EKG technicians are noninvasive technicians specialized in electrocardiography. Noninvasive here means “not involved in surgery”. Such specialized technicians are also known as electrocardiograph technicians or cardiographic technicians.
A certified EKG technician is authorized to operate machines made to record electromotive variations in the heart muscle, such tests which provide critical data for the proper diagnosis of heart problems or complications. These procedures include working with Holter monitoring and stress testing. The outcome of the data is also required to be edited and delivered by the EKG technician as final test results to the physicians or doctors for analysis. EKG technicians also handle and schedule appointments, transcribe and interpret the physician’s statements.
BENEFITS OF EKG TECHNICIANS: Salary ranges and job outlook
EKG technicians usually work in hospitals on a 40 work-hour week. The average annual salary of EKG technicians may range from about $23,348 to $35,036. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) says that cardiovascular technology and technician jobs are expected to grow at 24% throughout 2018, which presumably focuses a bright future and demand for this career. The need for such technicians will only rise, as the aging population tends to be more vulnerable to heart problems.
This way, it can be a great job at entry-level into the field of health care having many potential opportunities for advancement.
As EKG technicians are usually employed by hospitals, they hardly ever pay for their own retirement or health benefits.
EKG TECHNICIAN CERTIFICATION (CET): How to become an EKG Technician
- The American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS) offers certification exams for electrocardiography.
- There are 29 one-year certificate programs in the US that EKG technicians can attend. These are certified by Joint Review Committee on Education in Cardiovascular Technology.
- The Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Professionals (CAAHEP) conducts degree programs.
In order to get EKG technician certification, graduation from an accredited program is usually required. Coursework covers medical terminologies, noninvasive cardiovascular monitoring and professional ethics. Although certification is voluntary, it always benefits to increase the candidate’s competitive edge in the job market.
Additionally, there is no nationally standard exam, and most associate or training programs will offer a certification exam upon completion.
Many EKG technicians begin as nursing assistants or health aides, along with pursuance for an associate degree in cardiovascular technology. An employed EKG technician will usually have at least two years of college education, with associate’s degree in medical assistance or healthcare. Credentialing/licensing upon graduation is optional.