Biomedical Equipment Technician Job Facts

A biomedical equipment technician is an expert in biomedical equipment and systems. The term "biomedical equipment technician" encompasses a large variety of roles. Across the industry, technicians use literally thousands of different types of advanced equipment in hospitals, clinics and various cosmetic and therapeutic businesses.

The Work Environment for a Biomedical Equipment Technician

A biomedical equipment technician will usually work for a hospital or manufacturer. Biomedical technicians usually work within technological streams such as these:

  • Electronics
  • Electrical
  • Biomedical equipment
  • Anesthesiology.

 

The work environment can vary considerably, from repair to maintenance, installation, calibration and fine-tuning of complex equipment. A biomedical equipment technician must also keep records of all aspects of the work (for audit purposes and for insurance and other issues) and maintain a complete technical record.

This is often a high-pressure work environment. A typical biomedical technician's day will operate on a schedule, much like a tradesman's schedule, usually full of separate jobs. The nature of the work inevitably includes time issues, where complex repairs are involved or equipment is needed in a hurry.

Problems can be as complex as the equpiment. A repair job may involve major parts, replacements or system issues which involve multiple medical functions. The technician may analyze a multimillion dollar suite of equipment in depth. In senior management roles, biomedical technicians are responsible for maintaining the medical equipment of whole hospitals.

In this field, you will face a continuous demand for high standards of performance. A biomedical equipment technician must liaise and work with medical professionals; as a result, the work requires an understanding of the issues and needs of the doctors, anesthetists, nurses and imaging specialists who are the primary operators of these life-saving machines. In some cases, technicians must also act as training instructors and advisers for staff.

Salary for a Biomedical Equipment Technician

Earnings vary considerably, depending on type of technical work done, qualifications and job status.

Work Schedule for a Biomedical Equipment Technician

A biomedical technician will usually work scheduled shifts. The employer may also required technicians to be on-call for emergencies.

Career Advancement

Considerable job mobility exists in all streams of biomedical technology. You can expect to see an ongoing increase in demand for skilled technicians across the health sector.

Career advancement may take several forms:

  • Qualifications: Biomedical technicians can achieve considerable career progress directly through qualifications. Like many technical and engineering careers, career advancement for a technician comes through systems qualifications, certifications and proficiencies. 
  • Promotional: This is a job-based progression, but it includes considerable career value in terms of roles like supervision, training and systems services. Because these are managerial roles, they may also include additional management qualifications.
  • Specialists: Specialization has direct career advantages in some areas like electronics and anesthesiology. These are high-value roles in which technicians can operate across multiple areas of biomedical technology, including business options, such as research, consultancies, contracting and academia.
  • Training: This is an emerging career path, created by market demand. It is a good career option for a senior biomedical equipment technician.