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Radiology technicians and technologists are responsible for performing X-rays and other imaging tasks to help diagnose health problems in their patients. A radiology tech must be certified to use this type of equipment. Most U.S. states require radiology techs to be licensed as well. However, there's more to providing good radiologic imaging care than just skill with the equipment. Radiology techs also need certain personal qualities.
According to "RT Image," an online magazine for radiology professionals, compassion is the most important factor. Techs should have an ability to relate to the patient and adjust the care they provide to the patient's situation. "RT Image" suggests that radiology techs treat their patients as though they were members of their own families.
Spokane Community College notes that a radiology tech should have good organizational skills and be responsible and dependable. Those interested in working in radiology need to be able to work professionally with others, but also should be able to function independently. They have to maintain professional conduct even after long, tiring shifts.
Radiology techs need to be able to communicate freely with other techs in the same department, with radiologists, with referring doctors and with their patients. A tech may be called upon to discuss the imaging process with patients and help them understand how the diagnostic techniques work. Radiology techs should be willing and capable of sharing knowledge whenever needed.
People working in the radiology field must also be adaptable. The imaging field changes regularly as new techniques and technology require different procedures. Technologists must be flexible, open to change and willing to learn the latest news in their field. Radiology techs must also be capable of adapting to different patient situations. Each patient must be positioned differently, depending on his particular physical problem and emotional comfort level. Techs should be good listeners and responsive to patient feedback.
G.D. Palmer is a freelance writer and illustrator living in Milwaukee, Wis. She has been producing print and Web content for various organizations since 1998 and has been freelancing full-time since 2007. Palmer holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in writing and studio art from Beloit College in Beloit, Wis.
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