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A radiology director oversees the staff and handles the business operations of a medical facility’s radiology department. The field of radiology involves using diagnostic imaging such as X-rays in order to identify the location of various injuries and ailments within the body of a patient. This type of technology plays an important role in the timely diagnosis and treatment of patients, so the primary directive of any director of radiology is the maintenance of all imaging equipment and tools. Additionally, the radiology director is responsible for managing the staff and might be called upon to evaluate the qualifications of candidates for potential employment or to establish safety and personal conduct guidelines for those in his or her department. Securing the position of radiology program director requires not only prior academic achievement, but also a commitment to continuing education. The rigors and demands associated with this position are why a radiology director’s salary is one of the highest in the medical field for those in administrative positions.
The accuracy and cleanliness of imaging machines are truly matter of life or death. The radiology director must ensure that the equipment used to diagnose patients is properly calibrated and represents the most state-of-the-art, proven technology available. An imprecise reading because of faulty settings or antiquated technology can cost a medical facility large amounts of money in malpractice settlements or even cost a patient his or her life. Furthermore, with so many clients afflicted by a wide variety of conditions and diseases, a director of radiology must prescribe a detailed cleaning regimen for each machine in use. Without a delineated standard, infections might spread to other patients or even create an epidemic within the medical facility.
The radiology director also serves a managerial role as the supervisor of all of the employees of the radiology department. As a result, the director of radiology for a medical facility might have the power to hire and terminate staff members. He or she might also be responsible for organizing training seminars and ensuring that employees adhere to the productivity, behavioral or hygiene standards established by the department or medical facility as a whole.
Most medical facilities seeking a radiology director require a four-year degree based in diagnostic imaging or health care administration as well as a master’s degree. Experience is also a vital factor. Most directors of radiology have between eight and 10 years of experience working as a radiographer or in a related position. Technology is constantly being developed in the medical field, so the completion of continuing education courses is a prerequisite and ongoing requirement of the position.