Becoming an Ultrasound Technician in Colorado - CO
Steps to Become an Ultrasound Tech in Colorado
- Get a high school diploma. Sonography training programs in Colorado are offered through online schools, as well as community colleges. Incoming students must have a minimum of a high school diploma or GED.
- Be healthy and current with all vaccinations. Aspiring ultrasound technicians are required to undergo a physical exam to ensure they are in good health. They must also be current with their varicella, hepatitis B, tuberculosis, and measles shots. If they have not had any vaccinations, they should begin a vaccination schedule six months before they apply to a program.
- Obtain a cardiopulmonary resuscitation(CPR) certification. The American Registry of Radiology Technicians (ARRT) and the State of Colorado require all ultrasound technicians to get certified in CPR. CPR certification programs only take a few weeks to complete when taking one class weekly, and they are offered virtually everywhere (churches, synagogues, temples, community centers, fire departments, police departments, hospitals, private organizations, etc).
- Undergo a drug test and criminal background check. When students go through diagnostic medical sonography programs, they are also required to gain clinical experience. Most of the clinics they complete their internships through are considered working environments, so candidates must pay special attention to keeping a clear record.
- Get an associate's or bachelor's degree in a patient care-related field. Some certification programs in Colorado require students to gain experience in another area of patient care before they apply. Students who choose to follow these programs should strongly consider nursing, occupational therapy, radiology, or any other Associate's or Bachelor's degree program that focuses on developing their interpersonal skills and medical knowledge. Candidates with associate's or bachelor's degree will also benefit from their education in the long run, since they will be eligible for more opportunities than those with little to no post-secondary education.
- Go through an ARRT-approved certification or Associate's degree program. Colorado applicants who have already obtained their degrees should be able to apply their general education credits to their diagnostic medical sonography program, which can shorten the amount of time it will take to obtain another Associate's degree. ARRT-approved DMS programs focus on providing students with a general background in sonography, and prepare them with on-site experience.
- Sit for the ARRT primary and post-primary certification exams. Once candidates have completed a sonography program and gained enough clinical experience, they must sit for the ARRT Sonography exams. The exams measure a candidate's knowledge of her profession, and determine whether she is ready to become an ultrasound technician.