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States That Don't Require ARRT Certification

By Kenneth Hamlett


    Many states do not require licensing or ARRT exams to work in the radiology field.

     Radiologic technologists can  become certified in their  profession, although it is not  required in all states. The  American Registry of Radiologic  Technologists (ARRT) offers  certification to qualified  candidates. Many states use the  scores from the ARRT  examination to help make licensing decisions. As of May 2014, 11 states do not require licensing or ARRT certification for workers in this field.


    • Alabama does not have state-licensing or ARRT exam requirements for professionals in the radiology field.


    • Alaska does not have a state licensing requirement but does require formal training in radiologic services. Larger facilities with accreditation from the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) often do not hire applicants without ARRT certification.


    • The state of Georgia does not require licensing or the ARRT exam for radiologic technicians or operators of X-ray equipment.


    • Idaho does not require radiologic technicians to obtain licensure or pass the ARRT exam.


    • Michigan does not have licensing requirements for radiographers or those who work with X-ray equipment; however, anyone who works with mammography equipment must pass the ARRT exam or meet the standards of issuance for a certified technician through ARRT.


    • Missouri does not license or have credentialing requirements for operators of radiologic equipment.


    • Nevada operates in a similar fashion as Michigan. If a technician operates mammography equipment, she must pass the ARRT exam; otherwise, she is not subject to licensing or credential requirements.

    New Hampshire 

    • New Hampshire does not require operators of radiology equipment to obtain a license or seek credentials.

    North Carolina

    • North Carolina does not require a license or ARRT exam for operators of radiology equipment.

    North Dakota

    • North Dakota does require general diagnostic operators to pass the state, ARRT or American Chiropractic Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ACRRT) examinations. It does not require limited-use operators to pass an exam. Limited-use operators can perform chest, ribs, abdomen, podiatry, skull/sinuses, extremities and/or spine services only. Limited-use operators must complete a course on the subject and have a passing grade in the subject.

    South Dakota

    • No licensing or ARRT exam requirements exist in South Dakota for those practicing radiology. A person with 24 hours of training by a qualified instructor may perform X-rays. Dental radiographers must have at least 16 hours of training.


    To ensure patient safety and reduce radiation exposure dose during radiologic procedures, in 1977 the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation made the following recommendations:

    To ensure patient safety and reduce radiation exposure dose during radiologic procedures, in 1977 the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation made the following recommendations:

    • Reduce the number of radiographs per patient.
    • Reduce the time and intensity of exposure.
    • When fluoroscopy is not essential, use conventional radiography.
    • Use the smallest possible field size.
    • Avoid inclusion of the gonads in the primary beam.
    • Protect testicles with gonadal shields.
    • Properly train and supervise staff engaged in these examinations.

    With the passage of proposed federal legislation and state licensure laws, the public will benefit from being cared for by properly educated and certified radiologic personnel. No matter what the radiologic procedure, the technologist's detailed knowledge of anatomy, careful application of radiation and skillful operation of sophisticated medical equipment are the keys to its success. To be clinically useful, diagnostic imaging exams must be accurate. To stop invasive cancers, radiation therapy treatments must be precise.

    The current lack of uniform educational standards nationwide for operators of radiologic equipment poses a hazard to the public. State and federal standards will ensure a minimum level of education, knowledge and skill for the operators of radiologic equipment. Ultimately, they will reflect the radiologic technologist's ability to provide the highest quality of patient care.

    OSRT Members who have been to DC to lobby for Minimum Standard Educational Requirements for all delivering ionizing radiation or injecting radionuclides:

    Bart Pierce, Randy Harp, Barb Smith, Anne Warden, Susan Putnam-Hopkins, Virginia Vanderford, Susan Castanette, Peggy Keith, Thomas King and Bobbi Guzman.

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