Critical Care Technologist Jobs: Career and Salary Facts

Critical care technologist is a title unique to the United Kingdom; however, this position is similar to that of a biomedical equipment technician. Continue reading for more information about the training and certification requirements to work as a biomedical equipment technician, and find out the employment outlook and average salary. Schools offering Allied Health degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Does a Critical Care Technologist Do?

Critical care technologists, more commonly known as biomedical equipment technicians or medical equipment repairers in the United States, are responsible for the installation and maintenance of medical devices and machines. For instance, they set up machines such as CAT scanners and voice-controlled operating tables in hospitals, and then show medical professionals how to use them. They also perform routine maintenance checks and software calibrations, as well as major repairs if a particular machine is malfunctioning. In some cases, they replace parts or entire machines. The table below provides some additional details about this career:

Degree Required Associate's
Education Field of Study Biomedical equipment technology
Key Responsibilities Maintain and repair equipment, keep record of maintenance history
Licensure Requirements Certification is voluntary
Job Growth (2014-2024)* 6%
Median Salary (2015)* $46,340

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Is a Critical Care Technologist?

A critical care technologist (CCT) is a position found in the United Kingdom that refers to someone who sets up, manages, maintains and repairs equipment used in the care of critically ill patients. They might work with dialysis machines, defibrillators and infusion pumps. While this title is not commonly used in the U.S., the duties are similar to that of a biomedical equipment technician (BMET).

Biomedical equipment technicians, also known as medical equipment repairers, work with a wide range of electronic and electrical equipment used in hospitals and other healthcare facilities. Besides repairing the equipment, they may also be responsible for performing regular maintenance, keeping records of repairs and teaching other medical professionals how to use the equipment.

What Education Do I Need?

While some biomedical equipment technicians learn their skills through on-the-job training, employers tend to prefer job applicants who have at least an associate's degree, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Associate's degree programs in biomedical equipment technology take two years to complete and include a combination of hands-on training, such as internships and labs, and classroom lectures.

Common course topics include general equipment repair, such as electronic soldering, robotics, medical electronics and circuits. While enrolled in this degree program, you can also take courses that train you on specific equipment, such as imaging equipment, diagnostic equipment, clinical instruments and therapeutic care equipment.

Is Certification Necessary?

While not required to work as a biomedical equipment technician, certification is available from the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI). The AAMI offers certification in three specialty areas: biomedical equipment, radiology equipment and laboratory equipment. To earn certification, you need to pass an exam and meet a specific combination of education and experience, such as completing a 2-year biomedical equipment technology and having two years of work experience.

What Could I Expect to Earn?

According to the BLS, most biomedical equipment technicians earned between $28,290 and $76,350 as of May 2015. The median salary was $46,340. Salaries also vary by industry. In 2015, colleges and universities were the highest paying employers for medial repair techs, with an average salary of $60,690, followed closely by drug wholesalers, which paid an average of $57,910.

What Are Some Related Alternative Careers?

If you want to become a technician, you could also consider a job as an industrial machinery mechanic. In this job, you would set up, maintain and repair machines in industrial settings, such as manufacturing companies. A high school diploma is the minimum educational requirement. If you would rather work in the medical field, you could consider a position as a medical appliance technician. They construct and repair smaller-scale medical devices, such as arch supports and leg braces, which must be fit to meet the needs of specific patients. A high school diploma is also needed for this job.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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