If you are thinking of becoming a med tech, you might want to know the average med tech salary. But before we take a look at how much a med tech earns, let’s first find out who exactly a med tech is. Med techs are diagnostic professionals with either a four-year bachelor’s degree or an associate degree with courses in science and clinical lab science. Their main responsibilities include collecting organic substances such as blood samples and tissue samples. They also run tests ordered by doctors and typically work in labs. With that said, if the job sounds like something that you might be interested in, here is some more information about med techs earn and the factors that affect their salary.
- What Is the Average Med Tech Salary?
- Med Tech Salary: Best Paying States
- How Much Does a Med Lab Tech Make?
- How Much Does a Certified Med Tech Earn?
- How Much Does a Nuclear Med Tech Make?
- Factors that Affect Med Tech Salary
- What Is the Future of Med Techs?
What Is the Average Med Tech Salary?
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports, the average med tech salary was $53,500 as of May 2008. According to this report, the highest paid 10% earned more than $74,680 with the lowest paid 10% earning less than $36,180 per year. However, as of May 2016, the median annual salary of med techs is $51,940 with the most inexperienced in the field earning around $39,300 per year. The salaries can go up to $66,095 per year depending on various factors such as level of experience and education.
In terms of hourly payments, the national median is 24 dollars per hour but the payments can go up to $30.75 per hour and up to $46.72 per hour for overtime work.
Med Tech Salary: Best Paying States
In terms of salary state by state, the state with the highest average med tech salary is California with an annual mean salary of around $80,180, followed by Massachusetts at $67,000 then Connecticut at $64,000, Nevada at $51,000 and finally Alaska at $47,000 per annum. The lowest paid med techs on the hand work in San Antonio and in Austin.
A Med lab tech, on the other hand, can expect a median wage of $47,092 per annum with a range usually between $41,820 to $52,357 per year. This means that 50 percent of med lab tech are expected to make less than $47,092 in U.S. In terms of hourly payments, med lab techs take home an average salary of $18.47 per hour. The pay ranges from $13.96 per hour for the lowest paid to $24.17 for the highest paid. This group’s pay is mainly influenced by the level of experience, followed by residence and the specific employer.
As of May 2016, the median annual certified med tech salary is 28,590 dollars with a range usually between $26,527-31,038 per annum. This means that 50 percent of the people who perform the job of certified med tech in the United States are expected to make less than 28,590 dollars. In terms of hourly payments, a certified med tech can expect to earn an average of 11.30 dollars per hour. These earnings range from $9.25 per hour on the lower side to $14.74 per hour on the higher side. Tenure and residence largely affect the pay for this group.
For the case of a nuclear med tech, the median nuc med tech salary as of May 2016 is $71,902 per annum with a range usually between $65,057 to $79,229 per year. This means that 50 percent of people in this career in the United States are expected to make less than $71,902. In the case of hourly payments nuclear med techs sits in the ballpark of $29.89 per hour. However, the pay generally varies between $23.52 per hour and $39.99 per hour. The residence has the largest influence on nuc med tech salary followed by tenure.
Salary levels vary depending on the industry that one enrolls in. For instance, a med tech professional working in administrative, support and waste management services is likely to take home an average of $52,370. One in educational services is likely to earn slightly better at an average of $54,130. Those in the health care and social assistance industry are reimbursed better than those in the other two industries pocketing $56,730 on average. Overall, the best paying industries are professional services, management of companies & enterprises and public administration which average $57,620, $58,890 and $61,250 respectively.
Some states pay better than others on average. One fact that stands out is that upcountry states tend to pay lower med tech salary than metropolitan ones. New Mexico, one of the lowest paying states, pays $45,570 on average while Nebraska pays slightly better at $47,720. Virgin Islands pays $39,060 while Puerto Rico gives the lowest average pay of $29,910. On the other hand, Rhode Island pays better average salaries as $61,790 per annum alongside Maryland which pays its medical clinical lab technologists $61,860. Those working in Nevada earn way better pocketing $67,550 on average. Overall, California is the best paying state with an average of $73,350 per month.
The more experienced you are, the more you are likely to earn. Going by that rule, the most inexperienced techs can expect to earn med tech salary $39,300 per annum although that figure can go up to around $66,000. The most experienced technologists earn at least 14% of the national average of $51,000 meaning the worst paid one can pocket above $58,000.
There are some employers who are known to pay better med tech salary than others. Overall, general hospitals pay in the range of $30,000 – $42,000 for beginners. The USA Army pays much better perhaps due to the special nature of their job assignments. A beginner medical laboratory technician working for the US Army pockets anything between $37,000 and $50,000. The Veterans Administration is yet another top employer of people with this profession and they offer an average of $36,000 – $49,000 per year. The best-paying employer overall is the US Navy which pays in the range of $39,000 – $71,000 in med tech salary. Other top employers known for hiring a considerable number of medical lab technicians are Idexx Laboratories Inc. ($34,000 – $52,000), Mercy Hospital ($31,000 – $42,000) and the Laboratory Corporation of America ($32,000 – $46,000).
- Hourly Wage
Employers adjust their hourly wage rates based on factors such as nature of work, cost of living and level of experience. For instance, a med tech with 16 years of experience working in Southeast Virginia pockets about $21.50 per hour. California offers even better hourly rates for licensed medical technologists at $32.00 per hour. A med tech working in a reference lab in Chicago can pocket $19.50 per hour. Kaiser Permanente seems to offer the best hourly wage rates paying up to $36.00 an hour for skilled technologists.
For every 7 med techs who retire only 2 wait to take their places yet the US healthcare bill is likely to increase the number of patients going forward. Moreover, if you look closely, you will realize that about 70% of medical decisions made by physicians heavily rely on tests conducted by med techs in a lab. As such going forward, demand for these professional is going to rise both due to a growing health sector and reduction in a number of practicing professionals. Training schools are churning out fewer techs against growing demand thereby creating a sort of a time bomb. In a nutshell, this is one of the few career fields where the short and long term projections look pretty promising. But does that translate to good med tech salary?
On the flipside, though, due to the highly demanding nature of this job the rate of career burn-out is expected to rise going forward. Working hours tend to be long and shift work can really push the professional to the limits. There is also a widespread misconception that med techs are high school trained and hence there are bottlenecks when one tries to climb the corporate ladder.
Generally, the major interest of many successful people who take up this career is not in the med tech salary levels but rather in helping patients overcome ailments. For example, a technologist who focuses in radiology aims to help physicians give a precise diagnosis to a patient by performing X-ray. Another specialty field that demands one’s total commitment is the cardiovascular technology one. A med tech interested in this career focuses more on things like echocardiography, cardiology, and vascular technology.
So beyond the figures of med tech salary, there is a lot one requires doing in order to excel in this career. The most important quality of a successful med tech is the commitment to working under tight schedule performing demanding tasks that improve the quality of health care services.