Clinical technologists set up, repair and maintain complex medical equipment used in hospitals, clinics, universities and research companies. They act as a link between the customer or user and equipment supplier or manufacturer.
You could be:
working with a wide range of medical equipment; blood transfusion, incubation, blood pressure or patient monitoring systems, or medical imaging systems such as x-ray, MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) or ultrasound
carrying out fault finding, repair and maintenance, or responding to emergency callouts
supporting customers throughout the lifespan of the equipment
setting up and monitoring the early stages of newly designed equipment
training medical and other staff how to use equipment and answering technical questions
working with engineers to design or improve equipment, service and installation
maintaining records, manuals and spare parts stock
producing technical reports and reporting user feedback
dealing with manufacturers, service staff, logistics, sales and management.
The figures below are only a guide. Actual pay rates may vary, depending on:
where you work
the size of the company or organisation you work for
the demand for the job.
Salaries are typically between £23,000 and £35,000 a year. This rises to around £45,000 a year or more with experience, particularly when working with highly complex equipment like MRI and CT scanners. Many employers offer additional benefits such as life insurance, company car, bonus scheme, private health care and pension scheme.
You might work from an office, workshop, or from your home.
You will spend much of your time with customers, such as representatives or managers of hospitals, health surgeries, clinics or laboratories.
You would work around 40 hours a week. You might have to work shifts including evenings and weekends.
You could work as part of a team of engineers, covering a geographic area or special client group.
You might have to lift heavy or awkward equipment.
You would regularly attend training courses or conferences.
In most cases you would need a degree (SCQF Level 9-10) in an electrical, mechanical or building services engineering subject. You may get in with an HNC (SCQF Level 7) or HND (SCQF Level 8).
You might get in through a Modern Apprenticeship in Engineering (SCQF Level 6), which could lead to an assistant job, from where you could work your way up.
For entry to a degree course you need 4-5 Highers including Maths and Physics or a technological subject. For an HNC or HND course you will need 2-3 Highers plus some subjects at National 5.
Most employers ask for experience in healthcare or electronic systems as well as working with customers.
Certain colour vision conditions may affect entry to careers in this branch of engineering.
You will need a full driving licence.
Opportunities are with medical equipment and medical device systems manufacturers or providers, the NHS and private healthcare providers. Look for jobs in the press and on the internet, including employment agencies and job websites such as The Engineer. Individual employers also directly advertise vacancies on their websites.