How to Become an EKG Technician in Florida
The electrocardiograph (EKG) machine tracks the rhythm of the heart to determine important health information. EKG technicians are the medical professionals who connect electrical pads from the EKG machine to a patient to capture the heart’s electrical signals. This professional also understands how to read and interpret the information the machine provides. This information is used to help doctors make medical diagnoses, so the technician is an important part of the medical team. EKG technicians are essential medical professionals who can find job opportunities in Florida and across the nation.
Requirements for Becoming an EKG Technician in Florida
Florida does not have training, licensing or certification requirements for EKG technicians. Nonetheless, employers may expect certain qualifications, which could also improve opportunities for job growth and pay raises. If you choose to get certified through a national certifying body, you could choose from the National Healthcareer Association (NHA), the American Society of Phlebotomy Technicians or others.
Training and Education in Florida
While it’s not required in the state of Florida, an EKG training program could help you stand apart from other candidates and improve your career growth opportunities. In-person and online training programs are available, and you may find training through career colleges and community colleges. Some programs provide a certificate of completion from the school, while others prepare you for EKG certification through an established certifying body.
These are some of the EKG educational programs in Florida:
- Florida National University—The Patient Care Technician certification program includes classroom training with an EKG introduction and education on anatomy, physiology, medical terminology and other medical topics. The program requires 120 hours of clinical practice that includes a focus on EKGs. Campuses are in Miami and Hialeah.
- Southern Technical Institute—This EKG technician test prep training course prepares you to take the National Healthcareer Association (NHA) exam to become a certified EKG technician. The course teaches EKG terminology, rhythm, interpretation and other medical topics. The school has campuses in Pinellas Park, Orlando and Tavares.
- McFatter Technical College—The electrocardiograph technology program combines online schooling with lab work. It teaches about theory and skills to track heart activity. The program covers 465 hours over five months and can result in you becoming a certified EKG technician (CET). This program is part of the Broward County public schools.
Career Outlook and Salary Expectations
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Florida EKG technicians made a mean annual wage of $49,340 per year as of 2018. This is an hourly rate of $23.72. Nonetheless, there is a broad range of actual wages within the state. You could expect to make less when starting out and have the potential to increase your income through experience, qualifications and different employers.
This technician role is also expected to have increasing career opportunities over time. The BLS projects a 12 percent growth rate from 2019 to 2029 for the broad group of diagnostic technologists and technicians, which includes cardiovascular tech like EKG technicians.
Working as an EKG Technician in Florida
The majority of these medical professionals work in hospitals, according to the BLS. Other employers of EKG technicians include medical labs, diagnostic labs and doctor’s offices. This tends to be a full-time position.
Working as an EKG technician puts you into an important role in the medical field. This position pays a steady wage and has a positive job outlook, without requiring the same level of schooling as a doctor or nurse. It’s easy to start working in this position in the state of Florida.