Radiology administrators plan, direct, and coordinate administrative activities for imaging departments in a variety of settings, including hospitals, medical centers, imaging centers, and multi-specialty physician offices or clinics.
By conducting studies and implementing changes, they improve the internal operations of their departments. They advise their staff and supervisors on administrative changes, and direct and coordinate personnel activities in their departments. Radiology administrators assist the facility’s administration in preparation of department budgets. Some radiology administrators also conduct classes and provide training materials to assist in student training programs. They recommend cost saving processes and hospital supply changes to affect the economy of department operations. Additionally, they may interpret, prepare, and distribute statistical data regarding department operations.
Radiology Administrator Areas of Responsibility
The following list details likely areas of responsibility:
- Staff and oversee technologists, supervisors, film librarians, etc.
- Oversee Radiology Information Systems (RIS)
- Oversee Asset Management and ensure that equipment, services, and products meet current needs and are ready for use
- Oversee the business side of radiology, including but not limited to: budgeting, revenue projection, billing, and compliance
- Oversee film library, ensuring films and/or digital images are accessible and maintained in accordance with state and federal laws
- Project Management
Educational Background & Educational Opportunities for Radiology Administrators
Many of today’s radiology administrators began as staff technologists and moved up via interim management opportunities to assume full-time management authority. Many hold an associate’s degree in an imaging science from a community college. Some have a bachelor’s degree in radiologic sciences, health science, business or another related subject and some administrators also hold a Master’s degree, particularly a Master of Business Administration (MBA) or a Master of Health Administration (MHA).
In order to stay up to date with current compliance requirements and advances in technology affecting the radiology profession, as well as to maintain certifications, radiology administrators attend a wide variety of continuing education opportunities each year.
What is the Certified Radiology Administrator Credential?
In response to member requests, in 2002 the American Healthcare Radiology Administrators (AHRA) developed the Certified Radiology Administrator (CRA) program, a voluntary, exam-based credentialing program, the industry’s first and only credentialing program for radiology administrators. The AHRA Radiology Administration Certification Commission (RACC) governs the CRA program.
The certification exam tests knowledge in five domain content areas:
- Human Resource Management
- Asset Resource Management
- Fiscal Management
- Operations Management
- Communication and Information Management
The CRA Program works to:
- Raise the business acumen of imaging administrators
- Provide a standardized evaluation of an imaging administrator’s competence
- Enhance the status of imaging administration in the healthcare community
- Ensure appropriate recognition of expertise as identified by the certification
What is the job outlook for Radiology Administrators?
While the nation’s economy has taken a downturn over the past few years, radiology management job opportunities have remained fairly consistent. Since many administrators work their way up through the ranks, and since the nation is currently experiencing a shortage of radiological technologists, it is expected that available positions in radiology administration will continue to be plentiful as current administrators retire, switch jobs, etc.
About the American Healthcare Radiology Administrators (AHRA)
The American Healthcare Radiology Administrators is a resource and catalyst for the development of professional leadership in imaging sciences.
The AHRA was incorporated in 1973 as the “American Hospital Radiology Administrators, Inc.” In 1986, the membership voted to approve changing the name of the association to “American Healthcare Radiology Administrators,” reflecting changes in the nation’s healthcare delivery system and the association’s expanding scope.
The association was founded by Edward Cohen, Hal Magida, Robert Wagner, Tammy Waldhauser, Howard Beam, Marion O’Toole and Michael Thomas in response to a desire for educational programming and interchange geared specifically to radiology administrators, as expressed by a number of radiology administrators at the 1972 RBMA annual meeting.
In 1990, the AHRA Education Foundation (AHRA EF) was created to help provide funding for programs, projects, products and services specifically designed to promote the ongoing applied management education of radiology administrators.
AHRA provides a variety of resources and tools for radiology administrators including: a monthly members newsletter, a bi-monthly peer reviewed journal, access to an online membership directory, discounts on benchmarking data and products, access to an online list server bulletin board discussion area, and registration discounts on all conferences and seminars. Educational opportunities include AHRA’s Annual Meeting & Exposition, Electronic Imaging Conference, Coding Seminars, Audio Conferences, and a Conference for Imaging Center Administrators.
Currently AHRA has approximately 3,600 members.
To learn more about the AHRA and benefits of membership, go to www.ahraonline.org and click on watch AHRA’s video.
american healthcare radiology administrators (ahra)
490-B Boston Post Road, Suite 101
Sudbury, MA 01776
Tel: 800-334-AHRA (2472) or 978-443-7591