How to become a teleradiologist

Working as a teleradiologist as a full time or even part time job is very easy to get started in. You can make a career of teleradiology, or even use it as an income supplement to a day job you may have at a local hospital. The career opportunities for a teleradiologist in teleradiology abound. As a teleradiologist your salary can be close or greater than what you would make at a hospital, all while working from home.

How do you start a job as a teleradiologist with a teleradiology group?

Follow these easy steps!

  1. Become a radiologist.
  2. ???
  3. Profit!

Assuming you’re already a radiologist, step #2 is where things become tricky. You have to make yourself valuable to a potential teleradiology employer. As a teleradiologist you do that in a few ways.

Have many state licenses

By far the most important item for you to have are state licenses. The more the better. The more licenses you have, the more clients you are able to service. This not only makes it easier for a teleradiology company to service their current clients, but it also gives them a larger pool of potential clients. It’s much easier to find a new client when you have thirty states to choose from than it is when you have two.

Some state licenses are better than others. For instance, California and Florida licenses are easy to come by and most radiologists will have one or the other, usually both. This makes them less valuable. On the other hand, Texas and Louisiana licenses requires some effort to receive, and are therefor fairly rare, making them valuable.

Be willing to read plain film (X-Ray)

Don’t be a medical imaging snob. Learn to love X-Ray. CTs may pique professional interest and you may make more money per study, but good luck finding enough work to feed yourself.

Roughly %85 of medical images taken are X-Rays. That makes for a lot of studies that need to be read. As a teleradiologist you will most likely be paid a flat rate per study, your ability to make money will be directly related to the number of studies you read in one day. You simply have a better chance at receiving 200 X-Rays a day than you will ever have at reading the equivalent number of CTs or MRIs.

This isn’t a 9-5 job

That’s not really true. There are some teleradiologist jobs that are Monday through Friday 9AM – 5PM. That being said, there is an incredible need for teleradiologists in the evening or late night/early morning shifts and weekends. Everyone wants that 9-5 job, no one wants the after hours job, that leaves you an opportunity to make your niche.

That’s crazy though right? You spent 10+ years in school and countless 48 hour hospital shifts to get where you are, why the heck would you want to work nights and weekends? There is another way. Hawaii.

From the east coast of the US, the state of Hawaii has a six hour time difference. Noon in Hawaii is 6PM in New York. A smart radiologist moves to Hawaii and works 1PM – 7PM local time. That radiologist is then working 7PM – 1AM in New York. Your teleradiology employer loves you because you work the shift no one else will. You spend your free time learning how to surf. It’s a good deal.

How do you become a teleradiologist? Have many state licenses. Be willing to read 200 X-Ray studies a day. Work nights and weekends using time zones to your advantage.

That covers making yourself valuable to a potential employer, but how do you find an employer? Probably the easiest way is to do a Google search for teleradiology companies. Send your CV to everyone you find. Let them know what licenses you have and the times you are willing to work. Teleradiology companies are always looking for new radiologists.