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Across our nation today...

...tens of thousands of people are getting x-rays
"My son fell off his skateboard, and his wrist is hurt."

Thousands more are having mammograms,
"Well, there is a history of breast cancer in our family."

CT scans,
"Dad might have had a stroke!"

and MRIs.
"This should point us to the precise trouble spot in your spine."

or cardiovascular-interventional treatments.
"This might mean no surgery."

or having nuclear medicine scans
"That PET/CT scan will tell us more."

Others are having bone density scans
"Have you noticed how Mom seems to be stooping over?"

and ultrasound images.
"Your baby (it’s a girl!) looks healthy."

And ARRT-registered R.T.s are there to provide quality patient care.

Radiologic technologists are the third largest category of healthcare professionals, surpassed in number only by physicians and nurses. As with other healthcare providers, R.T.s’ qualifications are vital to quality patient care. That’s where we come in.

We’re the ARRT: The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists. We test, certify, and annually register more than a quarter-of-a-million radiologic technologists to promote high standards of patient care. We award the "Registered Technologist," or "R.T.," designation to individuals who have completed the prescribed classroom and clinical education, passed the appropriate exam, and met the ethics requirements. And we ensure their continuing education and ongoing compliance with our high standards by requiring annual registration of their certificate.

Certification by ARRT is voluntary, not mandatory. But employers, state licensing agencies, and federal regulators view ARRT’s credential as an indicator that a person has met recognized national standards for medical imaging and radiation therapy professionals.

ARRT certification is a win-win situation. From the technologist’s point of view, it’s a career-building tool: employers use it as a prerequisite for employment; and states recognize national certification by ARRT as a requirement for licensure. Closer to home for all of us, certification assures patients that their medical imaging and radiation therapy is in capable hands.

How Are Radiologic Technologists Deemed ‘Qualified’?

First comes initial certification. Certification is the process of initially recognizing individuals who have satisfied certain standards within a profession. A person is certified by ARRT after completing an approved educational program, complying with the ethics standards, and passing a certification exam.

Then comes annual registration. Registration is the yearly procedure required to maintain certification. ARRT registrants are those who, having already fulfilled the requirements for initial certification, continue to meet the requirements for annual registration. The ARRT annually registers the certificates of individuals who meet the following three criteria: agreeing to comply with the ARRT Rules and Regulations, continuing to comply with the ARRT Standards of Ethics, and meeting our continuing education requirements.

Only technologists who are currently registered — which means that they have renewed within the past year — may designate themselves as ARRT Registered Technologists and use the initials "R.T." after their names.

Federal laws regulate personnel qualifications in some modalities — mammography, for example — but they accredit the healthcare facility rather than licensing the individual radiologic technologist who is providing patient care. And while many states have laws regulating who can perform radiologic procedures, they are typically based on ARRT certification.

Some employers and state agencies may require ARRT certification, but not necessarily current registration. Unless they require current registration by ARRT, employers cannot assume that the person has complied with the ethics requirements or the continuing education requirements.

To ensure that they have current information on a technologist or radiation therapist, employers should require certification and registration with the ARRT.

Ask to see the technologist's credentials. An ARRT-issued certificate with a current year's seal or a wallet card with a "valid through..." date will indicate ARRT qualifications.

You can also check the ARRT Directory, which lists all R.T.s except those who have requested that release of their information be restricted. And if you can’t find a name there, you can call our office at (651) 687-0048, ext. 8540, where a Continuing Registration representative will assist you.

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