Career and Education Opportunities for Radiation Therapists in Round Rock, Texas
Radiation therapist career and educational opportunities abound in Round Rock, Texas. About 830 people are currently employed as radiation therapists in Texas. By 2016, this is expected to grow 41% to 1,170 people employed. This is better than the national trend for radiation therapists, which sees this job pool growing by about 27.1% over the next eight years. In general, radiation therapists provide radiation therapy to patients as prescribed by a radiologist according to established practices and standards.
Radiation therapists earn approximately $36 hourly or $76,480 yearly on average in Texas. Nationally they average about $35 hourly or $72,910 yearly. Earnings for radiation therapists are not quite as good as earnings in the general category of Radiology in Texas and not quite as good as general Radiology category earnings nationally. Jobs in this field include: registered radiation therapist, dosimetrist, and radiology therapist.
There is one school within twenty-five miles of Round Rock where you can study to be a radiation therapist, among thirty-four schools of higher education total in the Round Rock area. Radiation therapists usually hold an Associate's, or other 2-year degree, so you can expect to spend about two years training to become a radiation therapist if you already have a high school diploma.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Radiation Therapist
In general, radiation therapists provide radiation therapy to patients as prescribed by a radiologist according to established practices and standards. They also duties may include reviewing prescription and diagnosis; acting as liaison with physician and supportive care personnel; preparing equipment, such as immobilization, treatment, and protection devices; and maintaining records, reports, and files.
Radiation therapists maintain records, reports and files as required, including such data as radiation dosages, apparatus settings and patients' reactions. They also position patients for treatment with accuracy in line with prescription. Equally important, radiation therapists have to inspect prescription and identification. They are often called upon to follow principles of radiation protection for patients and others. They are expected to observe and reassure patients during treatment and report unusual reactions to physician or turn apparatus off if unexpected adverse reactions occur. Finally, radiation therapists administer prescribed doses of radiation to specific body parts, using radiation therapy apparatus in line with established practices and standards.
Every day, radiation therapists are expected to be able to listen to and understand others in meetings. They need to evaluate problems as they arise.
It is important for radiation therapists to conduct most treatment sessions independently, in accordance with the long-term treatment plan and under the general direction of the patient's physician. They are often called upon to check for side effects such as skin irritation, nausea and hair loss to gauge patients' reaction to treatment. They also implement appropriate follow-up care plans. They are sometimes expected to check radiation therapy apparatus to insure proper operation. Somewhat less frequently, radiation therapists are also expected to calculate actual treatment dosages delivered during each session.
Radiation therapists sometimes are asked to help in the preparation of sealed radioactive materials. They also have to be able to educate, ready and reassure patients and their families by answering questions, providing physical assistance, and reinforcing physicians' advice regarding treatment reactions and post-treatment care and store or ready the special applicators containing the radioactive substance implanted by the physician. And finally, they sometimes have to ready and construct apparatus, such as immobilization and protection devices.
Like many other jobs, radiation therapists must have exceptional integrity and be thorough and dependable.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Round Rock include:
- Dental Hygienist. Clean teeth and examine oral areas, head, and neck for signs of oral disease. May educate patients on oral hygiene, take and develop X-rays, or apply fluoride or sealants.
- Emergency Medical Technician. Assess injuries, administer emergency medical care, and extricate trapped individuals. Transport injured or sick persons to medical facilities.
- Radiological Technician. Maintain and use equipment and supplies necessary to demonstrate portions of the human body on x-ray film or fluoroscopic screen for diagnostic purposes.
- Radiology Technologist. Take x-rays and Computerized Axial Tomography (CAT or CT) scans or administer nonradioactive materials into patient's blood stream for diagnostic purposes. Includes technologists who specialize in other modalities, such as computed tomography, ultrasound, and magnetic resonance.
- Surgical Technician. Assist in operations, under the supervision of surgeons, registered nurses, or other surgical personnel. May help set up operating room, prepare and transport patients for surgery, adjust lights and equipment, pass instruments and other supplies to surgeons and surgeon's assistants, hold retractors, and help count sponges, needles, and instruments.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Radiation Therapist Training
Academy of Health Care Professions - Austin, TX
Academy of Health Care Professions, 6505 Airport Blvd, Suite 102, Austin, TX 78752-3630. Academy of Health Care Professions is a small school located in Austin, Texas. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs. It has 188 students and an admission rate of 100%. Academy of Health Care Professions has a one to two year program in Medical Radiologic Technology/Science - Radiation Therapist which graduated fifty-two students in 2008.
Nuclear Cardiology Technologist: Professional certification is a vital component of a successful career.
For more information, see the Nuclear Medicine Technology Certification Board website.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Round Rock, Texas
Round Rock is located in Williamson County, Texas. It has a population of over 104,446, which has grown by 70.8% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Round Rock, 83, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Round Rock are priced at $145,400 on average, which is well below the state average. In 2008, three hundred twenty-four new homes were constructed in Round Rock, down from seven hundred ninety-six the previous year.
The three big industries for women in Round Rock are educational services, computer and electronic products, and health care. For men, it is computer and electronic products, construction, and public administration. The average travel time to work is about 26 minutes. More than 32.9% of Round Rock residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 9.1%, is higher than the state average.
The unemployment rate in Round Rock is 6.2%, which is less than Texas's average of 8.1%.
The percentage of Round Rock residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 40.0%, is less than both the national and state average. Primera Iglesia Bautista of Round Rock Church, Round Rock Chapel Church and Round Rock Church of Christ are all churches located in Round Rock. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Southern Baptist Convention and the United Methodist Church.
Round Rock is home to the Inn at Brushy Creek and the Captain Nelson Merrell House as well as Roundrock West Park and Mesa Village Park. Visitors to Round Rock can choose from Best Western Executive Inn and Austin Marriott North for temporary stays in the area.