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Ultrasound Technician Salary

By: CareerFactsheet.com- Updated: Jul 17,2012

Today’s economy has created a unique challenge for many people trying to find employment; however, one sector that continues to need qualified workers is health care. Leading the charge on this list of rewarding vocations is a career as an ultrasound technician. Even entry level positions in this field offer excellent opportunities to move up to higher-paying positions with some tenure.

With this positive outlook, it’s no wonder that the United States Department of Labor reports that a career as an ultrasound technician is expected to grow almost twenty percent faster than other medical diagnostic practitioners career paths. Right about now, you may be wondering – So how much do ultrasound technicians make?

Factors Affecting Ultrasound Technician Salaries

The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the average pay for ultrasound technicians in America is approximately $65,800. The statistics also say that the top ten percent of this professional medical career earn over $90,640, while the bottom ten percent entry-level ultrasound technicians make less than $44,950.

National Wages Summary

Location Pay Period
2011
10%
25%
Median
75%
90%
United States
Hourly
$21.61
$25.88
$31.63
$36.57
$43.58
Yearly
$44,950
$53,830
$65,800
$76,060
$90,640
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment and Wages 2011 for Diagnostic Medical Sonographers

Location

There are several variables that affect the overall pay of ultrasound technicians. Before we discuss the specific pay structure, we need to take into consideration the cost of living disproportion in the country. For example, you could probably rent two apartments in a mid-western State for the price of one apartment in New York City.

This difference in cost can also be seen in groceries, insurance, utilities and other items needed for daily living. This disparity translates to a variable pay scale in occupations throughout the country. Case in point: According to the American Society of Diagnostic Medical Sonography, an ultrasound technician working in Alabama earns a median income of approximately $53,000.00. Conversely, an ultrasound technician employed in Connecticut makes an average salary of $73,000.

Education

Another factor to consider concerning salary for ultrasound technicians is the training and education you bring to the table. Like all jobs, education plays a huge role in how competitive your resume looks to potential employers. A two-year Associates Degree from an accredited school will pay dividends for prospective ultrasound technicians.

This graph shows the salary of an ultrasound technician broken down by both the average annual and hourly pay. It does not take into account differences in the cost of living in certain regions of the country.
Annual Salaries (Low - High*)
  • Beginner (0-1 year)
  • Intermediate (1-5 yr)
  • Senior (5-10 yr)
  • Advanced (10+ yr)

$29,540 - $42,920
$38,830 - $68,350
$48,170 - $75,020
$55,450 - $90,610

Hourly Salaries (Low - High)
  • Beginner (0-1 yr)
  • Intermediate (1-5 yr)
  • Senior (5-10 yr)
  • Advanced (10+ yr)
$14.20 - $20.63
$18.67 - $32.86
$23.16 - $36.07
$26.66 - $43.56
* Denotes average figures

Where do Ultrasound Technicians Work?

Qualified ultrasound technicians are employed in a variety of settings. With the explosion of growth in this career path, opportunities exist in both rural and urban environments.

Ultrasound technicians are employed all over America in the following places:

  • Hospitals
  • Outpatient Clinics
  • Physician’s Offices
  • Public Health Facilities
  • Laboratories
  • Mobile Imaging Units

Ultimately, where an ultrasound technician works is determined by their specialty. For example, ultrasound technicians, who specialize in obstetrics, examine expectant mothers in simple settings such as doctor’s offices. On the other hand, more complex readings involving the patient’s brain or spinal cord may be done in a laboratory setting.

In each one of these locations, career advancement opportunities exist in administration, education and research. Some ultrasound technicians can also seek managerial positions, or can decide to specialize in several disciplines. With experience, education and relevant specializations comes career advancement and the added benefit of better pay.

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