Upon entering the x-ray program, many prospective students think that they will be simply “taking x-rays”. Well, let me be the first to tell you that the responsibilities of a radiographer span far beyond taking pretty pictures. Radiology technologists are an integral part of a healthcare team tasked with obtaining radiographic images to achieve optimal patient care outcomes. The team depends on you to provide competent care within your scope of duty. You must remember that you are the expert team member in radiographic imaging.
Radiographers must also have patient care skills. While patients are in our care, we are responsible for monitoring the patient’s condition, handling medical equipment, and communicating with patients and their families about aspects of the procedures that take place. In some facilities, technologists will start IVs, obtain vital signs, and respond to medical emergencies. Critical-thinking skills and timely response are valuable attributes that are essential in your role as an imaging professional. Finally, radiographers must always perform duties with safety in mind.
You will be responsible for using techniques that will minimize radiation exposure to your patients, the general public, and yourself. Although general radiographic procedures present minimal risk of causing overall biologic damage, imaging professionals can never take for granted the possible effects of radiation exposure. As a radiographer, you literally provide a birds-eye view into the human body.