Become an EKG Technician in Maryland
An EKG technician is a healthcare professional who administers a test that records the electrical activity of the heart, known as an electrocardiogram or EKG. This is an important test that can reveal whether a patient has signs of heart disease.
If you become an EKG technician, you’ll set up and maintain EKG equipment, keep patients comfortable and informed and provide diagnostic results to physicians. It can be a rewarding and well-paid career.
What’s Required to Become a Maryland EKG Technician?
A high school diploma or the equivalent is the first thing you’ll need in order to prepare to become an EKG technician in Maryland. This is a requirement for admission to postsecondary schools that offer training in this field.
Since administering medical tests requires specialized skills, you’ll need to complete a certificate program or obtain an associate’s degree. You can also pursue a bachelor’s degree in order to expand your skills to include other forms of diagnostic testing. You may be required to pass a criminal background check or substance abuse testing.
EKG Technician Training in Maryland
Certificate programs for EKG technician training can usually be completed in a year or less. Associate degree programs usually take two years. Training programs typically include both classroom and clinical training. Some EKG technician training programs in Maryland include:
- Carroll Community College. Located in Westminster, MD, this community college offers an EKG Technician certificate program, which is approximately 66 hours. Training includes learning to perform EKGs, stress tests and the use of Holter monitors.
- Howard Community College. This college in Columbia, MD, offers a Cardiac Monitoring and Analysis Certificate. Classes and labs are held on campus and at clinical sites. Students who wish to obtain further education can go on to pursue an associate’s degree in Cardiovascular Technology.
- Stein Academy. This career school in Maryland offers a certificate program based on 50 hours of classroom and laboratory instruction.
Getting Certified to be an EKG Technician in Maryland
The state of Maryland doesn’t require EKG technicians to obtain licensing or certification. Most employers, however, prefer candidates who have passed a national certification exam to demonstrate knowledge of the skills needed to work in this field.
Cardiovascular Credentialing International offers a certification exam which consists of 130 multiple choice questions and takes approximately two hours to complete. Passing this certification exam earns the designation of
Certified Cardiographic Technician (CCT).
Pay and Career Job Outlook for Maryland EKG Technicians
As of August 2020, the average annual salary of cardiac technicians in Maryland was $47,954 according to Salary.com. The amount you earn can be impacted by the level of education you’ve completed, years of experience and your location. Pay typically ranges between $40,406 and $63,436 per year.
Careers in the healthcare field usually have steady job growth, and the EKG technician field is no exception. Job openings for cardiac technicians across the United States are projected to increase by 7 percent between 2018 and 2028, according to CareerOneStop. In the state of Maryland, job growth is projected to increase by as much as 14 percent between 2016 and 2026.
Working as an EKG Technician in Maryland
Working as an EKG technician requires good communication skills, especially active listening skills. You should be a detail-oriented person with good hand-eye communication. Physical stamina is important because you may have to stand for long periods of time. In some settings you may have to be available to work evenings, weekends and holidays.
There are opportunities for EKG technicians all over the state of Maryland, especially in large cities such as Baltimore and Columbia. The greatest number of opportunities can be found in hospitals, but there may also be openings in doctor’s offices, medical laboratories and outpatient care centers.