Most people don't think twice when going to the Hospital or Emergency Room. They assume that people are there to take care of them. That part is true, there are people there to do that. The Big question is, are they properly trained. Many states in the U.S. do not require Xray techs, or Radiologic Technologists, to be licensed. That, in itself, does not mean that technologists at your hospital are not trained, or licensed. Most hospitals will require their Xray Technologists to be certified by a National Board, The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists. This means they have completed a 2 year program and passed their boards. Most technologists are also a member of a National Society, the American Society of Radiologic Technologists. This Society helps to pass laws regarding education of student radiographers, represents technologists on a national level in Washington, D.C.,etc. And then some states have a state society. This may all sound confusing to you..but it boils down to one simple question.."Are you a Registered Technologist?"
When you are introduced to the xray tech about to perform your examination you should check their name tag. Most all Hospital name badges will have the employees name followed by some initials, RT (R), CT, US, etc..The RT (R) means they are licensed in Radiology. IF you don't see those abbreviations after their name you should ask the person if they are registered. IF they say No, then personally I would ask for someone who is. If there is no one licensed there I would probably go to another facility if I had that option. Radiation can be very harmful if not administered properly. We as technologists undergo intensive training for 2 years and we take our job very seriously. Radiology is undoubtedly the number one tool in helping Doctors diagnose most diseases. Xrays that are of poor quality can often cause a missed diagnosis. It is vitally important that people be trained and licensed to perform these Diagnostic procedures. This can save an incorrect diagnosis, it can save a lot of radiation exposure from unwarranted repeats, and it can save alot of money.
The next time you or someone you know is about to undergo any xray examinations be sure to ask who is performing their test. It can make all the difference in the world to have that xray information.