During pregnancy, women frequently visit ultrasound technicians, also known as sonographers, who take diagnostic images of the baby using sound waves in order to track the baby’s growth and development. The salary of a baby ultrasound technician varies depending on factors such as the technician’s experience level and the type of facility in which he is employed.
The average salary of an ultrasound technician in the United States was $64,900 as of May 2010, reports the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Annual salaries were $44,900 or less for the lowest 10 percent of earners, and $88,490 or more in the 90th percentile, with the median income at $64,280 annually.
The bureau states that the highest level of employment for baby ultrasound technicians was in general medical and surgical hospitals as of 2010, where techs earned an average of $65,010 a year. The highest concentration of jobs were in medical and diagnostic laboratories, where the average income was $62,160 a year. Ultrasound technicians working in the offices of physicians earned $64,750 on average, those in outpatient care centers earned $70,440 on average, and those working in colleges, universities and professional schools earned $72,570 on average per year.
California employed the highest total number of baby ultrasound technicians as of May 2010, where the average salary was $77,260, reports the bureau. The highest concentration of ultrasound jobs was in Florida, where the technicians made a considerably lower average wage of $56,99. Massachusetts was the highest-paying state, with a salary average of $80,000 for ultrasound technicians, followed by Oregon, with an average of $79,740, and Colorado, with an average of $77,880 a year.
While the bureau reports that no states require licensure for ultrasound technicians, a technician wishing to advance in his field should pursue certification from an organization such as the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography. Another option for baby ultrasound technicians is to obtain specialty certification in all abdominal sonography, thereby increasing their marketability.