Southeastern initiates program in advanced diagnostic imaging
Contact: Rene Abadie
HAMMOND – A new program designed to train technologists in advanced diagnostic imaging will start at Southeastern Louisiana University in the spring 2012 semester.
The four-semester program will offer clinical tracks in either computerized tomography or magnetic resonance imaging. Graduates will earn a bachelor of science degree in health studies.
“This program has significant applications for the area’s healthcare workforce,” said Southeastern President John L. Crain. “Currently most radiologic technologists receive advanced training in these specialized modalities while on the job. The profession is now moving toward requiring more formalized training. In the not too distant future, it is likely a degree will be required, especially for individuals looking to advance into supervisory positions.”
He added that hospitals and clinics in the area are expanding facilities and services to accommodate growing patient demand and need well prepared radiologic personnel. Currently, no other university in the area is offering this type of program, he said.
Ann Carruth, interim dean of the College of Nursing and Health Sciences, said candidates for the program must be registered technologists who are certified by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) and licensed by the Louisiana State Radiologic Technology Board of Examiners. They must have completed all general education courses required of Southeastern graduates.
She explained that registered technologists generally complete a two-year associate degree or diploma program offered at various hospitals and colleges. This prepares them to work in diagnostic radiography involving x-ray and other equipment.
“The more advanced technology associated with computerized tomography and magnetic resonance imaging requires very specialized training to become competent in the field and to be prepared for national certification,” she said.
The program was developed in cooperation with North Oaks Health System in Hammond, which will also serve as one of the university’s clinical partners.
“We are eager to see the advanced imaging program develop,” said North Oaks School of Radiologic Technology Program Director Marsha J. Talbert. “The general demand for allied health programs associated with the population growth in this part of the state is strong. We are looking forward to working closely with Southeastern on this much-needed program.”
Carruth said the program will provide students with both the classroom work and clinical experience they need to be proficient in their profession, and graduates will meet national board eligibility requirements.
The program will be housed in the new College of Nursing and Health Sciences addition to the existing Kinesiology and Health Sciences Building expected to open later this fall. Area hospitals and other health care facilities will serve as sites for clinical rotations.
Carruth added that Southeastern will seek national accreditation of the program by the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology as soon as it becomes eligible.
For more information on the program, contact the College of Nursing and Health Sciences at 985-549-3772.