Students can work through higher education programs from certificates to doctorate degrees within nuclear medicine. However, students that enroll in a vocational school can enter a certificate or associate’s degree program as an initial step to further education or to directly step into a career. These options are a great choice because most working professionals have a certificate, associate’s degree, or a bachelor’s degree.
Nuclear medicine utilizes radiopharmaceuticals to detect any harmful elements in the body. This is used for numerous reasons such as detecting diseases or other abnormal health problems. Physicians use the medical images that are produced by the industry’s technologies to diagnose and treat their patients. Depending on the level of education obtained by students they may help in diagnosing a patient prior to speaking with the physician. The vast amount of job responsibilities includes managing the imaging technology and reviewing the results of tests administered to patients.
Working through a certificate program is a viable option for students that can’t dedicate more time to educational study. Programs typical last one-year and students learn how to use nuclear technology to help physicians. Courses incorporate clinical hours to give students the chance to work directly with radiopharmaceuticals. Common courses include:
Nuclear Medicine Procedure
Curriculum teaches the different operations of a body’s organs and how to handle all equipment safely. Many programs have students complete an internship at the end of schooling to gain the proper knowledge to not only work in the field but also pass the certification exam given by the Nuclear Medicine Technology Certification Board.
To gain a deeper knowledge of the field most students start education at the associate’s degree level. The skills learned cover all areas of the profession giving students the knowledge to step directly into a career upon graduation. Common courses that students work through may include:
Nuclear Medicine Instrumentation
Nuclear Medicine Methodology
Students learn about how the radioisotopes affect the body, how they work, and how to detect problem areas by looking at the generated images. Specific coursework and on-the-job experience provides students with the capability of working with patients and their physicians. To gain further knowledge and increase job prospects many students go on to complete a bachelor’s degree program after gaining experience.