The American Society of Radiologic Technologists (ASRT) Wage and Salary Survey indicates that the average salaries of radiologic technologists rose by 1.7 percent in the past three years and now average $62,763.
The average remains higher than the U.S. per capita income of $42,693, but it is rising more slowly than it did when the ASRT first began tracking salaries and wages every three years. Between 2004 and 2007, average technologist compensation increased by 12.6% and between 2007 and 2010 it increased by 5.2%.
In the press release, ASRT Chief Academic Officer Myke Kudlas, M.Ed., R.T.(R)(QM), CIIP, attributed the slowing wage growth to the larger economy and not to any individual changes in imaging reimbursement. “Economic data show that wages have been stagnant for many American workers during the past few years,” he stated. “R.T.s aren’t immune to that trend, even though we saw modest gains in several medical imaging practice areas.”
Mammographers experienced the largest average gains at 8%, from a $60,263 average annual salary in 2010 to $65,101 in 2013. This also is one modality where the reimbursement picture has improved somewhat from 2010.
The two technologist disciplines that saw wage decreases in the past three years were radiation therapists and radiographers. Average compensation for radiation therapists decreased 0.7%, but it remained the highest paid discipline with an average annual salary in 2013 of $78,602. Radiographer compensation fell half a percent to $53,680.
All other disciplines received average compensation increases of 5% or less. MRI and CT technologists were practically tied at 5% and 4.9% respectively. Cardiovascular-interventional technologists got a 4.3%, followed by medical dosimetrists at 3.1%, sonographers at 2.7% and nuclear medicine technologists at 1.8%. Quality management professionals’ salaries remained flat on average.
Unsurprisingly, the highest compensation was found in areas with a high cost of living. California R.T.s had the highest annual compensation at $84,162, followed by technologists in Hawaii at $80,761. The states with the lowest base technologist salaries were West Virginia ($51,607 on average) and Alabama ($51,648 on average).
Among the 10,639 technologist who participated in the survey, 52.7% reported being either “very satisfied” or “satisfied” with their compensation. However, 42% of respondents said they were in relatively the same economic position as they were in 2010.