What You’ll Learn at X-Ray Technician School

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Posted on 30th April 2010 by admin in Uncategorized

So, you’re thinking about attending a radiology or x-ray school, but you’re not sure what to expect from the courses and training.  Hopefully, I can shed some light on what to expect from most schools offering x-ray programs.  Because learning how to perform x-rays is a very hands on skill, campus programs are much more prevalent than online.

Most x-ray programs start with general courses on medical terminology, medical ethics, a basic physics review, and anatomy.  The goal with these courses is to provide you with the foundational knowledge you will need to thoroughly understand what you learn in the more specific courses in x ray and radiology technology and techniques.

The next phase is the core radiology courses where you will apply your knowledge of anatomy to patient positioning and image quality.  Remember, when you are out there in the real world, your primary job will be to obtain the best possible image for proper diagnosis by the physician or radiologist.  This involves understanding the correct angles, exposure, and machine settings to get the best result.  In this phase of your training, expect to take classes on radiation exposure and quality control, radiobiology, patient positioning, radiographic equipment, and detailed instruction on procedures and protocols.

The last phase of most x-ray technician programs is the applied learning phase where you will put your classroom knowledge to clinical practice.  This often involves being assigned to work with a seasoned x-ray technician at a local diagnostic imaging center.  Here, you will do job shadowing and will perform a set of basic competencies, which will be observed and graded.  You will get a chance to work with real patients in an actual clinical setting.  Once you have proven that you can perform a set of predetermined tasks, you are ready for that first job of your own.

Once you have completed the program, you may need to become licensed in the state you will be working in.  You will also need to determine whether you want to become certified through the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT).  Get your education started by learning more about and kick-start a rewarding career in medical imaging.

Allied Health Schools: Tips

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Posted on 28th April 2010 by admin in Uncategorized

Don’t be afraid to get emotionally involved with patients.  The fact is, that your patients are an important part of not only your life, and how you spend a majority of your day, but they are also an important part of your job security. There will be some patients who touch your heart more then others while working in the allied health fields….just like there will probably be some you would rather avoid.  As a health care provider,  you will play an important role in each patient’s life.  It is natural to develop some attachments and share their feelings of elation when things work out and go well, or disappointments when things are not as good as planned.  So you will share in disappointment and sadness, happiness and relief, when things go wrong….or right.  One example is allied health students that become LVNs, LPNs, or nurses.  They either dearly love or detest their clinical rotations in labor and delivery because they tend to become so emotional when participating in the birth process.  Some nurses find that hospice is where they can make the biggest difference in someone’s life.  Others just can’t handle the constant issues of death and dying.  Caring is what you do best, so now all you have to do is find which niche best suits your scope.  If becoming a nurse, LVN or LPN is not for you there are sooooo many other options such as: radiologist technician, cardiovascular tech, phlebotomy expert, an EMT, a pharmacist etc….etc…..Get information now about which jobs interest you at the “find a school” button on the right side of this blog.  Cheers!

Radiology Degree

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Posted on 23rd April 2010 by admin in Uncategorized

Exploring Radiology Degree Options:
So you are thinking of getting started in the field of radiology but unsure which degree option is right for you?  In the past, hospitals created informal training programs for employees interested in working in their radiology division; however, as national and state standards have begun to emerge, more formal training programs for radiology have become available through colleges, universities, and vocational technical schools.
For those seeking entry-level positions in radiology, an associates degree is the most popular choice due to the relatively short amount of time required in school.  There are some radiology certificate programs that will prepare you for entry-level work; however, these usually fall short of preparing you for national certification through the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) and are sometimes not accredited through the Joint Review Committee on Education for Radiologic Technology (JRCERT).  If you are seeking the professional title of Radiologic Technologist, you will need to complete a formal education that is accredited by JRCERT, then pass the test administered by the ARRT.  In order to accomplish this, most students opt for an associates degree, which should sufficiently prepare you for the test and allow you to confidently enter into the field.
Another option is to complete a radiology bachelors degree, which is not necessary for entry into the field, but will provide you with a deeper level of instruction and ultimately, more knowledge in the field of medical imaging as a whole.  A bachelors degree is a good option for those looking for leadership and management roles as well.

Masters degrees in radiology are usually pursued by those looking to attain the role of Radiologist Assistant, which is an advanced level radiology professional that works closely with Radiologist M.D.’s and assists with diagnosis in complex scenarios. Start your search for the radiology degree that is right for you and kick start your career in the fascinating world of medical imaging.

LPNs and LVNs: Survival Tips

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Posted on 22nd April 2010 by admin in Uncategorized

It is not up to your employer to ensure that you take your breaks or stay home on days you are sick.  It is up to you.  Make sure, as a LPN, a LVN or a nurse, that  you take your breaks.  It’s easy to get into the habit of skipping them and in some settings, you may feel guilty because there is so much work, or you are short handed.  You may even experience peer pressure to skip breaks.  Even if you can’t take the full amount of time because you are so busy, try to take some time.  Everyone needs to eat and take bathroom breaks.  Help eachother to be able to do so.  This is where a strong allied health team approach will be most helpful.  Don’t abuse the situation, but do help each other to get away from the unit.  Some facilities have breakers or float personnel who just cover for breaks and meals.  An allied health team must have a licensed person on duty at all times.  Furthermore, if you are truly sick, stay home!  Don’t bring your germs to work;  your co-workers and patients do not want to catch your germs.  See your doctor if necessary.  Get rest and drink fluids so that you can get well as soon as possible.  In an already short staffed environment, they need you back at work.  Don’t try to overextend your self.  Some LPNs, LVNs and nurses work three twelve-hour shifts a week at one hospital and two or three shifts at another.  This may make you a lot of money, but it can wear you down and burn you out.  Be reasonable and realistic.  Sooner or later those who overextend themselves hit a brick wall.  That’s when mistakes and injuries are more likely to happen.  Take care of yourself in order to take better care of others.

LPN’s and LVN’s

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Posted on 21st April 2010 by admin in Uncategorized

As a nurse, an LPN or an LVN it is important to take the time to educate the patients you come in contact with.  Each time you encounter a patient you are assessing him/her and the situation.  You’re also expected to carry out any planned care assigned to you while evaluating its necessity, success, or failure.  The data you gather, however,  is both subjective and objective.  Be sure to always listen closely to what your patient is telling you, and also how they are telling you.  What has he/she learned from this health care experience?  What does the patient understand to be true about their signs and symptoms?  What does your patient know about how to control or prevent their signs and symptoms?  Each time you give a medication to a patient, be sure it is interactive; you should tell them what it is and what it’s for.  If they already know all of this information, try asking them something about the medication they have been assigned or the diagnosis for which they are taking the medication.  Every encounter with a patient is a learning experience for them.  Recognize the opportunity you have at each of these occasions to improve the relationship you are forging.  Make the most of every encounter.  Each little effort you make as an allied health professional will go a long way for improved outcomes, relationships, and it will also help your patients to become more accountable for their own health care.   In your position as a nurse, a LPN or a LVN, you can teach patients about their health status, and how to cope and prevent re-occurance.  You can help patients ascertain what to expect and what to do in certain situations.  In your position, you can help to empower patients to take care of their health.

LPNs and LVNs

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Posted on 21st April 2010 by admin in Uncategorized

Nurses, LPN’s and LVN’s should plan on being advocates for their patients, but also need to remain professional and careful not to influence them at all times.  If a nurse, LPN or LVN are working with a patient whose physician is often difficult to work with, you need to follow physician orders and care for all  patients with equality.  You should never express or share an opinion to a patient or a patient’s family members.  Plan to remain professional at all times and keep personal opinions to yourself.  If a patient brings up a complaint, the only comment you should make is to remind them that they have choices and options and leave it be.  While performing duties as a nurse, LPN or LVN patients might ask you to recommend a physician, but this is not a good idea.  You can provide them with the names of several doctors to choose from, but it is in your best interest to remain unbiased.  Each facility may have rules that forbid making recommendations, and in that case, you must tell patients to call a physician referral service or other resource. On the other hand, if a patient ever complains of violence or verbal abuse, employers can hold you liable for not reporting it.  Always check into the proper steps to reporting any issues of that regard.  Many hospitals have instituted policies and rules that require physicians and nurses to document and report any sort of abuse that a patient may complain about.  Protect your self and your employer by being aware of and following your facility rules closely.

Phlebotemy: ID Bands

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Posted on 20th April 2010 by admin in Uncategorized

Patient Identification is the process of verifying a patient’s identity, and is the most important step in speciment collection.  Obtaining a specimen from the wrong patient can have serious, even fatal consequences, especially specimens for type and crossmatch prior to blood transfusion.  Misidentifuing a patient or speciemn can be grounds for dismissal of the person responsible and can even lead to a malpractice suit against a phlebotemy specialist…so use caution.  Be sure to verify Name and Date of Birth.  When identifying a patient, ask the patient to state his or her full name and identificaton number and/or date of birth.  For example, never say, “Are you Mrs. Smith?” A person who is very ill, hard of hearing, or sedated may say “yes” to anything.  Use a “memory jogger” such as having a patient spell an unusual name, or comment in some positive way about a name, to help remember that you verified it.  You should make sure that the patient’s response matches the information on the requisition.  When checking identification bracelets, once you have made sure that the patient’s response matches the information on the requisition, proceed to check the patient’s ID band which is usually found on the wrist.  Inpatients are normally required to wear an ID band.  The typical ID band lists the patient’s name and hospital identification number or medical record number.  Additional information includes the patient’s birth date or age, room number, and bed designation, and physician’s name.  ID bands are an important tool for phlebotemy specialists to consult.  We will expand more on this topic tomorrow.

Radiology Schools

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Posted on 15th April 2010 by admin in Uncategorized

I just discovered a new website that has tons of information on radiologists, and how to become a radiologist.  I think it would be wise to reference it occasionally since it could be just one more resource to discover all you need to know about radiology, and also which radiology schools to attend.  The websight has everything you would want to know and some of the categories it offers are information on all the different levels you can achieve in education as a radiologist.  There are three levels that they touch on including an associates degree, certification, bachelors degree, or a radiologist masters degree.  There is also quite a bit of valuable information about careers.  When you become a radiologist, it is helpful to know that you can use it as a degree to compliment another such as nursing.  Some examples of careers they educate potential radiologist students on is the typical radiologist technologist degree, medical assistant with limited X-ray capabilities, X-ray technicians (which is just another way of saying radiologist technologist, Ultrasound technician, MRI technician, Nuclear medicine technologist, radiologist assistant, radiologic nurse, and a radiologist M.D.  Becoming a radiologist technician may just be your first step in learning and embracing your dreams.  You may want to grow in your profession to learn all different aspects of Allied Health Fields.  The more education and experience you have, the more options that will be open to you.  While exploring your options to become a radiologist technician be sure to check out www.radiologist-schools.com, for tons of helpful information.

Phlebotomy Schools: Capillaries

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Posted on 12th April 2010 by admin in Uncategorized

Capillaries work with the heart like veins do.  Capillaries are microscopic, one-cell-thick vessels that connect the aerterioles and venules, forming a bridge between the arterial and venuous circulation.  Blood in the capillaries is a mixture of both venous and arterial blood.  In the systemic circulation, arterial blood delivers oxygen and nutrients to the capillaries.  The thin capillary walls allow the exchange of oxygen for carbon dioxide and nutrients for wastes between the cells and the blood.  Carbon dioxide and wastes are then  carried away in the venuous blood.  In the pulmonary circulation, carbod dioxide is delivered to the capillaries in the lungs and exchanged for oxygen.  The flow of blood involves the network of arteries, veins, and capillaries.  This team forms the pathway for the flow of blood throughout the body that allows for the delivery of oxygen and nutrients to the body cells, and the removal of carbon dioxide and other waste products of metabolism.  A lumen is the internal space of a blood vessel through which the blood flows.  Venuous valves are thin membranous leaflets composed primarily of epithelium similar to the semilunar valves of the heart.  Most of the venous system is flowing against the pull of gravity.  As blood is moved forward by skeletal muscle movement, for example, the valves help keep it flowing toward the heart by allowing blood flow in only one direction.  The heart is the main organ you will learn about in phlebotomy schools;  this is the “heart” of a phlebotomist’s education.

Phlebotomy Schools: Blood and Fainting

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Posted on 8th April 2010 by admin in Uncategorized

In many instances people are squeamish about blood, especially their own!  I am assuming since you have gone into a profession that deals with only blood, this is not the case for you….but what about your patients.  What should you do if someone is scared to have their blood taken and resist, or get sick, or worst yet faint.  Some people are afraid of blood because your body has associated blood in the past with pain; the sight of your own blood has usually involved pain.  Your bodies response incorporates a natural defense mechanism and a patient may feel faint or nauseous.  It may also be that needles terrify them.  Reassure patients that you have been trained to hand and use hypodermics and IV needles prior to injecting the patient.  Let the patient know that a needle is simply an instrument to help you assist the patient in getting well, and alleviating pain.  Use compassion with each patient and communicate all throughout the process.  If the patient is afraid they will faint, place them in a chair and encourage them to look away.  Sometimes it is helpful to me to bite on something or squeeze a towel with my other hand.  Some of the reason I personally don’t like giving blood is that I have such small veins.  Sometimes it has taken nurses upto five tries to get my blood.  I am always a little skeptical when I see a nurse coming towards me with a needle and a rubber tube to take my blood.  Phlebotomy schools will teach you how to deal most effectively with patients.