How to Become a Nuclear Medicine Technologist

How to Become a Nuclear Medicine Technologist

Beginning in 2015, all programs will start to be offered at the Bachelor Degree level as recommended by the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging(SNMMI).

Also beginning in 2015, the only programs recognized by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists will be associate degree programs or higher.

The Nuclear Medicine Technology Certification Board will also begin recognizing only those programs that are programmatically accredited by the Joint Review Committee on Educational Programs in Nuclear Medicine Technology (JRCNMT) starting in 2016.

1. Complete a Nuclear Medicine Technology Program

A program in nuclear medicine technology can range in length from two to four years; either an associate's or a bachelor's program.

These programs provide in-class work as well as clinical on-site training and can either be taken at a community college or a 4-year college or university.

The curriculum includes the following:

  • Radiopharmaceuticals
  • Tomographic imaging,
  • Radiation physics
  • Human anatomy

2. Earn the Required Certification

There are two national certification exams you must take after completing your education.

They are hosted by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) and Nuclear Medicine Technologist Certification Board (NMTCB) and you must pass at least one of these exams to work as a nuclear medicine technician; some professionals choose to acquire both credentials to improve employment prospects. The ARRT exam is a 4 hour test that is compiled of 200 questions.

It has multiple choice, short answer, negatively worded, combined response, select multiple, illustration, hot-spot, sorted list, and video questions.

The NMTCB test is a computer adaptive test that gauges your knowledge of the following: radiation Safety, instrumentation, clinical procedures, and radiopharmacy.