Telemetry Technician

Critical Care Education’s EKG Technician Program will prepare you to enter to field as a Telemetry Technician

What is a Telemetry Technician

Telemetry monitoring technicians are allied health professionals who monitor heart rhythms using electrocardiographic (ECG) equipment. Telemetry is an electronic system designed to monitor a patient’s heart activity. The heart is an electrical system and the monitors pick up cardiac activity, displaying it in electrical patterns on a computer screen for medical staff to see. Different heart rhythms indicate problems or diseases of the heart and require different treatment. Telemetry technicians are trained to recognize heart rhythms.

Telemetry technicians typically work in hospitals and monitor multiple patients at computers in a dedicated room. Since a patients’ heart need be constantly monitored Telemetry Technicians may work at any time in the day or night, depending on their assigned shift. Workers in this position report directly to a lead nurse. Monitor technicians usually work full-time shifts from 8 to 10 hours and can work daytime, evening, and weekend shifts.

Telemetry Technician Duties and Responsibilities

Telemetry Technician’s provide advanced ECG monitoring while concentrating on observation of patient status through assessment of ECG strips and arrhythmia interpretation. Telemetry Technician’s recognizes problems through continuous EKG monitoring with accurate interpretation of cardiac rhythms and dysrhythmias and interval measurements; identifies probable causes, and seeks solutions to correct the problem according to established standards. Telemetry Technician’s also appropriately identifies, responds and communicates to direct patient care givers any potentially life-threatening rhythm changes and monitor alarms.

Telemetry Technician’s oversee cardiac monitoring of all patients by maintaining operation of the central monitoring station and monitoring software systems. Telemetry technicians are tasked with preparing, maintaining, and interpreting telemetry waveform data. Telemetry Technician’s are responsible to independently observe and interpret cardiac rhythms and documenting them in patient’s medical records. Other responsibilities include coordinating availability of transmitters, lead cables and other monitoring supplies and applying electrocardiography leads.

Telemetry Technician’s interaction with patients include performing electrocardiograms in multi-settings including proper electrode placement on patients using proper techniques. Telemetry Technician’s performs various procedures as directed including obtaining clear, readable six second strips, implementing cardiac monitoring orders as requested by the nurse, and reviewing cardiac monitoring orders as requested by the nurse.

Telemetry Technician’s must communicate appropriately and clearly to charge nurse, co-workers and physicians. Telemetry Technicians are responsible to appropriately respond to all monitor alarms, report changes in rate/rhythm to nurse and/or physician for urgent and/or non-urgent intervention, and document changes in rhythm and rate.

Telemetry Technicians are responsible to document EKG waveforms in the patient records by recording measurements of heart rate, PR interval and QRs on rhythm strips, identifying rhythms such as NSR, SB, ST Asytole, SVT, A-Fib, A-Flutter, and VT, and Ensuring recorded rhythm strips are mounted and placed on patient’s chart after review by the nurse.

Telemetry technician’s set-up and operates telemetry and electrocardiogram equipment for the unit and ensures monitor alarms are “on” when patient is on unit. In addition, telemetry technicians are responsible to clean cardiac monitoring equipment per infection control and bioengineering procedures. Telemetry Technicians must possess troubleshooting skills to recognize monitoring the problems, identify probable causes, and seek solutions to correct the problem.

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Telemetry Technician Job Outlook

According to BLS data, job opportunities for cardiovascular technologists and technicians across specialties is expected to grow 22% by 2024, with a 2020 median salary of $59,100, based on skills and experience. This is a faster growth than the average for all occupations.

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