Rad tech job description

A radiology technologist, also known as a radiology technician or rad tech, is a skilled healthcare professional who specializes in operating imaging equipment to capture medical images of a patient’s internal structures. These images are crucial for diagnosis, treatment planning, and monitoring of various medical conditions. Radiology technicians work closely with radiologists and physicians specialized in interpreting medical images, to ensure accurate and high-quality images are obtained.

Rad tech job responsibilities

The responsibilities of a radiology technologist encompass several important tasks. They prepare patients for procedures, explaining the process and answering any questions to alleviate anxiety. Positioning patients correctly and safely is essential to obtain clear images. Radiology technicians also adjust and operate imaging equipment, such as X-ray machines, computed tomography (CT) scanners, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machines, and ultrasound equipment, according to the specific procedure requirements.

Increases in demand by the numbers

Projections by the Bureau of Labor Statistics predict that demand for radiology technologists will grow by 6% through 2031. Although this is the typical growth rate for professions across the economy from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the supply of professionals might not keep up with the demand in the market. 

In 2022, Radiology Business shared that 80% of healthcare providers claimed to be short-staffed when it comes to allied professionals. The job role with the most unfilled positions was rad tech. 

At Medely, we’ve seen a 17% increase year over year in the demand for rad techs in our healthcare talent marketplace. 

Why demand for rad tech increasing

Aging population 

Many cite the increasing aging population of the United States as the reason for the growth in demand for rad techs. According to urban.org, the percentage of adults in the United States over the age of 64 will grow from 16.3% in 2020 to 20.4% by 2040. As the American population continues to age, the need for rad techs in clinical and medical settings will increase. The elderly need more medical attention for both diagnostic and treatment screenings, and bone breaks and fractures are more common in adults over 65 years of age. 

Technological advancements

The field of medical imaging is rapidly evolving with advancements in imaging technology. Newer imaging modalities such as CT scans, MRI, and interventional radiology techniques are becoming more widely used, requiring skilled technicians to operate and interpret the results.

Diagnostic importance

Medical imaging has become an integral part of healthcare, playing a crucial role in diagnosing various medical conditions. Accurate and timely diagnosis is essential for effective treatment planning and patient outcomes. A report published by the University of Alabama at Birmingham states that “the amount of imaging is going up 5% per year.” Radiology technicians are needed to perform imaging procedures and assist radiologists in interpreting the images. 

Use Medely to leverage your experience

Rad techs can use Medely to find per diem shifts and assignment requests from healthcare facilities all across the country. Want to learn how you can use your experience to create more freedom, flexibility, and earn more cash? Click the link below.