Biomedical equipment technology associate degree program helps students develop technical skills needed to begin entry-level careers as biomedical equipment technicians. Professionals in the field repair, maintain, and test the high-tech medical equipment used in various healthcare facilities.
Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) in Biomedical Equipment Technology
Vocational schools, technical schools and community colleges offer associate degree programs in biomedical equipment technology. Through these programs, students will be provided with technical skills and medical knowledge needed for operation, adjustment, troubleshooting, repair and maintenance of medical equipment. The program requires students to work with various pieces of medical equipment including defibrillators, heart monitors, medical imaging units, and respiratory therapy devices.
Students will study electronic controls and circuits, networked computer equipment, multi-meters, and specialized software. Students can also use the program’s coursework to develop their communication skills to work effectively in clinical settings alongside other medical professionals. Students are required to have a general educational development (GED) certificate or high school diploma to be admitted in a biomedical technology associate degree program.
Program Course Topics
Course topics in a two-year associate degree program in biomedical equipment technology combines field-specific instruction with basic academic courses to provide in-depth hands-on experiences and technical training. Common course topics in this degree program include:
•Biomedical electronic system
•Physiology and human anatomy
•Electronic circuit analysis
Salary Information and Employment Outlook
Common job titles for biomedical equipment repair entry-level positions include biomedical equipment technician, biomedical equipment specialist, and field service technician. Biomedical equipment technicians’ employment is expected to grow by twenty-seven percent between 2008 and 2018, according to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS – www.bls.gov). The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that biomedical equipment technicians earned an average annual salary of $42,300, as of May 2009.
Certification Information and Continuing Education
Due to the introduction of modern medical devices and equipment as well as advances in technology, continued education is necessary for biomedical equipment repair professionals. Professional associations and medical equipment manufacturers, such as the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation usually offer opportunities for continued education.
Completion of formal training in biomedical equipment repair will qualify technicians for optional certification. Several certification programs are offered by the International Certification Commission of Clinical Engineering and Biomedical Technical (ICC). Students may select to become a CRESs (radiology equipment specialists), CLESs (laboratory equipment specialists), and CBETs (biomedical equipment technicians). Completion of an examination is required for each credential. Students are required to renew certifications every three years through completion of a prescribed amount of continued education.
In addition, earning a biomedical engineering technology bachelor degree will help advance career opportunities into managerial or supervisory positions. Additionally, advanced training in the design of biomedical equipment is provided through the undergraduate degree program.