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MRI Technician Training

Loveleena Rajeev
MRI technicians are medical professionals who perform MRI tests on patients. Since it is a highly demanding job, it needs specialized training. Read on to know more about MRI training programs.
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a highly advanced noninvasive technological medical testing equipment.
MRI uses a combination of radio frequency pulses, powerful magnetic field, and a computer to produce pictures of almost all body parts. Its images are sharper and more detailed than images produced by X-ray, ultrasound, or CAT scan.
MRI is used to detect tumors, blockages or enlargement of blood vessels, and cancerous growth or abnormalities. With constant growth in the health care sector, MRI technicians are needed, in almost every hospital and specialty diagnostic center. What qualifications are required for MRI technician training?

MRI Technician Training Program

Educational Requirements

If one aspires to be a MRI technician, good formal education is necessary. Subjects like chemistry, anatomy, physiology, physics, maths and microbiology should be studied in high school. After high school, one has to enroll in a MRI technician school to get a valid certification.

Choosing a Training Program

One can choose an online or classroom training program for MRI. Earlier only classroom programs were available, but now, many schools have started offering online training for this course. It is better to choose the mode of study one is comfortable with.
While choosing a school, check for its accredited validation and recognition by the government or medical body. Your degree will hold no value, if the college has no recognition. To verify, if the chosen training school is accredited, consult the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT).
JRCERT is the only agency recognized by the United States Department of Education for the accreditation of traditional and distance delivery educational programs in magnetic resonance, radiography, etc.
Make sure the program is backed up with well-qualified instructors. Qualified instructors with real-time experience are important as they can combine practicality with theory. Figure out if the program includes an internship.
Most good MRI technician schools have internship programs towards the end of the course. This internship period provides the students with hands-on experience essential for successful completion of the training.
Some training schools provide financial aid to students. Getting a seat in such an institution helps in completing the course without spending much from the pocket. It is also necessary to ascertain the availability of strong support network to help students complete the program successfully.

Highlights of MRI Training

The course duration is generally one year to eighteen months, with online programs completing a bit faster than classroom programs. If one wishes to pursue further specialization, more short-term programs are also available.
In the training program, one learns the basics of using imaging equipment, computers, and conducting MRI test. A lot of emphasis is laid on learning imaging procedures, radiographic positioning, radiology technology, medical terminology, human anatomy and physiology, patient safety, and all other aspects of clinical training.
As MRI test is used to diagnose diseases, technicians conducting and handing over diagnostic reports to patients need to be highly sensitive. Most training schools include a short capsule course on soft and people skills too.
The correct way of documenting and recording diagnosis is also taught. A complete study of safety procedures to protect self and others is also a part of the syllabus.
After completing coursework, one has to apply for certification from American Registry of Magnetic Resonance Imaging Technologists (ARMRIT). Certificate is granted after the candidate clears an exam comprising sections on clinical application and safety, patient care, and physics. With this certificate, one can legally work as an MRI technician.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment opportunities for MRI technicians are expected to increase by 13 percent from 2016 to 2026. Median salary of MRI technicians in the U.S. is $60,070 which can vary depending upon the location and experience.
There are many employment opportunities for them in medical facilities and hospitals all over the country. The mentioned MRI training information is generic. Every state may have its own specific requirements for certification.
So it is better to gather information from designated authorities before applying for any training program.