A Registered Nurse Research Paper Example
Type of paper: Research Paper
Topic: Education, Medicine, Diagnosis, Profession, Health, Ultrasound, Patient, Nursing
Sonography, which is also known as Ultrasonography, is a diagnostic medical procedure that uses high frequency sound waves (Ultrasound) with the aim of producing dynamic visual images of organs, blood flow in the body, and tissues. The procedure is also called sonogram or ultrasound scan. In most cases, it is used in examining various parts of the body like the abdomen, breasts, female reproductive systems, the heart, and vascular diseases that can eventually lead to stroke. The type of radiation differs from that of x-rays in the sense that in sonography is radiation-free imaging modality unlike in x-rays. People who perform these procedures are mostly non-physicians who are known as sonographers and sometimes vascular technologists. Vascular technologists specialize in the testing and imaging of human blood vessels. In the field of sonography there exists different areas of specialization, which range from Abdomen, Breast, Cardiac, Obstetrics (OB) /Gynecology, Musculoskeletal, Neurosonology, and vascular technology (William, Kimura & Deshpande, 2010).
A diagnostic medical sonographer is a highly-skilled professional who uses specialized equipment to create images of organs that are inside the body. The results are then used by physicians to make a medical diagnosis. Usually, the procedure is conducted by placing a transducer against the patient’s skin near the body area to be imaged. Often, the sensor sends streams of high-frequency sound waves into the body that bounces off structures that are inside. Some of the services that provided by professionals include obtaining and recording an accurate patient history, determining the procedures to use, providing a summary of the results, and coordinating with other health care professionals in the team. Sonographers should also be knowledgeable and limit the risk from possible exposure to blood and body fluids. Some of them also have managerial and supervisory responsibility (Dubose & Baker, 2009).
The limit of authority for a sonography career varies from time to time. The most important ones include operating the ultrasound equipment that in the end produces and records images according to the physician’s directives. They also prepare and position the patient for the ultrasound exam and in the end explains how the procedure will be conducted. Sonographers observe the screen during the scan to make sure there is a satisfactory image for the long run diagnostic purposes. Another scope of practice for the sonographer is that they process and code film, video tape, prints, and pictures from the procedures and in the end complete documentation for interpretation by physicians.
The sonographer shall respect the patient’s organ structure in the body and the willingness of the patient to adhere or turndown the procedure. He/she should not reveal any information obtained from the patient and observe the regulations on privacy as required by HIPAA Act among many others. Another part of the code of ethics requires the sonographer to maintain high standards during practice; therefore, he/she shall have obtained the right sonography training before performing any diagnostics, and medically indicated ultrasound studies ordered by a licensed physician. They are also supposed to maintain standards that are professional by observing the set protocols and diagnostics criteria created. Sonographers are also required to identify with personal and legislative limits, practice in their field of practice and take responsibility for their actions, among many others. The last code of ethics for the sonographers is that they should promote professional integrity and public trust.
In the United States, sonographers are required to succeed well in the accredited education disciplines and programs. These programs, however, vary in length according to the field of interest. Accredited programs take between one and four year’s duration depending on the objectives and the degree or certificate awarded. The programs can either be for certificate level, associate level or baccalaureate level. For the programs to be pursued, however, several qualifications have to be considered. For instance, for a one-year program, applicants are expected to possess qualifications in clinically related allied health profession (Dubose & Baker, 2009)
Those applying for two-year programs, on the other hand, must be high school graduates having an educational foundation in basic science, general physics, and algebra (Ellis & Williams, 2000). In addition, practicing sonographers should exhibit skills that include social perceptiveness, critical thinking skills, and instructional skills among others. In the United States, there exists many institutions that offer diagnostic medical sonography. For example, the four-year primarily associate’s public and the four-year private not-for-profit.
The educational institutions, however, charge their programs differently. The costs are classified into tuition, accommodation and books and supplies costs. For George Washington University, the annual total cost adds up to $59,996 (Joseph, 2004). It is however distributed with tuition fee taking 93%, which is $47,343, housing cost taking $11,378 and books and supplies costing $1,275. Another example is Miami Dade College – Medical Campus, which charges $1,394.64 for in-state program and $4,806.12 for out-of-state program. The cost covers the annual undergraduate tuition and general fees. For this health care career, the degree and certification required include a Bachelor of Science degree in Diagnostic Medical Sonography and a graduate of a formal Diagnostic Medical Sonography or Cardiovascular Technology program that is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP). In addition, one should be registered with individual organizations. For instance, one should have an active certification by American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS). One should also have a current compliance with Continuing Medical Education (CME) requirement for specialty (Joseph, 2004).
Employment opportunities related to the profession are so many because it is a very demanding course. Most of the sonographers are not just found in hospitals but also in private offices, mobile ultrasound companies, and clinics. With this broad range of employment option and workplace, it is evident that sonographers are also needed with companies that manufacture ultrasound machines in order to market, and help demonstrate how the machines functions. Due to high demand of sonographers throughout the United States of America and other countries it has also led to the rise of salaries for the sonographers which has seen one diagnostic medical sonographers earning up to $65,210 that translates to about an hourly wage of $31.63.
According to The United States newspapers, very many jobs are usually advertised daily, and it is upon the qualified individuals to apply (Roger & Thomas, 2007). In matters of experience or no experience, for one to be employed as a sonography medical diagnostic he/she has to have experience for this particular period, considering the fact that integrity and code of ethic should be upheld. For one to climb the leader of success in terms of promotions and advancement he/she has to have additional educational papers or in some cases experience can lead one to climb up in terms of positions and rankings.
Professional bodies that hub the sonography medical diagnostic profession are many and varies depending on various requirements or depending on the level of education an individual has obtained. Some of them include CAAHEP Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (Siegel, 2011). It is a requirement that for students to sit for certification or registry exams, they must graduate from accredited programs. Another professional institution is JRCERT Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology. In terms of Continuing Educational Units for sonography profession, an individual is required to meet the continuing competency requirements of the CCI, which says that registrants must accrue Continuing Educational Units (CEU). To maintain active status registrants must have 36 CEUs per three-year period, 30 of which must be cardiovascular related (Roger & Thomas, 2007).
Diagnostic medical sonography is my preferred career in the field of health care. With my current education status and route of study, I will have the appropriate skills that are required to practice sonography. The knowledge in physical science and biology that I will gain through the education system in this Medical Campus of Miami Dade College would be useful in the pursuit of a career in sonography. In the coming years, my plan is to take all the educational certifications required to become a fully registered nurse in the diagnostic medical sonography field. My goal will be to apply the state-of-the-art medical technology for patient care under the sonography program. With the understanding of my self-interests, values and capabilities, I am guaranteed to perform the duties under this field. The primary strategy is to learn and review the Allied Registered Diagnostic Medical Sonographer credentials including taking the required exams for registration and licensing purposes.
Dubose, T & Baker, A. (2009). Confusion and Direction in Diagnostic Doppler Sonography. Journal of Diagnostic Medical Sonography, 25, 173.
Ellis, G & Williams, R.M. (2000). Flat and Curved Space-Times. Oxford: Oxford University
Joseph, P. (2004). Peripheral Vascular Sonography, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins,
Siegel, M. J. (2011). Pediatric Sonography. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins: Philadelphia.
Roger, C. & Thomas, W. (2007). Clinical Sonography: A Practical Guide. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins: Philadelphia.
William, J., Kimura, R. & Deshpande, N. (2010). Targeted Contrast- Enhanced Ultrasound Imaging of Tumor Angiogenesis with contrast Microbubbles Conjugated to Integrin- binding knotting peptides. Journal of Nuclear Medicine, Vol. 51 p 433-445