Is Medical Technology A Good Career?

Introduction:  Is Medical Technology A Good Career?. Choosing to work in medical technology is a great career decision. Many fields within the healthcare sector can expect significant job growth over the next ten years, including medical technicians.

You should recognize the difference between medical laboratory technicians, also known as medical laboratory scientists, and medical technicians.

While a bachelor’s degree in science is usually required for technicians, technicians graduate with an associate’s degree or earn a certification. Medical technicians take on more responsibilities and perform more complex tasks. 

Is Medical Technology A Good Career?
Is Medical Technology A Good Career?

A career as a medical technologist is a good choice for someone who is analytical, empathetic with patients, detail-oriented in reading and executing medical orders, and has good skills.

They must be able to perform long hours on their feet while collecting data. This would be a rewarding career for those who want to use medicine to help diagnose and diagnose diseases in patients.

Medical technology at a glance

Medical technicians play an important role in the medical industry. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median national salary for medical technicians is $46,680 per year as of 2020.

You’ll typically work in healthcare facilities and laboratories (more than half of medical technologists work in hospitals), and some localities require you to be licensed or registered.

In addition to supervising and training technicians, medical technicians collect and analyze body fluids. Using advanced equipment and techniques, technicians record test results and report their findings to doctors and other practitioners. You should plan to work around the clock and wear protective clothing and gear within the workplace.

Medical Technology Careers

As you consider the type of medical technology career you want, think about the work environment in which you will thrive. For example, if you like working on a close-knit team where you depend on them to get things done quickly. In a fast-paced environment, a surgical tech position in a hospital may be for you.

Medical technicians can also enjoy upward career momentum. Earning a bachelor’s degree to become a medical technologist is one way to go.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, most medical technicians work in hospitals. Laboratories and doctors’ offices are other common work conditions for medical technicians.

If you plan to work as a phlebotomist, your career path may direct you to a hospital, lab, or donation facility. Some phlebotomists also tour to see patients.

Operating and delivery rooms in hospitals are where most surgical technologies are needed. Still, your career path may also lead you to work in outpatient care facilities or with a surgeon who performs specialized surgery.

In addition to general medical technology practice, you can focus on several specialties. These include:

  • Molecular biology technologists test cell samples for proteins and nucleic acids.
  • Immunologists examine the response to foreign bodies.
  • Clinical chemistry technologists who analyze the hormonal and chemical nature of bodily fluids
  • Immunohematology technologists collect and prepare blood and plasma for transfusion.
  • Microbiologists who identify microorganisms.
  • Forensic medical technologists assist in criminal investigations.

Depending on your specialization, you can expect to find employment in medical facilities, pharmaceutical companies, research organizations, and governments.

A medical technology degree will also be an excellent stepping stone to more advanced microbiology fields, including mycology, virology, bacteriology, and many others.

Medical Technology Courses

If you plan to earn an associate’s degree or certificate in medical technology, you can expect to take statistics, math, biology, microbiology, and chemistry courses.

Depending on your program, you will also need to take the following courses:

  • Hematology and Coagulation
  • Statistics
  • Anatomy and Physiology
  • Clinical Chemistry
  • Urinalysis and Body Fluids
  • Medical Microbiology
  • Clinical Laboratory Sciences

 Is medical technology a good career?

Yes, being a medical technologist is a good profession. Medical technicians are paid decently, have many opportunities for promotions, have above-average job satisfaction, and are in demand.

A medical technologist earns about $60,000 annually, but some can earn up to $80,000 annually. There are several paths available to medical technicians as they gain work experience.

 For example, a medical technologist director can earn well over 6 figures. Medical technicians (MTs) are important in assisting doctors and nurse practitioners in diagnosing, treating, and care for patients.

Also known as clinical laboratory scientists, clinical laboratory scientists, and clinical laboratory technicians, individuals who pursue this career analyze tissue, cell, and body fluid (blood and urine) samples.

A medical technologist has good growth potential. For example, many medical technicians become laboratory supervisors, managers, or directors. A laboratory medical director can earn over 100k a year.

However, many medical technicians have to work long hours. Most specialists work full-time in facilities that operate 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. As such, many medical technicians are expected to work nights, weekends, or overnights.

Largely due to aging baby boomers and many insured Americans, the healthcare industry will grow significantly over the next decade. In response to this growth, the demand for medical technicians will increase.

More than 330,000 jobs are available nationally, but the BLS predicts a 13 percent increase between 2010 and 2020. These figures vary depending on the skills in the field, and these diverse paths open the door to many career opportunities.

Compare salaries by area.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics 2021 Occupational Outlook Handbook, here are the average annual salaries for medical techs by workplace:

  • Outpatient care centers: $59,750
  • Hospitals, state, local and private: $59,880
  • Colleges, universities, vocational schools: $54,470
  • Clinical and diagnostic laboratories: $56,050
  • Physicians’ offices: $53,060

Final Words

Earning your associate’s degree or certificate in medical technology is the foremost step toward pursuing a profession as a technician. To become a medical technologist, you must earn your bachelor’s degree.

Contacting your state’s health board to learn about licensing requirements is also good. Some circumstances will look for certification as part of their licensing criteria. Once you’ve completed your basic education, you can pursue certification in a specific field, such as clinical biology or cytotechnology.

Before enrolling in school, it’s a good idea to consider the qualities and skills required of a medical technician or technologist. These roles require physical prowess and the ability to use complex technology. 

Also read: History of medical technology; Medical Technology Benefits; Medical Laboratory Science Vs Medical Technology