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Most radiation therapists complete programs that lead to an associate’s degree or bachelor’s degree in radiation therapy. Radiation therapists must be licensed or certified in most states. Requirements vary by state, but often include passing a national certification exam.Education
Employers usually prefer to hire applicants who have an associate’s degree or a bachelor's degree in radiation therapy. However, candidates may qualify for some positions by completing a 12-month certificate program.
Radiation therapy programs include courses in radiation therapy procedures and the scientific theories behind them. These programs often include experience in a clinical setting and courses in human anatomy and physiology, physics, algebra, computer science, and research methodology. In 2014, there were about 120 accredited educational programs recognized by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists.Important Qualities
Detail oriented. Radiation therapists must follow exact instructions and input exact measurements to make sure the patient is exposed to the correct amount of radiation.
Interpersonal skills. Radiation therapists work closely with patients. It is important that therapists be comfortable interacting with people who may be going through physical and emotional stress.
Physical stamina. Radiation therapists must be able to be on their feet for long periods and be able to lift and move patients who need assistance.
Technical skills. Radiation therapists work with computers and large pieces of technological equipment, so they must be comfortable operating those devices.Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations
In most states, radiation therapists must be licensed or certified. Requirements vary by state, but typically include graduation from an accredited radiation therapy program and American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification.
To become ARRT certified, an applicant must complete an accredited radiation therapy program, adhere to ARRT ethical standards, and pass the ARRT certification exam. The exam covers radiation protection and quality assurance, clinical concepts in radiation oncology, treatment planning, treatment delivery, and patient care and education. A list of accredited programs is available from ARRT.
Many jobs also require cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) or basic life support (BLS) certification.Advancement
With additional education and certification, therapists can become medical dosimetrists. Dosimetrists are responsible for calculating the correct dose of radiation that is used in the treatment of cancer patients.
|Job Title||Company||Location||Start Date||Salary|
|Medical Physicist||Trinity Health||Minot, ND||May 09, 2016||$225,000|
|Medical Physicist||Trinity Health||Minot, ND||Sep 13, 2016||$220,000|
|Medical Physicist II-Therapy||Adventist Health System/Sunbelt Inc.||Orlando, FL||Oct 10, 2016||$200,686|
|Medical Physicist||Swedishamerican Health System||Rockford, IL||Jun 16, 2016||$195,146|
|Medical Physicist II-Therapy||Adventist Health System/Sunbelt Inc.||Orlando, FL||Apr 26, 2016||$191,232|
|Medical Physicist||Susquehanna Health System||Williamsport, PA||Jan 10, 2016||$181,251|
|Medical Physicist||UPMC Susquehanna||Williamsport, PA||Jul 10, 2016||$181,251|
|Chief Medical Physicist||UPMC Presbyterian Shadyside||Erie, PA||Jan 05, 2016||$180,584|
|Medical Physicist||Benefis Health System||Great Falls, MT||Jul 22, 2016||$180,300|
|Medical Physicist||Baptist Memorial Hospital-Memphis||Memphis, TN||Jan 07, 2016||$176,602|
|Medical Physicist I||Vantage Oncology, LLC||Temecula, CA||Sep 05, 2015||$171,134|
|Medical Physicist||Advanced Medical Physics||Jacksonville, FL||Mar 01, 2015||$170,000|
|Medical Physicist||Allegheny Health Network||Kittanning, PA||Aug 19, 2016||$135,013|
|Clinical Instructor & Medical Physicist||Thomas Jefferson University||Philadelphia, PA||Jul 01, 2015||$135,000|
|Assistant Professor, Radiation Oncology Medical Physicist||BOR USGA OBO Georgia Regents University||Augusta, GA||Apr 03, 2016||$135,000|
|Medical Physicist||Allegheny Health Network||Pittsburgh, PA||Jun 01, 2015||$135,000|
|Medical Physicist I||Vantage Oncology LLC||San Bernardino, CA||Aug 26, 2016||$135,000|
|Medical Physicist||Svasan, Inc.||Marietta, OH||Jan 09, 2016||$135,000|
|Assistant Professor/Medical Physicist||University of Maryland, Baltimore||Baltimore, MD||Jan 07, 2016||$135,000|
|Medical Physicist||University of Nebraska Medical Center||Omaha, NE||Nov 20, 2016||$133,000|
|Medical Physicist||Willis-Knighton Medical Center, Inc.||Shreveport, LA||Aug 31, 2015||$120,000|
|Medical Physicist||Global Physics Solutions||Delray Beach, FL||Sep 15, 2016||$120,000|
|Medical Physicist||Global Physics Solutions||Glenwood, IL||Sep 20, 2016||$120,000|
|Medical Physicist||William Beaumont Hospital||Royal Oak, MI||May 27, 2015||$120,000|
|Medical Physicist||Banner Health||Chandler, AZ||May 23, 2016||$119,475 -
|Clinical Instructor/Medical Physicist||Indiana Univ. Purdue Univ. Indianapolis||Martinsville, IN||Jul 01, 2015||$118,959|
|Clinical Instructor/Medical Physicist||IU Health Care Associates||Indianapolis, IN||Jul 01, 2015||$118,959|
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