When you’re looking for an Ultrasound Technician school in California, it is extremely important to find one that is accredited by the CAAHEP. The Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs is the largest accreditor in the health sciences fields. Sonography technicians with degrees from accredited institutions will have an easier time finding work and may earn a higher initial Ultrasound Technician salary.
Why is an Accredited Ultrasound Technician School Important?
The major concern with unaccredited schools is that very few of them will provide you with enough clinical experience to make you eligible to take the ARDMS exam. ARDMS is the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography. Very few, if any hospitals will even consider hiring you without having passed the ARDMS exam. Many insurance companies will not pay on claims if it is determined that a sonogram was taken by a tech that was not licensed by the ARDMS, and ultimately, holding the license demonstrates that you have surpassed a minimum level of training and experience in the field.
Without achieving enough hours of clinical experience while attending school, you will need to acquire hours by finding work with doctors or clinics that don’t require a license. The problem with this plan is that these type of jobs will not pay the kind of ultrasound technician salary that you were expecting when you chose this occupation. Instead, you will be working in mostly part time situations, for hourly rates that won’t come close to covering the cost of your education. Unless you are getting more than 20 hours per week, which is unlikely in this situation, it will take you over a year to reach the 1,000 hours required to take the ARDMS exam.
The good news is that once you have passed the ARDMS exam, it won’t matter what Ultrasound Technician School you attended, whether accredited or not. However the path to get there is much smoother if you have attended an accredited program.
The following California schools are accredited by the CAAHEP:
Charles R Drew University of Medicine & Science – Los Angeles, CA
Cypress College – Cypress, CA
Foothill College – Los Altos Hills, CA
Kaiser Permanente School of Allied Health Sciences – Richmond, CA
Loma Linda University – Loma Linda, CA
Merced College – Merced, CA
Orange Coast College – Costa Mesa, CA
Santa Barbara City College – Santa Barbara, CA
University of California San Diego Medical Center – San Diego, CA
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