If you’re thinking of getting a radiologic education, you may be wondering, “Radiology-certified vs. registered vs. licensed-what is the difference?” It is actually all connected, with slight differences depending on your specific specialization. You must be certified to get into the career, and licensed and registered to continue working in the field. These are all topics you should become more familiar with as you complete your education in radiography, nuclear medicine or ultrasound technology.
If you are going to become a radiologic technologist, also known as a Rad Tech or RT, you need to become certified. In order to get certified, you have get certified and registered through the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists. If you are going to go into ultrasound technology or sonography you will need to be certified and licensed through the American Registry of Diagnostic Medical Sonography. Nuclear medicine technologists must get their certification through the Nuclear Medicine Technology Certification Board.
So you’re probably still wondering what exactly the difference between certified, registered and licensed radiology professionals is. It’s simpler than it seems. Basically, certification is just the first step that you take after finishing your educational program and passing the required examinations. Registration is what you do annually from there on to continue working in this professional field. And licensure is something that differs with each state. Every state grants its own licenses for medical professionals such as radiology technicians to work in that state. This should all become clearer as you complete an accredited degree program in radiology, prepare for your career and get hands on training in the field.
If you are planning on becoming a radiography technician you should become acquainted with the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) and their membership. Likewise, ultrasound students should familiarize themselves with the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS) and those studying nuclear medicine should learn as much as possible about the Nuclear Medicine Technology Certification Board (NMTCB). Your certification, registry and licensure will be determined by these various organizations, and they can be valuable career resources.