The EKG Technician Path - First Steps & What to Expect
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Do you like interacting with people? How about working with advanced, high-tech equipment? If you answered “yes” to both questions, then a career as an electrocardiogram (EKG) technician might be for you. This article will provide you with information about how to become an EKG technician.
An EKG technician is responsible for operating an electrocardiograph. This machine monitors the electrical activity in the heart. EKG technicians play a vital role in helping to diagnose life-threatening heart conditions. The average beginning salary for a certified EKG technician is $33,500.
The healthcare profession is quickly growing. Available positions for EKG technicians are expected to grow by 10% over the next 10 years, meaning now is a good time to begin the certification process.
How to Get Certified
To get certified you must be at least 18 years of age and have a high school degree or the equivalent. If you meet these requirements, you can apply to an EKG program.
MedCerts offers an online, 11-week EKG certification program. Upon completing this program, you’ll receive two certifications:
Customer Service Certified (CSC): Customer service skills are vital in medical practices. A patient with a potential heart condition is often scared and stressed. It's important these patients are calm to prevent aggravating their heart condition. Employers need technicians that understand how to deal with patients in high-stress situations.
The National Healthcare Association (NHA) administers the certification exam. The MedCerts program works with the NHA to ensure you are prepared for their exam. The NHA is nationally recognized and accredited; recipients of their certifications are recognized as Nationally Certified Healthcare professionals.
The MedCerts program only admits students with access to a healthcare facility and who are therefore able to meet the clinical requirement. During the Certified EKG Technician Exam, you will need to be able to complete 10 EKGs on live people. Since MedCerts is online, live clinics are not provided through this program and must be obtained by the student.
Skills you can expect to gain while completing this program are:
Explaining blood pressure monitoring to patients
Using EKG machines, Holter monitors, and stress tests
Understanding, recognizing and reporting cardiac rhythm, arrhythmias and artifacts
Assisting cardiologists with diagnostic testing
Preparing patients for Holter monitoring and stress tests
Payment Options and Funding
Tuition for the MedCerts Certified EKG Technician program is only $2,000 or $173 a month for 12 months. There are payment plans available in 4, 12 or 18 month increments.
There are also many federal grants and scholarships available for MedCerts programs depending on your circumstances. You can contact a workforce counselor for more information about grants and scholarships.
Begin by taking the Virtual Advisor Career Quiz on the MedCerts website. This quiz is not required, but it will provide you with a personalized report to help determine what career training is best for you. You can also view the EKG Technician program page on MedCerts website or contact one of their expert Education Consultants for more information.