Students frequently ask us what salary they can expect when they finish medical career school and start their first jobs. This blog post discusses average salaries for ultrasound technicians, patient care technicians, medical assistants, Certified Nurse Aides, and Medical Billing & Coding specialists.*
Ultrasound Tech Salary
Ultrasound technicians play an essential role in helping identify and diagnose medical conditions and diseases. They scan and image organs and other structures inside a patient’s body, using machines that rely on sound wave technology. These ultrasound images are used to diagnose and monitor medical conditions, abnormalities or diseases. The field of Ultrasound can be a fulfilling career and one with many exciting prospects, as demand for technicians continues to grow every year. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobs for diagnostic medical sonographers are expected to increase by 39% in the next decade, so many exciting career prospects await!
On average, ultrasound technicians receive an annual median pay of $67,170 (as of May 2013). According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, lower-level salaries start around $45,840, and highest paid ultrasound technologists can earn an income of around $92,070. Annual salary for an ultrasound tech can increase with more work experience, and salary does depend on your employer and location.
In comparison to the average national salary of $62,660, the salary for ultrasound technicians employed in New Jersey is higher. Of all metropolitan areas, the New York-White Plains, Wayne, NY-NJ area had the highest level of employment for Ultrasound technologists, and offered an average wage of $67,410, according to May 2013 BLS figures.
Patient Care Technician Salary
A fast paced and demanding job, patient care technicians are responsible for many tasks, including obtaining blood and tissue samples from patients, monitoring vital signs, taking patient histories, and helping patients with all of their physical and hygienic needs.
Good news for PCTs who work in New Jersey! Average Patient Care Technician salaries for job postings in New Jersey are 7% higher than average Patient Care Technician salaries for job postings nationwide.
The following three job search websites show average salaries for Patient Care Technicians:
Indeed.com – $36,000
CareerBuilder – $29,090
SimplyHired – $35,000
Medical Assistant Technician Salary
Medical Assistants help examine and treat of patients under the direction of a physician. They may interview patients, measure vital signs (i.e., pulse rate, temperature, blood pressure, weight, and height), and record this information on patient charts. Medical Assistant Technicians may be required to draw and collect blood samples from patients and prepare specimens for laboratory analysis. They also prepare treatment rooms for patient examination.
The median annual wage for medical assistants was $29,370 in May 2012. According to salary.com, Medical Assistants receive on average $32,956 every year. Indeed.com shows an average salary of $41,000 for medical assistants in New Jersey.
Average Medical Assistant salaries for job postings in New Jersey are 7% higher than average Medical Assistant salaries for job postings nationwide. The top percentile of Medical Assistants make $37,960 annually, according to salary.com.
Employment of medical assistants is projected to grow 29% from 2012 to 2022, much faster than the industry average. As the baby-boom population ages, the demand for preventive medical services will increase. As physician practices expand, they will need to hire more assistants to perform routine administrative and clinical duties, making Medical Assistant a great job, and one very much in demand in the years to come.
Certified Nurse Aide (C.N.A.) Salary
Certified nurse assistants (C.N.A.s) provide care to patients, often in facilities such as nursing homes. They assist patients with basic needs on a daily basis, including bathing, dressing, positioning, eating, grooming, and more. C.N.A.’s often provide care for multiple patients with a variety of health needs, so they must be sensitive to the requirements of individual patients and knowledgeable of the types of care that should be administered.
According to the BLS, the median annual wage for nursing assistants was $24,420 in May 2012 and the median annual wage for orderlies was $23,990. Employment of nursing assistants and orderlies is projected to grow 21% from 2012 to 2022, faster than the average for all occupations. Because of the growing elderly population, many nursing assistants and orderlies will be needed in long-term care facilities, making it a great career to pursue.
Indeed.com shows that CNAs earn $24,000 to $32,000, depending on the place of employment.
Medical Billing & Coding Specialist Salary
A medical billing and coding career involves administrative work in a hospital, physician’s clinic or other healthcare facility and inputting and coding patient information into a database. In 2012, BLS reported that Medical Billing & Coding specialists earned approximately $34,160 per year. Another source shows that on average, medical billing and coders annual salary can range from $38,000 to $50,000, depending on their level of experience. Medical billing and coding is one of the higher salaries of healthcare administration careers. Medical billing and coding specialists are also in high demand, due to the growing number of patients whose records need to be maintained.
We hope this blog post gives you a ballpark estimate of the salary you can expect within your respective field of interest. The future is looking bright for those with medical career training and there is no better time than now to start your career.
*We have obtained these numbers from a variety of sources, including job websites (indeed.com) & the Bureau of Labor Statistics.