, exposing the patient to other dangers.
If you’re dealing with stubborn patients, they may not give you accurate information.
This becomes your duty to go through the patient’s information.
Accurately confirm if they use any devices that can interfere with the MRI unit and advise them on the steps to take.
Sometimes, you may have to explain to them why you need such information to enhance trust.
Long Working Hours
You may find yourself working more hours.
If you work in a medium-sized hospital open 24 hours a day, you may even be expected to be on-call.
The hospital may get a patient who needs an MRI immediately, and you may have to go back to perform the procedure even after you’ve left for home.
Also, if you secure employment in a large hospital, chances are you will work in shifts.
Sometimes, emergencies happen that cause you to stay in the hospital even if your shift is over.
This may affect your morale and productivity.
If you’re not prepared, you may be tempted to pursue another career.
This eventually affects your health.
Risk of Getting Infections
Healthcare workers can easily catch infections from their patients.
This especially happens if they forget to take the necessary precautions to protect themselves.
For example, you might forget to put on your protective gear during an emergency or when busy.
This makes you prone to infections if the patient has infectious diseases.
Some infections can leave you hospitalized, and others have a risk of death.
Sanitizing yourself and your place of work after handling a patient can help reduce the spread of diseases.
Should Be Creative and Adaptive
This seems simple and direct, but being creative in some life or death situations can be tricky.
Patients come in with different issues, and you need to be creative to handle each case uniquely.
Critical thinking can open new doors to the diagnosis and help you catch issues that would routinely be missed.
Also, as an MRI technologist, you’ll need to adapt to different patient needs to help you create a bond between you and your patients.
For example, some patients want to be alone in the MRI room, while others may prefer having a family member.
Being flexible with your patient will boost their ability to cooperate and enhance your chances of a successful procedure.
Should You Become an MRI Technologist?
Yes, MRI technologists are essential in today’s world, and it’s a lucrative profession.
Solving health problems for patients is an excellent win for every person in the health field.
MRI technologists are part of the diagnostic process and give important insights into treatment plans.
As an MRI technologist, your job will not only be imaging people’s vitals but also giving hope to your worried patients.
You’ll enjoy many perks associated with interacting directly with patients.
You’ll also have a chance to grow career-wise and earn better pay as you climb the success radar.
All jobs have risks, and many jobs require sacrificing your time to be successful.
But, for this profession, dedication and passion will propel you to the heights of career success.
Pros and Cons of Being an MRI Technologist Summary Table
|Pros of Being an MRI Technologist||Cons of Being an MRI Technologist|
|Provides Job Security||It's Physically Demanding|
|Keep up With Technology||Can Be Very Stressful|
|Enjoy a Good Salary||You Must Be Sociable|
|Specialize in One Area||Be Keen on Patient Information|
|Opportunity to Participate in Patient's Treatment Plan||Long Working Hours|
|Work Anywhere||Risk of Getting Infections|
|Improve Your Overall Skills||Should Be Creative and Adaptive|