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Supporting Hybrid Imaging: New Accelerated Pathway Helps Technologists Fulfill CT Certification Requirements

ASNC is pleased to share exciting news for nuclear medicine technologists and their cardiac imaging labs.
As interest in hybrid nuclear/CT imaging grows, cardiac imaging teams know to turn to ASNC when encountering barriers to offering their patients state-of-the-art PET/CT or SPECT/CT imaging. A significant obstacle for many labs, especially those in private practice settings, has been state licensing laws and regulations that preclude nuclear medicine technologists from performing the CT portions of PET/CT and SPECT/CT studies. These laws and regulations vary by state but in many cases require training and certification in CT that would be difficult to complete while employed full time.

"ASNC is committed to supporting nuclear cardiology labs as they expand into hybrid nuclear/CT imaging," ASNC President Lawrence Phillips, MD, FASNC, says. "When we learned that many nuclear technologists had few viable options for obtaining the training needed to perform PET/CT and SPECT/CT studies, we went looking for solutions." 

A solution came about through conversations with educators at Chattanooga State Community College (ChSCC), who agreed with ASNC that there was an opportunity to address the evolving needs of today's nuclear medicine technologists while also helping to expand patients' access to advanced diagnostic imaging.


Accelerated Pathway CT Certificate Available Now

ChSCC has announced a streamlined certificate program that will facilitate working imaging technologists (1) receiving formal specialized education in computed tomography; (2) qualify them to take exams required by the Nuclear Medicine Technology Certification Board (NMTCB) or the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT); and (3) fulfill most states' regulatory requirements. 

Designed to consider the needs and the schedules of working technologists, the ChSCC CT Certificate program includes –
  • Three classes (16 credit hours), all available online and asynchronously, allowing students around the country to complete the program's didactic requirements around their work schedules.  
  • A clinical practicum of at least 180 hours. The ChSCC team supports each student's assignment to an appropriate clinical site for hands-on training, completes clinical competency assessments, and maintains the documentation necessary for eligibility to take NMTCB or ARRT exams.
     

CT Certificate Program 'Takes a Lot of Pressure Off of Technologists' 

“This program delivers on technologists' didactic requirements and their need for hands-on training,” says MedAxiom Care Transformation Services Vice President Jaime Warren, EdD, MBA, BHS, CNMT, NCT, who is an active ASNC member and was instrumental in ASNC's discussions with ChSCC. “Importantly, ChSCC will assist in finding a facility or a CT department for technologists to complete their required clinical rotation program. Solving the hands-on training aspect of meeting facility and state requirements takes a lot of pressure off of technologists.” 

The ChSCC CT Certificate program can be completed in just two semesters. The program also fulfills the NMTCB and ARRT exam requirement that technologists have student status, and it offers liability insurance. 

"This program addresses an important need – bridging the gap between current expertise and the new skills needed for the evolution of nuclear cardiology, ensuring our technologists are equipped to bring cutting-edge cardiac PET/CT and SPECT/CT to their communities," Dr. Phillips says. 


Improving Patients' Access to PET/CT and SPECT/CT

The value of this training opportunity starts with technologists and quickly expands to benefit their labs and the patients they serve. 

"The Chattanooga State Community College program represents a dual opportunity," Dr. Warren says. "It is both a valuable career development path for nuclear medicine technologists and a means to significantly enhance the quality of patient care through advanced cardiac PET/CT or SPECT/CT. By obtaining this training, technologists not only advance their own professional standing but also play a pivotal role in improving access to sophisticated diagnostic tools, ultimately benefiting patients with more precise and timely health assessments." 

For more information, visit the ChSCC website or email ChSCC Program Director Stacey Carter, MSHS, RT(R)(CT)(CI)(ARRT), at stacey.carter@chattanoogastate.edu

The deadline to register for ChSCC's fall 2024 semester is June 1. 

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