Ultrasound Technician Job Description | Duties & Responsibilities

Prospective ultrasound technicians should carefully read this job description to know the duties and responsibilities to expect.

The job description of an ultrasound technician usually features duties and responsibilities such as preparing an ultrasound room and equipment, maintaining ultrasound equipment, and reporting scan results.

To perform these duties effectively, they usually need to possess certain skills and attributes.

An ideal ultrasound technician should possess communication, interpersonal and problem-solving skills.

An ultrasound technician is also called a sonographer or a medical diagnostic sonographer.

Aside from an associate’s and/or bachelor’s degree, you must also obtain a license to practice in a particular state or country.

Keeping reading this job description if you want to know what sonographers do.

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Doctor doing ultrasound scan for pregnant woman

What does an Ultrasound Technician do?

Ultrasound technicians assist radiographers and other health care practitioners in diagnosing a patient’s illness.

They use equipment that takes images of internal organs with high-frequency sound waves.

They inform patients about the ultrasound procedure and what it entails.

Also, ultrasound technicians have the responsibility of assisting patients throughout the procedure.

They help them move to attain comfort during the procedure.

In addition, they ensure that patients are only exposed to a minimal level of high-frequency sound waves.

Exposure to too many high-level frequency sound waves could damage patients’ health.

It could even result in certain types of cancer.

Therefore sonographers must adhere to all professional codes and ethics to ensure the safety of patients.

Because of the sonographer’s special duties and skills, the United States labor department considers it a different job from radiology.

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Duties and Responsibilities of an Ultrasound Technician

Ultrasound technicians perform many activities, all aimed at a proper diagnosis.

Those with a keen understanding of their duties and responsibilities usually do better.

Therefore, I will advise you to pay keen attention to this section of this job description.

Here are some of the duties and responsibilities of an ultrasound technician:

1. Explain the Ultrasound Procedure to Patients

It is the responsibility of the ultrasound technician to properly explain the whole procedure to patients.

They tell them what to and not to expect and then answer any question the patient asks.

2. Consult with Medical Practitioners

Before the ultrasound procedure, an ultrasound technician must relate necessary concerns to the referring health care provider.

Also, whenever there is a need to adjust previous plans, the sonographer consults the referring doctor to obtain better results or implements the changes independently.

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3. Operate Ultrasound Equipment

The ultrasound technician is also responsible for operating high-frequency sound wave equipment to capture images of internal organs.

During this procedure, you must ensure that only the right frequency wave hits the patient.

Also, they schedule maintenance of these machines to ensure they are always in proper working conditions.

4. Assisting Patients during Ultrasound Procedures

During the ultrasound procedure, they assist patients.

Ensure they take a comfortable position that will promote a successful procedure.

5. Identifying and Recording the Unexpected or Predicted Outcome

after listening to a patient’s complaints and evaluating their medical history before the procedure, the technician makes predictions.

When the prediction fails, the sonographer needs to document it.

If necessary, in such a situation, the ultrasound technician also recommends further testing and diagnosis.

Other duties and responsibilities of an ultrasound technician usually featured in the job description include:

  • Adhering to all necessary professional codes and ethics.
  • Prepare an ultrasound worksheet that explains procedure findings to referring doctors.
  • Making sure that the probe is capturing the appropriate image rightly.
  • Preparing and maintaining the ultrasound room and equipment.
  • Interpreting image captured by the traducer.
  • Updating medical records of patients.

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What Qualifications do I need to become an Ultrasound Technician?

There are four routes to becoming an ultrasound technician; you can decide to take any.

These routed include the following:

1. Certification

You may decide to take a one-year certificate program.

But, such programs are only available for those with at least one year of experience in any healthcare occupation.

2. College Degree

Another route is to obtain an associate or bachelor’s degree in diagnostic medical sonography from an accredited school.

An associate degree in diagnostic medical sonography usually takes two years to complete.

Whereas a bachelor’s degree takes up to four years to successfully complete.

In the United States, diagnostic medical sonography programs are accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP).

3. Credentials

After graduating from a diagnostic medical sonography program, you can obtain a credential.

You must pass a national credentialing examination to become a certified medical sonographer.

Although this certification is not compulsory, most employers will not employ you without it.

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4. Licensing

In some states and countries, ultrasound technicians need a license to practice.

You are advised to determine the requirements to obtain a license in your state or country to get one.

What Skills does an Ultrasound Technician need?

Aside from the duties and responsibilities, as well as qualifications an ultrasound technician should do and have respectively. There are certain skills that are essential for ultrasound technicians to have.

These skills are also included in an ultrasound technician job description.

This is because they are very important in performing almost all their functions.

1. Good Sonography Knowledge

Having proper orientation of body anatomy and equipment used in ultrasound is advantageous to becoming an ultrasound technician.

You should also know well all duties and responsibilities you can perform in your country.

2. Interpersonal Skills

As a good ultrasound technician, you should be able to maintain a good relationship with patients and other health care practitioners.

You should also always be very kind and sensitive to patients’ feelings.

3. Communication Skill

Being able to communicate effectively both verbally and in writing is important.

This skill is necessary for record-keeping and when educating patients about ultrasound procedures.

Also, they should possess the good listening skill; they should be able to listen attentively to the needs and complaints of patients

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4. Organizational Skills

A good ultrasound technician must be well organized. You should be able to keep all instruments in their appropriate place.

Attention to detail is also very relevant.

How much do Ultrasound Technicians make?

On average, ultrasound technicians in the United States make up to $55,270 per year, about $26.57 per hour.

Their salary ranges from$28,680 per year to $90,760 per year, which is $13.79 per hour to $43.63 per hour, respectively.

These figures may differ depending on your location.

Some factors that determine the pay of an ultrasound technician:

  • Location: The economy of a country may have an impact on the salary of an ultrasound technician. Those in locations where the economy is poor may be paid less.
  • Employer: ultrasound technicians who work for bigger healthcare organizations are more likely to earn better.
  • Experience: less experienced ultrasound technicians are not paid as well as their more experienced colleagues.
  • Qualification: More qualified ultrasound technicians are usually paid better.

Where do Ultrasound Technicians Work?

Typically, ultrasound technicians work in healthcare organizations.

Some of the employers of a sonographer include:

  • Nursing homes
  • Hospitals
  • Public health sector
  • Pediatric hospitals
  •  clinics
  • Medical diagnostic laboratories

Vacancies are usually posted online or on radio, television stations, and newspapers.

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Ultrasound Technician’s work Environment and Schedule

Diagnostic medical sonographers usually work in hospitals, medical imaging centers, and physician’s offices.

Hospital workers may work at night, on weekends, and on holidays.

Most of the time, sonographers are usually on their feet.

Being an ultrasound technician is a full-time job; you may even work overnight if you work in a center that stays open for 24hrs.

Ultrasound Technician Job Outlook

In 10 years, job opportunities for ultrasound technicians are expected to increase by 23%, according to the United States Bureau of Labour Statistics.

This growth is expected to occur due to more people who will need accurate medical diagnoses and the aging population.

What tools do Ultrasound Technicians use?

A good ultrasound technician should be able to operate and make use of the following tools:

  • Transducer or probe
  • Printers
  • Monitors
  • Central processing units
  • Keyboard
  • Disk storage devices

What should I Include in my Ultrasound Technician Job Description?

When creating your resume, you should include information capable of convincing a recruiter or employer that you are suitable for the job.

Some of the information you should include in your ultrasound technician resume include:

  • Qualification
  • Years of experience
  • Place of experience
  • Hard skills
  • Soft skills

These skills should not only be highlighted in your resume, but also, during an interview, you are expected to refer to them.

This job description can be used as a guide for creating a professional ultrasound technician resume.

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Conclusion: Ultrasound Technician Job Description Guide

Those who love operating technological equipment and desire to work in the health sector will be good ultrasound technicians.

Organizations can also use this guide as a template for creating their ultrasound technician job description.

They are free to make necessary adjustments to suit their organization’s needs.

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