National Radiologic Technology Week: Importance of X-Ray Techs

November 5th through 11th is National Radiologic Technology Week! NRTW 2017 celebrates Rad Techs (RT) and X-Ray Techs (XT), paying homage to their vital contributions in medical imaging and radiation. X-Ray Techs play a crucial part in Diagnostic Healthcare as well as patient care and radiation safety. November 8th 2017 also marks the 122nd anniversary of the discovery of the X-ray by German physicist Wilhelm Röntgen in 1895.

At Modern Technology School, we’ve been lucky enough to train with, as well as work with both X-Ray Techs and future Rad Techs. NRTW also gives us the opportunity to recognize how important the field of radiologic sciences are, and how grateful we are to be in the unique position to offer exceptional training for X-Ray Techs who have several career options in the field of Radiology.

Modern Technology School has been training X-Ray Technicians since 1981 at our ACCSC accredited X-Ray school in Orange County. Let’s explore what X-Ray Techs do while at work, as well as what their training consists of. We’ll also take a look at how X-Ray Techs can further their careers in Radiology and progress to becoming a Rad Tech in California.

What do X-Ray Techs Do?

X-Ray Techs are also known as Limited X-Ray Machine Operators, XT’s and X-Ray Technicians in California. They have several job duties that make them unique in the clinical imaging setting. They are vital to a properly-run clinic and have many different options for where they can find work in California.

  • Prepare patients for procedures
  • Record patient medical history
  • Position patients and x-ray equipment in order to get a proper image
  • Protect the patient by shielding exposed areas from radiation
  • Operate digital x-ray equipment to take images/aid in diagnosis
  • Keep detailed patient records for physicians and clinical staff
  • Work closely alongside physicians

Difference Between Rad Techs and X-Ray Techs in California

The 6th annual International Day of Radiology (IDoR) is observed on Nov. 8, 2017. On this day, X-Ray Techs at our school as well as the Rad Techs on-staff pay tribute to the Radiology professionals who play an important role in patient care, both in the emergency room, hospital and at the clinical level. While Rad Techs in California have a slightly different job-scope than X-Ray Technicians, they are both equally important.

X-Ray Technicians usually work at the clinical-level, while RT’s usually work at larger hospitals. Rad Techs also work alongside physicians and patients in high-trauma situations, including those found in many emergency rooms throughout the country. X-Ray Techs on the other hand, usually find work in the following places in California:

  • Urgent Care Clinics
  • Imaging Facilities
  • Doctor’s Offices
  • Corporate Healthcare Clinics
  • Orthopedic Offices
  • Sports Medicine Clinics
  • Private Practice Clinics

There are other major differences in the role of a Radiologic Technologist and that of an X-Ray Technician. However, it’s also important to point out that the amount of time spent in training for the two roles differ as well. For instance, Rad Techs will usually have to take formal classes at community colleges and/or a private radiology college. The program usually takes a few years total, not including the pre-requisite courses. Of course, there’s also the dreaded 5-6 year wait for impacted JC radiology programs.

Visit this article to explore more differences between Rad Techs & X-Ray Techs in California.

Classes for X-Ray Techs at Modern Technology School

Over the last 36 years teaching X-Ray Techs in California we’ve learned a few things as well. For starters, we’ve taken our x-ray students’ time and needs in mind. We understand that not everyone has 5-6 years of time in order to sit on a waiting list to become an RT. We also wanted to make our x-ray program cost effective and accessible to as many people as possible. Lastly, we’ve worked hard to bring you only the best instructors, hands-on x-ray labs, as well as small class settings.

Our 12-month Orange County X-Ray Technician Program is top-rated in Southern California. Not only do we offer accelerated education, but the x-ray program is all-inclusive. This means that books and scrubs as well as all of your pre-requisite courses are built right into the cost of tuition. Furthermore, we recognize the need most clinics have for well-rounded X-Ray Technicians with Medical Assisting training. Because of this, we’ve incorporated cross-training all of our X-Ray Techs as Medical Assistants.

Not only does this set up a good foundation for patient care, but it makes you more desirable to clinical employers. It also further enhances your job skills and gives you more experience in professional patient care — something you’ll take with you throughout your entire Diagnostic Healthcare career! While other x-ray tech schools have long waits or nickel-and-dime you, we add more value for your tuition.

Clinical Internship for X-Ray Techs

Another value-added incentive for our X-Ray Tech Program is our included Clinical Internship. Over the years we’ve built long-lasting relationships with some of the best clinics in Southern California. This means that instead of our students having to go find clinical internship on their own, it’s provided through our program, at no additional cost! While some schools ask you to find your own clinical internship opportunities, we feel that’s a strong burden.

Instead, the last few months of your X-Ray Program will include interning at a local clinic. You’ll work directly with staff, patients, physicians as well as other working X-Ray Technicians. You’ll not only get a first-hand look at a day in the life of an X-Ray Technician, but you’ll also get your licensing requirements satisfied. Moreover, you can be sure that you’ll meet the number of images and hours required for your clinical internship.

Job Opportunities for X-Ray Techs

As mentioned above, X-Ray Techs work in a number of different clinical and imaging environments. But as an X-Ray Tech in California, you also have many choices for the type of job you select. For instance, if you’re a night-owl, you may find that working in a clinic that offers 24hr patient care is right for you. We recently spoke with our X-Ray Technician Program instructor and Radiation Safety Manager, Adam Cooper, XT. Adam attended Modern Technology School’s X-Ray Technician Program and now works with us full-time. He also has a strong background in medical assisting and understands the current job climate for XT’s. Adam is also responsible for ensuring that all the doctors/physicians at clinical locations are aware of the state requirements for clinical training.

“As an X-Ray Tech, you have a lot of choices with how you want to build your schedule. X-Ray Techs can choose to work graveyard, 2nd-shift, mornings — it’s very flexible here in California. There are a lot of options and different types of employment for X-Ray Technicians.  It really depends on what you like. It’s also nice to know that those options are out there, one to match each X-Ray Tech’s personality and needs.” —Adam Cooper, XT, X-Ray Instructor & Radiation Safety Officer

How X-Ray Techs can Further their Careers

There are many ways you can further you career as an X-Ray Technician. In fact, when it comes to Radiology Education, the world is your oyster. With so many recent and new advancements in radiology over just the last decade, we’re seeing many opportunities for X-Ray Techs to enhance their careers. From how digital x-ray continues to evolve, to the ever-changing need of clinical employers migrating from the East Coast to California… the opportunities are endless.

We believe that starting as an X-Ray Tech in California is one of the best stepping-stones for your career. Whether you want to stay at the XT level, or move on to become an RT, the choice is yours. We make it easy to jump into an accelerated x-ray program and get back out in the world. You’ll be helping patients, earning experience and making a living, with the option to return to school.

X-Ray Techs vs. Rad Techs in California: Pros & Cons

There’s a lot of talk as to whether it’s better to become an X-Ray Technician or a Rad Tech in California. While the choice is yours, we believe it benefits most students to start at the XT level. Getting licensed in 12 months and having the opportunity to earn a living is a big deal to most people. For us, it boils down to having the choice in the first place. You also have to ask yourself if you’re willing to compete with all the currently employed RT’s. While they haven’t built too many hospitals in the last decade, they sure are turning out a lot of clinics. This means it’s often easier for XT’s to find work, while Rad Techs fight over seniority at the hospital-level.

Another thing to consider is whether or not you’re ready for working with high-trauma. Most Rad Techs start their careers in the ER, so make sure you’re comfortable with blood and life-threatening issues. Finally, it’s important to remember that you can always return to a private radiology school for RT training. Starting as an X-Ray Tech and getting out there in 12mos allows you to see if you even enjoy radiology. You won’t spend 5-7 years on a waiting list and you’ll still have the opportunity to earn while deciding.

Modern Technology School: Positioning to Save Lives

Getting a strong foundation in X-Ray, with cross-training as a Medical Assistant + clinical internship in just 12 months? That used to be unheard of. Modern Technology School has spent the last 36+ years creating the best X-Ray Tech program in Orange County. Not only is our accelerated x-ray program all-inclusive, but you get to work with others who have the same goals. You’ll learn from a challenging and friendly faculty with over 150 years of experience between them. You’ll be able to answer questions and get your answers demonstrated for you, on real x-ray/radiology equipment. Spend hours training in hands-on labs, with just a few other selected students.

We’ve put together one of the finest Job Placement opportunities for X-Ray Tech grads. Our team offers in-person resume, interview and testing help 5-days a week. Modern Technology School offers Financial Aid to those that qualify and are approved for the Veterans/GI Bill. Our built-in Clinical Internship offers more hours, facilitated training and the opportunity to preview a day in the life of an X-Ray Tech. We also pay for your first CA State X-Ray Exam!

Our friendly Admissions Advisor is standing by and would love to answer your questions. While other X-Ray Tech Schools focus on placing warm bodies in classes, we’re dedicated to the student experience.

Call Modern Technology School at (714) 418-9100

Learn about our X-Ray Technician Program benefits today!

Our Admissions Advisor will get your questions answered on the spot!

We offer free tours of our ACCSC accredited school 5-days a week!

*For more information on National Radiologic Technology Week, please visit the NRTW page on the ASRT website. Also, remember to use hashtag #NRTW2017 and to follow us on social media!