Biomedical Equipment Technician Training
By Allison Skoglind, allied health world contributing writer
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Why should BMETs get certified?
Many biomedical technicians use wisdom gained through education and training to become certified professionals. One reason to get certified is because it exhibits internationally recognized competency in the field. Next, many employers prefer or require employees that are certified prior to hiring them. Also, certification can instill a sense of personal pride and confidence in occupational competency. Finally, certified BMETs are often awarded higher salaries compared to those without certification status.
What is the certification process for biomedical engineers?
The International Certification Commission for Clinical Engineering and Biomedical Technology (ICC) works in association with the United States Certification Commission (USCC) and the Board of Examiners for Biomedical Equipment Technicians to administer an examination that tests the theoretical and practical knowledge of biomedical professionals. Those that successfully pass examination are granted official certification and may use the title of “certified biomedical equipment technician” or CBET. However, before a BMET can be considered for examination and certification they must fulfill certain eligibility requirements.
How do BMETs qualify for the certification examination?
There are three different ways that allow biomedical engineers to sit for BMET certification examination. One way to qualify is by completing an academic program in a biomedical discipline that results in an associate’s degree along with two years of full-time work experience in a biomedical technician job. Another way to qualify is by earning an associate’s degree in electronics technology along with three years of full-time work experience practicing as a BMET. The last way to qualify is by having four years of full-time work experience practicing as a BMET.
How do biomedical engineering technicians apply for BMET examination?
Once one of these eligibility pathways has been satisfied, the next step is to apply to sit for the BMET examination. Professionals can download an “Application for Examination for Certified Biomedical Equipment Technician, Radiology Equipment Specialist, and Laboratory Equipment Specialist” from the ICC website. This application will request a BMET’s personal identifying information, current employment information, work experience history, and prior education achievements. This completed application must be submitted to the ICC’s Professional Testing Corporation at least six weeks before actual examination. The application processing fee is $295.
What subjects does the BMET certification exam cover
If the application is approved, biomedical engineers are permitted to schedule an examination; examination schedules are posted on the ICC website. The BMET exams cover five major subject areas: anatomy and physiology (13%), public safety in the healthcare facility (17%), fundamentals of electricity, electronics, and solid-state device (17%), medical equipment function and operation (26%), and medical equipment problem solving (27%). The ICC does not provide review courses or study guides for examinees.
The examination is four hours in length and consists of 150 multiply choice questions. Only those that score a 105/150 or higher will pass examination and there is no limit to the number of times the examination can be taken. The test results will be sent out within six weeks of examination. If passed, certification is awarded.
How long is BMET certification valid?
BMET certification must be renewed on a triennial basis (every three years) at which time CMETs must show proof of completing at least fifteen hours of continuing education points in biomedical-related activities. To accrue points, BMETs can attend educational seminars, conferences, and meetings that have occupational relevance or they can participate in speaking, reading, and writing activities through a professional biomedical association. Failure to complete continuing education requirements for renewal or will result in certification revocation or suspension.
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