How Much Do Radiology Technicians Make?

Radiologist job descriptionRadiologic Technicians together with MRI Technicians help to identify and diagnose a number of illnesses and injuries through the use of equipment such as diagnostic imaging exams and magnetic resonance imagery scanners.

They aid physicians in diagnosing the problems of patients that can’t be diagnosed with regular lab tests.

Radiology Technicians  and MRI Technicians usually work in hospitals, but can also work in private clinics and medical laboratories.

They assist patients who are confined in the hospital, as well as operate equipment for outpatient services.

They work full time, but since they are also needed in emergency situations, they can work overnight, over weekends and holidays, and be available on call.

Radiology Technician Salary

How much do radiology technicians make?

radiologist salaryThe upper 10% earns an annual average of $99,180, while the lower 10% earns an average of $50,220.

A radiology technician starting salary depends on a variety of factors which include state of employment, size of institution, as well as hours worked.

Top 5 Paying States

FlagStateEmployment per 1000 JobsHourly mean wageAnnual mean wage
California FlagCalifornia 1.02$35.36$73,550
Massachusetts FlagMassachusetts 1.41$33.66$70,010
Alaska FlagAlaska1.38$33.11$68,870
Hawaii FlagHawaii 1.11$32.78$68,190
Washington FlagWashington
1.37
$32.69
$68,000

Top Paying Industries

IndustryPercent of industry employmentHourly mean wageAnnual mean wage
Commercial – Industrial Machinery and Equipment Rental – Leasing 0.04$34.86$72,500
Colleges – Universities – Professional Schools 0.05$31.69$65,920
Nursing Care Facilities $31.13$64,750
Specialty Hospitals 0.96$30.60$63,650
Scientific Research – Development Services0.02$30.07$62,540

Radiology Technician Job Description

what does a radiolologist doWhat do Radiology Technicians do? A Radiology Technician performs diagnostic duties such as operating X-rays and other diagnostic imaging exams, while an MRI Technologist operates magnetic resonance imaging scanners to produce images needed for diagnosis.

Both occupations operate equipment that is needed to find specific ailments and injuries that physical and lab tests can’t detect. Among the machines radiologists operate are X-rays, computer tomography (CT) imaging, and other medical equipment.

A radiology technician can also specialize in one type of machine or field. Some focus on X-rays while others focus on mammography. Mammography is a low-dose X-ray system that produces images of the breast and is used to detect breast cancer. Other radiologists are also certified in multiple specialties, allowing them to work in many different areas in medical care. 

The duties and responsibilities of a radiologist or MRI technician include:

  • Preparing patients for procedures, which include getting information on a patient’s medical history and answering questions about the procedure;
  • Following the orders of physicians in terms of what part/s of the body to be scanned;
  • Maintaining and caring for the imaging equipment being used;
  • Positioning the patient properly on the equipment, as well as helping them turn when they cannot do it by themselves, in cases of handicapped patients;
  • Operating the machines;
  • Protecting the patient by covering up areas of the body that don’t need to be scanned;
  • Working with physicians in the evaluation of the produced images;
  • Document results.

Some radiology technicians also prepare a mixture that patients need to drink, where it makes it possible for scanning equipment to view soft tissues. MRI technologists can also inject patients with contrast dyes to allow images to show up on the scanning machines.

There is a total of 199,200 radiology technicians working in the United States, and a total of 30,100 MRI technicians.

Most of the radiology technicians in the industry work in healthcare facilities, which means they are at a greater risk for exposure to infectious diseases compared to other occupations. They also have to stand for long periods of time when they need to operate the machines, as well as to help in lifting and turning patients who may be disabled.

The industry that employ the most radiology technicians is general medical and surgical hospitals, where 59% of all radiology technicians are employed. 22% of the total number of radiology technicians are employed in offices of physicians, while 7% work in medical and diagnostic laboratories. 4% of radiologists work in outpatient care services. 

Radiation hazards are something that radiology technicians are constantly exposed to. They usually wear badges that measure radiation levels in their work space. Hazards are minimized in their line of work through the use of protective lead aprons, gloves, shielding devices, and other instruments that detect exposure to radiation.

Radiology Technicians Job Outlook

The projected increase in radiology technicians’ jobs is 12% for the years 2016 to 2026, which is faster than the average in the US. The projected number of jobs to be created within these years are 25,300.

The projected increase in MRI technologists’ jobs is 14%, which is also faster than average occupations.

As the general population is aging, a general increase in the demand for radiology technicians and MRI technicians is also seen. Injuries and fractures caused by osteoporosis are also seen to increase, which will require more radiology technicians to operate scanning machines.

Developments in federal health legislation will also make it possible for individuals to have more access to health insurance, increasing the demand for medical care.

More and more outpatient services are also seen to increase, as it will be encouraged as a cost saving measure as opposed to being confined at a hospital for medical care.

Radiology Technician Salary by State

FlagStateEmployment per 1000 JobsHourly mean wageAnnual mean wage
Alabama FlagAlabama1.797$22.08$45,930
Alaska FlagAlaska1.382$33.11$68,870
Arizona FlagArizona1.322$29.31$60,960
Arkansas FlagArkansas1.572$22.32$46,410
California FlagCalifornia1.025$35.36$73,550
Colorado flagColorado1.238$29.06$60,450
Connecticut FlagConnecticut1.343$30.74$63,940
Delaware flagDelaware1.406$28.31$58,890
Florida FlagFlorida1.677$24.40$50,760
Georgia FlagGeorgia1.261$24.81$51,590
Hawaii FlagHawaii1.106$32.78$68,190
Idaho FlagIdaho1.239$24.96$51,920
Illinois FlagIllinois1.229$28.62$59,520
Indiana FlagIndiana1.481$25.90$53,870
Iowa FlagIowa1.487$23.36$48,590
Kansas FlagKansas1.5$23.67$49,240
Kentucky FlagKentucky2.122$24.21$50,370
Louisiana FlagLouisiana1.551$23.06$47,970
Maine FlagMaine1.682$27.12$56,420
Maryland FlagMaryland1.6$30.25$62,920
Massachusetts FlagMassachusetts1.408$33.66$70,010
Michigan FlagMichigan1.617$25.25$52,530
Minnesota FlagMinnesota1.431$30.17$62,760
Mississippi FlagMississippi1.72$22.59$46,980
Missouri FlagMissouri1.441$24.67$51,310
Montana FlagMontana1.693$25.66$53,380
Nebraska FlagNebraska1.719$24.19$50,320
Nevada FlagNevada1.164$31.07$64,610
New Hampshire FlagNew Hampshire1.193$29.80$61,970
New Jersey FlagNew Jersey1.345$31.44$65,400
New Mexico FlagNew Mexico1.481$27.74$57,700
New York FlagNew York1.497$31.87$66,280
North Carolina FlagNorth Carolina1.682$26.22$54,540
North Dakota FlagNorth Dakota1.14$23.05$47,950
Ohio FlagOhio1.693$25.35$52,730
Oklahoma FlagOklahoma1.395$26.55$55,210
Oregon FlagOregon1.16$31.58$65,690
Pennsylvania FlagPennsylvania1.726$25.98$54,040
Rhode Island FlagRhode Island1.503$31.89$66,330
South Carolina FlagSouth Carolina1.683$23.50$48,870
South Dakota FlagSouth Dakota2.401$22.25$46,280
Tennessee FlagTennessee1.883$23.68$49,250
Texas FlagTexas1.222$26.08$54,250
Utah FlagUtah1.11$25.72$53,500
Vermont FlagVermont1.279$27.83$57,890
Virginia FlagVirginia1.387$27.56$57,330
Washington FlagWashington1.373$32.69$68,000
West Virginia FlagWest Virginia2.2$22.06$45,880
Wisconsin FlagWisconsin1.591$26.10$54,290
Wyomin FlagWyoming1.25$24.99$51,970

Top paying metropolitan areas

AreaEmployment per 1000 jobsHourly mean wageAnnual mean wage
San Jose/Sunnyvale/Santa Clara – CA 0.69$44.43$92,410
Vallejo/Fairfield – CA1.37$43.06$89,560
San Francisco/San Mateo/Redwood City – CA, Metropolitan Division 0.92$43.05$89,530
Oakland/Fremont/Hayward – CA, Metropolitan Division 1.24$40.88$85,040
Sacramento / Arden / Arcade / Roseville – CA 0.83$39.77$82,720

Top paying non-metropolitan areas

AreaEmployment per 1000 jobsHourly mean wageAnnual mean wage
Northeastern Oklahoma – nonmetropolitan area 2.13$44.98$93,560
Northern Mountains – Region of California, nonmetropolitan area1.54$37.95$78,930
Western Central Nevada – nonmetropolitan area$34.99$72,780
Railbelt – Southwest Alaska – nonmetropolitan area 0.88$34.16$71,050
North Coast – Region of California – nonmetropolitan area 1.82$34.08$70,880

Radiology Technician Career Video

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Noel Griffith, Ph.D.
Noel Griffith is a Doctor of Philosophy with a strong interest in educational research. He has been an editor-in-chief of CareersWiki.com since 2014. Noel is an avid reader (non-fiction), enjoys good food, live theatre, and helping others make wiser career decisions.

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