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Diagnostic medical sonographers play an integral role in the healthcare of their patients.  By using special technology, they take images of the inside of the body.  Physicians then use those images to prevent and treat disease.  Probably the most thought of function of an ultrasound technician is during a woman’s pregnancy, when they get images of the fetus to monitor its growth and health.  As with most of the medical field, the demand is growing for diagnostic medical sonographers.  Growth across the country is expected to be 44% by 2020, and employment numbers for South Carolina are predicted to be 20% greater by 2018.

Be part of this growing field by attending ultrasound technician schools in South Carolina. In a state where the typical level of education is below the national average, a degree in your chosen field will help you stand out from the competition. Start by requesting information, and then speak with a representative of the school to have your questions answered. Be prepared with what you want to discuss to make sure the school will meet your needs. If you don’t see a sonography program in your area, you might want to consider exploring one of the related programs listed below.

Connect With Schools Near You

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South Carolina Ultrasound Career Outlook

Diagnostic medical sonography is a popular career choice due to its rewarding nature, as well as the typically short educational and training period. In fact, it’s one of the highest paid professions available with just an associate’s degree. In South Carolina, the average annual wage in 2010 (the most recent data available) was $57,500, which is less than the national average of $64,400. Employment in the healthcare industry in South Carolina is looking up, and significant growth is expected in medical imaging. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that employment for ultrasound techs will increase by 20% in the decade spanning 2008 to 2018, which is much faster than average.

Accredited Sonography Schools in South Carolina

The following schools have programs that have been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP):

Greenville Technical College – Greenville, SC
Website: www.greenvilletech.com

Horry Georgetown Technical College – Conway, SC
Website: www.hgtc.edu

Certification Requirements in South Carolina

South Carolina has no specific requirements for diagnostic medical sonographers to practice in the state. However, most employers prefer or even require their ultrasound techs to carry a professional certification, so it’s something that you’ll want to consider as you begin to consider your education and career path.

The American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography (ARDMS) is the primary organization offering certification for sonographers, and you must pass one of their tests to gain their certification. South Carolina has three testing centers available, but you may find a location near you by looking in the surrounding states as well. Find the locations and their contact information on the ARDMS website at ardms.org, or by calling the testing company Pearson Vue at 1-877-258-9220.

In order to sit for the exam, you must meet one of the prerequisites that the ARDMS has set forth. Probably the most common one is to graduate from a program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP), but there are others as well. Review the list found on the ARDMS website and see which prerequisite will be the easiest for you to meet.

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Salary Outlook

Table 1 compares the average ultrasound technician salary by metropolitan area in South Carolina.

Metropolitan Area 2010 Median Salary
Augusta-Richmond County, GA-SC $54,300
Charleston-North Charleston-Summerville, SC $59,600
Charlotte-Gastonia-Rock Hill, NC-SC $60,200
Columbia, SC $53,000
Florence, SC $54,900
Greenville-Mauldin-Easley, SC $58,700
Spartanburg, SC $62,700

Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics Survey

Salaries Across Careers and Metropolitan Area, 2010 Data

There are several careers that are closely related to sonography, and Table 2 compares the average annual salary for those careers, in different metropolitan areas in South Carolina.

Metropolitan Area Ultrasound Tech Cardiovascular Tech Radiology Tech Surgical Tech
Augusta-Richmond County, GA-SC $54,300 $49,000 $47,300 $35,900
Charleston-North Charleston-Summerville, SC $59,600 $54,700 $52,200 $34,800
Charlotte-Gastonia-Rock Hill, NC-SC $60,200 $57,400 $54,800 $38,600
Columbia, SC $53,000 unavailable $49,500 $36,000
Florence, SC $54,900 $39,000 $49,800 $36,500
Greenville-Mauldin-Easley, SC $58,700 $47,700 $48,100 $34,900
Spartanburg, SC $62,700 $45,400 $47,000 $34,800
Upper Savannah South Carolina $53,600 $43,700 $46,600 $36,900

Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics Survey

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