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Patients who have been diagnosed with cancer are often required to undergo radiation therapy to try and destroy the cancer cells within the body. A radiation therapist is a trained individual who has the knowledge and skills to administer the radiation therapy treatment to the cancer patient. Radiation therapists often directly report to the radiation oncologist and often work within cancer clinics and hospitals. The average salary for a radiation therapist in West Virginia was approximately $70,000. Radiation therapists with more experience, certification and who go through continuing education can earn more than the average salary.
The demand for trained and certified radiation therapists is expected to increase by 25% by the year 2020. If you have a desire to become a radiation therapist within the state of West Virginia there are a few things you must do. All individuals who are interested in becoming a radiation therapist must have a high school diploma or a GED. This is necessary to enter one of the many accredited radiation therapy programs in West Virginia. All radiation therapy programs will require at least a high school diploma or a GED. Some programs may require ACT/SAT scores and general college courses such as English and biology.
There are two types of courses that you can pursue if you wish to become a radiation therapist in the state of West Virginia. The first choice of radiation therapy programs in West Virginia include ones that are aimed at helping you receive a certificate in radiation therapy. These courses last approximately a year and teach you how to handle the clinical experiences as well as the emotional aspect of becoming a radiation therapist. The second choice of radiation therapy programs available is an associate degree program. This associate degree program covers the same topics as the certificate program but goes into further details than the first program. Both programs allow you to receive certification from the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists.
All radiation therapists within the state of West Virginia must obtain certification from the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists or the ARRT. In order to qualify to take the examination required to obtain certification you must have first successfully completed one of the accredited radiation therapy programs in West Virginia. Upon completion of the program you must take and pass the examination with at least a 70% to receive your certification. Certification is required as it shows employers that you have the knowledge, skills and understanding to work in a cancer center or hospital as a radiation therapist.