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There exists a common tendency to believe that radiologists make MUCH money... And this is the main reason why so many people choose this profession. So, how much does a radiologist make? Is radiologist salary really so high? If these are the questions you would like to know the answers to, go on reading.

Radiologist Career

How to become a radiologist is what many people would like to know, but far not all of them realize that this is the medical sphere that is tough to get in. However, to begin with, there are lots of steps one should undergo to become a real professional, and the choice of a med school is only one of them.

You will have to complete 4 years of studying at a medical school and 4 more years of a special undergraduate program from the college that has the accreditation. Computer and analytical skills are the basic features you are to have.

After the 4-year college program, radiology residency is another step to take. As a rule, it spans over 4 years and requires extensive radiology. Obtaining the needed skills and gaining the required knowledge you will have to pass the licensing examination, before starting the practice. If you succeed in covering the program, you will not face any problems in passing the exam, as it normally covers the subjects you've studied thoroughly: physics, pathophysiology, anatomy and diagnostic radiology.

Get ready to take one more exam that is focused on your communication skills, clinical training essentials and ethics, radiology essentials and preventing accuracies. Now you understand that the road of becoming a real professional is quite tough.

What Does a Radiologist Do?

If you were strong enough to cover all the stages of becoming a radiologist, don't be so sure your work is going to be very easy. The task of a radiologist is to perform the disease diagnosed from the taken images. He/she uses various techniques, involving x-rays and medical imaging.

Some specialists also analyze the problem of a patient and determine the required treatment. Normally, the number of duties influences the radiologist salary. One can make about $85,000 per year. BUT (!) one should also understand that the sum usually depends on departments and fields.

Recently, the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics has reported that there are definite sums of money a specialist can expect working in this or that sphere, meaning that education and specific job setting play major roles in defining the salary you are about to expect. Here are average rates for different radiology-related jobs:

  1. Diagnostic Medical Sonographer earns around $62,000
  2. Nuclear Medicine Technologist gets $66,000 per year
  3. Radiation Therapist can earn $73,000
  4. Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technologists receive the salary that equals $54,500
  5. Diagnostic Lab Technologists ear nearly $55,000

So, "how much does a radiologist make" is not the question with a single answer, as salaries vary among various types of fields that are associated within radiology. However, the middle average salary is rather high, though it varies because of different factors. Besides, there is a great difference between pediatric radiologists, radiology nurses and assistants, radiologist technician salary and that of an MD.

The starting salary varies from $35,000 to $140,000 per year. The difference is really huge and is formed by such factors as location, benefits, gender, education and whether this is a full- or a part-time job.

Salary Ranges: Influence of Experience

Radiologists are regarded to be the highest-paid specialists in the medical field. Their income is pretty high and can even reach the point of $600,000, but it is greatly affected by years of experience:

  • 0 - 1 year - $80,000 - $100,000
  • 2 - 5 years - $150,000 - $300,000
  • 6 - 10 years - $350,000 - $500,000
  • more than 10 years - $500,000 + ...

In case you are just about to start your career, you can count on the annual salary of $90,000. If you choose a private sector, the salary can be $100,000. If you have found the place at a local government institute, you will make a little bit less than $90,000 per year.

Radiologists with the experience of a little bit more than 5 years can expect the average annual salary to be about $345,000. Those, who work between 6 and 12 years, have a chance of making $422,500.

Salary Ranges: Influence of Location

The geographical position of the job plays one of the essential parts in defining one's salary. The location depends on the salary packet in the following way: those, who work in rural areas, get much lower salaries than those, who were lucky enough to find a job in urban places. If you are an experienced radiologist, view the list of states, offering the highest wages and find out how much does a radiologist make in these cities/states:

  • New York - $470,000
  • California - $450,000
  • Texas - $390,000
  • Alabama - $370,000
  • Virginia - $167,000
  • Mississippi - $105,000
  • District of Columbia and West Virginia - $103,000

So, geography is a rather powerful factor, as you see. If you are aiming at making more money, look for the job in the South. The western part of the USA offers a median salary of $460,000, which is not that bad. The East is ready to pay $445,000.

Other cities with the population of 50,000 to 250,000 people pay the salary of $470,000 per year. Cities with the population more than a million people offer more than 500,000, and the lowest payment equals $450,000.

However, it is important to remember that a radiologist salary increases with demand. When the place desperately needs professionals, be sure that you will earn more than you would at the place highly-coveted by other applicants.

What about an interventional radiologist salary? Well, those people, who choose to undergo a few extra years of training in ultrasound methods and fluoroscopy get higher salaries than diagnostic radiologists. This is why career advancement is highly important for those, who would like to earn more than others. There is always a chance to be promoted to managerial positions and thus earn more. At times the salary can even cross the mark of $700,000.

Salary Ranges: Influence of Education

If you applied to a medical school that is highly recognized in medical circles, be sure that you will earn more than others. Less known and evening schools will provide proper education, but they won't guarantee a comparatively higher salary.

Choose better training opportunities to have a competitive salary. If you complete the training successfully, you are going to be assigned to a great number of tasks to accomplish. Don't forget to take additional courses and trainings even while working. The better results you have and the more skills you've gained, the more tasks you get. The number of tasks influences your income.

Salary Ranges: Influence of Private Practice

If you have a private practice, be sure that your income will be much higher. At first you will get less, but after drawing new patients to your practice you will see the changes. To begin with, you will earn at least $160,000.

If you choose working in public hospitals, you will make less money:

  1. diagnostic radiologist - $79,000
  2. radiology tech - $80,000
  3. imaging radiologist will come up to $100,000
  4. Breast Imaging Radiologist - $162,000
  5. Physician Radiologist - $162,000
  6. MSK Radiologist - $235,000

In case you were lucky enough to get a job in a private sector hospital, you have all chances to make nearly $600,000 yearly (being a radiologist). An interventional radiologist earns up to around $560,000.

Salary Ranges: Influence of the Medical Field

In case you have recently decided to become a radiologist technician, you are to know that the radiologist technician salary is not high. The minimum you can make per year is $54,000; the maximal sum reaches the point of $77,500.

Some students choose the shortest way and become assistants, as studying lasts for 2 years only. Well, radiologist assistant salary is rather promising, and you can get good money if you go to high school, study at a medical school, and complete 2 years of study of radiology and take the exam. In this case, the average salary ranges from $95,000 to $102,000. However, it is also possible to bring this mark to the maximum - $ 112,000 (experience + hard work + diligence).

According to the latest information, the hourly rate from the annual salary of an average radiologist is about $140.

Does the Salary Depend on Gender?

Yes, it does. The tendency is such that in the medical field (regardless of the branch) females are paid comparatively less than males. If a female radiologist works full-time and improves her knowledge and skills, attending additional courses and trainings, she can earn about $371,000 per year. Working in the same field, men can easily get a yearly salary that equals $400,000, attending no classes.

BUT don't rush to blame rules or men. Everything has its own reason. The difference in salary is greatly affected by the benefits that all the females get in terms of their maternity leaves.

Besides, there is nothing you should worry about, because rather soon the projected salary scale is going to rise in some states of America. By the way, additional commission and bonuses are going to be included as well.

By the way, working more hours per week you will make more money. This is a great option more for men than for women and this is one of the reasons why men can make more money.

What's the Salary of a Radiologist Intern?

The salary of an intern depends on the type and location of the institution he works at. Normally, all the residents work at public or university hospitals, but there are rare cases, when they work in specialty clinics.

Their salaries vary from $45,000 and up to $60,000 yearly. The first year intern makes around $50,000, whereas the fourth year resident earns nearly $56,000. Those, who choose fellowships that follow the fourth year, get up to $60,000 (the maximal sum is $63,000).

What's the Salary for a Bachelor in Radiology?

As we've mentioned, the radiologist education is one of the crucial factors that define the amount of salary one is about to make. To tell the truth, obtaining the Bachelor's degree one can earn a pretty nice sum of money per year, which, by the way, doesn't differ much from the one received by an M.D.

The salary for specialists with a Bachelor's degree is mainly influenced by the location of their jobs. Why does the location play a great role? The thing is the standard of living in the area, as well as the demand for the service is always crucial. Those people, who choose to work in large cities, have a chance to earn more than those, who have positions in rural areas.

For example, West Virginia is known for the highest concentration of radiologic technicians and comparatively low standards of living. In case with this area an average radiologist gets not more than $42,000 per year. And in Massachusetts radiologists make $68,500 yearly, due to higher standards of living.

The type of the industry or the employer is also important. The salaries are affected by the business and organization the radiologists are indulged into. Surgical and general medical hospitals are the commonest employers for radiologists. All they can offer is $55,000 per year, which is, by the way, $5,000 higher than the level of the national mean wage ($50,800 per year).

If you are aiming at getting the highest average paying position, look for vacancies offered by development and scientific research companies and various organizations. They guarantee the middle average sum of $ 65,000 yearly.

The type of job the radiologist performs and his position also play one of the most essential roles. A Bachelor's degree ensures one can take any position, as such programs are well-known for preparing individuals for various job opportunities. Improving one's education, an average radiologist may quite easily reach the highest paid positions: MRI technicians make around $62,000 per year, and ultrasound technicians earn $68,000.

This makes many radiologists with the Bachelor's degree aim at becoming fully licensed radiologists M.D. and gets $360,000 a year.

So, you may specialize or become an assistant, opt for a private practice or choose the place at a public hospital, work in an urban area, or choose countryside opportunities. BUT you are to understand that all these factors will influence your salary and perspectives. Make sure you really understand all the complexities of this profession and are ready to cope with hard work, care for patients' health and help their relatives believe everything's going to be fine.

How much does a radiologist make? The final answer depends on you and your cravings. Choose the right place, time and location. Work hard, be persistent and improve your knowledge. This will help you to earn more.