Douglas G. Wilson douglas at NB.NET
Tue Mar 6 22:56:16 UTC 2001

 From Jim Landau:

>A medical technician is someone who goes to school for three months and helps
>out in doctors' offices.  A medical technologist goes to school for four
>years and does lab tests in the hospital and is paid a good deal more.

I can speak with some certainty about radiologic technologists (RT's) in
PA. I just spoke briefly with a technologist administrator. Apparently
"technician" is obsolete as an "official" designation in this field:
they're all "technologists" now. In PA, the hospital RT's are "registered"
and "certified" by the state (they take exams etc., but I don't know the
whole story); in some other states, they are "licensed", which apparently
is a little different legally. The typical RT has undergone two years of
education post high school -- either in an RT program at a hospital, or at
a college (where an A.S. degree apparently is given). Apparently the
persons who perform X-rays in physician offices can get limited
certification, with much less schooling -- but I guess they're still
"technologists" of a sort. Each state has its own regulations (or lack
thereof). Nuclear medicine technologists have similar education and

It is my impression (from a position of ignorance) that a "medical
technologist" (MT) typically has a B.S. degree or equivalent (as Jim Landau
says), while a "medical laboratory technician" (MLT) typically has an A.S.
degree (two years) or equivalent. According to the American Society of
Clinical Pathologists Web page, the *average* salary of an MLT is similar
to the *starting* salary of an MT.

There are other technicians/technologists of various sorts in the medical
field. Again, I believe the exact requirements vary from state to state.

-- Doug Wilson

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