How to Become a Certified Biomedical Equipment Technician
To become a certified biomedical equipment technician, there are some processes you have to pass through.
You have to meet the minimum educational requirements, attend a training and certification institution, and then acquire the necessary skills and experience, which pave way for easy job security.
Read on ….
Who is a Biomedical Equipment Technician?
A Biomedical Equipment Technician (BMET) is an electro-mechanical technologist who maintains medical equipment, and keeps them safe for medical uses.
The technician can instruct, coach, or render advice to staff members and other departmental agencies.
The reason for this may effectuate proper maintenance of medical equipment, principles, and theory of physiology, and safe clinical operations among staff.
Educational Requirements and Career Pathway
Education is very essential in biomedical equipment technology, considering the wide range of knowledge, techniques, and experience to develop in the process.
This post explores various educational requirements for those interested in becoming biomedical equipment technicians.
Some of the courses to take to get into the career include:
- Medical Vocabulary: This is a course designed mainly for learning and understanding medical terminology applicable to biomedical equipment. Studies include prefixes, suffixes, plurals, and abbreviations used in medical departments. Students learn different possible means of communicating with colleagues using the appropriate terminology or vocabulary.
- Physiology: This involves physiological principles needed for interfaces between biomedical equipment and patients. The course focuses on cells, nervous, muscular, circulatory, and respiratory systems. Students acquire knowledge needed for understanding advanced equipment technology coursework.
- Biomedical Circuits and Devices: This course gives students an understanding of the rudiments of electronics as related to equipment design and operation. It lays much emphasis on digital circuits used for amplifiers and switching.
- Biomedical Electronic Systems Basic: This course teaches basic principles of science and technology, and gives an understanding of electrodes, transducers, amplifiers, and monitoring systems. The Biomedical Electronic Systems Basic course enlightens the students on the basic knowledge of electronics needed for repairing and calibrating biomedical equipment.
- Biomedical Electronic Systems Advanced: This coursework teaches advanced studies for radiology, cardiology, and laboratories. Also included in this course are advanced methods of physical therapy, respiratory therapy, ultrasound, surgery, and nuclear medicine.
- Clinical Study/Internship: This gives students work experience at hospitals, clinics, service centers or labs. They learn how they can solve problems while doing their job.
- Hospital and Patient Safety: This coursework helps in solving equipment problem related to safety issues. The knowledge acquired helps to manage risk and maintain electrical safety.
BMET Associate Degree Programs
Most biomedical equipment technicians possess at least an associate degree before the inception of their career, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
An associate degree in biomedical system takes about a space of two years to complete. It covers computer systems in medical equipment and the principles of electronics.
The associate degree program includes lectures, studies, and full laboratory work. Also included are basic anatomy and medical terms used in communication with doctors and patients.
Some of the coursework in associate BMET degree programs are:
- Biomedical electronic
- Radiology system
- Clinical rotations
- Circuit math
BMET Bachelor’s Degree Programs
A bachelor’s degree in biomedical equipment technology (BMET) gets students ready to work as leaders and innovators in their chosen career. This time students learn to work with the medical team and help to support medical work through maintenance of equipment, software, and hardware.
The coursework in bachelor’s BMET degree programs include:
- Technological calculu
- Technology for special patient
- Technology writin
- Project plannin
- Biological chemistry
How to Obtain Biomedical Equipment Technician Certification and Training
One of the advantages of getting certified as a biomedical equipment technician is the opportunity of gaining global recognition and securing better job positions.
A certified BMET is needed more than a non-certified one because most employers believe that certification provides opportunities for technicians to gain relevant knowledge and experience of the job.
The Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI) has a certification program established and run by ACI (AAMI Credentials Institute). There are three segments of the program, namely:
- CBET (Certified Biomedical Equipment Technician
- CRES (Certified Radiology Equipment Specialist
- CLEB (Certified Laboratory Equipment Specialist)
Students of this certification program learn both theoretical and practical aspects of biomedical equipment technology. This, with further studies, helps them become experts in future.
Exam fees for ACI certification program: For members, the exam fees for a CBET, CLES or CRES program is $350, including $100 application fee. But for non-members, the fee is $400 plus $100 application fee.
To retake CBET, CLES or CRES exam, the fee is non-refundable $225 for members and $275 for non-members.
Biomedical Equipment Technician Duties and Responsibilities
If you are aspiring to work as a biomedical equipment technician, here are some of the major duties and responsibilities you may be required to perform by your employer.
- Inspecting, calibrating, operating, and repairing medical equipmen
- Working on complicated machinery, such as defibrillators, ventilators, cardiac monitors, and infusion pump
- Following instructions when working with specialized equipmen
- Performing routine checks on wheelchairs, electrical equipment, and radiological and diagnostic machines.
Where Can Biomedical Equipment Technicians Look For Employment?
To find a job as a biomedical equipment technician, you will need at least an associate degree according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
The services of BMETs are needed mostly in areas where healthcare services are in high demand.
These technicians can look for employment with healthcare stores, hospitals, clinics, medical equipment wholesale dealers, and electronic equipment repair companies.
The demand for biomedical equipment technicians is expected to increase from 2012 to 2022, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
The Average Salary of Biomedical Equipment Technicians
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the annual salary of a BMET in 2008 was $44,030.
Also, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the annual wage of a Biomedical Equipment Technician in May 2014 was $48,540, and in May 2015 it came down to $46,340.
According to Payscale.com, the median pay for biomedical equipment technicians in the United States is $20.99 per hour. Low earners make $16.00 per hour, while top earners make $29.35 hourly.