2015 Proposed Entry Level Requirements for Nuclear Medicine Technologists Society of Nuclear Medicine Technologist Section February 2006
Entry-Level Educational Requirements Resolution Passed by SNMTS June 2005 • “The Society of Nuclear Medicine Technologist Section proposes that by 2015, education leading to the baccalaureate degree become the standard for entry level technologists.”
Educational Summit - Nov. 11-13, 2005 • 24 representatives from 8 organizations and each type of educational program were in attendance • - SNMTS - ASRT - Certificate Programs • -NMTCB - ARRT - Associate Programs • - JRCNMT - SMRT - Baccalaureate Programs • - JCAHO • Everyone was asked to bring their opinions, concerns, and questions to the table
Four Focus Areas Were Identified • Stakeholder Input • Core Curriculum • Community Outreach • Programmatic Transition
In the absence of timely communication and valid information, the void has been filled with myths and half truths regarding this proposal. We will begin the education and communication process by debunking these myths.”
Myth #1 - The entry level proposal is supported by only a small minority of individuals and was conceived with limited input from stakeholders. • Reality #1 - This proposal has been discussed for over 4 years. At the June SNM 2005 meeting the proposal was approved by the SNMTS National Council of Representative (which represents grassroots members), the SNMTS Executive Board, and the SNM Board of Directors. The input and opinions of all stakeholders has been and is important relative to this proposal.
Myth # 2 - This proposal would require all educational programs to grant a BSNMT. • Reality #2 - The SNMTS cannot require programs to grant degrees. This proposal would require that entry level NMT’s in 2015 would possess or have completed the following: • Baccalaureate Degree (BA or BS) • A core curriculum of math and science • Successful NMTCB or ARRT exam • completion
Myth #3 - Current NMT’s will be required to complete a BS/BA degree in order to continue working or remain credentialed. • Reality #3 - The proposal applies only to individuals entering the profession after 2015. It was never the intention of this proposal to mandate anyone out of a job. Jobs and educational requirements of currently practicing technologists will not be affected.
Myth #4 - This proposal came about due to dissatisfaction with the education and training of current entry level technologists. • Reality #4 - This proposal is based on the increasing educational content requirements necessary to keep up with rapidly changing medical advances. It in no way is meant to imply that one type of educational training or experience is inferior/superior to another.
Myth #5 - The SNMTS is mandating this proposal to liaison organizations. • Reality #5 - The SNMTS cannot mandate any proposal to liaison organizations. The SNMTS is seeking to lead the medical community with this initiative. We feel future technologists will benefit both personally and professionally from this proposal.
Myth #6 - Stakeholders and liaison organizations have universally endorsed this proposal. • Reality #6 - Summit participation by stakeholders and liaison organizations did not constitute endorsement of this proposal. All parties are awaiting additional information and data to support this proposal.
Myth #7 - Nuclear Medicine Technologists are considered “professionals”. • Reality #7 - The federal government and society deems “professionals” according to an educational standard. That standard is the baccalaureate degree.
Myth #8 - The SNMTS is proposing that students take additional irrelevant coursework. • Reality #8 - There are currently many additional educational enhancements that should be added to existing programs. Some of these enhancements might include: PET, CT, MRI imaging, research methodology, advanced nuclear cardiology, molecular and biochemical medicine, PACS, and health care management. Educators are finding it increasing difficult to add anything to existing programs.
What’s Next? • The Entry Level Task Force will convene at the SNM Mid-Winter Meeting • The Performance and Responsibility Guidelines for a Nuclear Medicine Technologist and our Scope of Practice will be reviewed • The NMTCB Task Analysis will be looked at in relation to this proposal
Then What? • Data collection • A meeting with education coordinators at the annual meeting to allow opinions, concerns, and questions to be aired • Collaboration with liaison organizations • Communication with stakeholders
What Can You Do? • Send us an e-mail letting us know what you think • Voice your opinion to your National Council Delegate • Lend us you advise and expertise • Become involved in the process • Be a leader, not a follower