The frequently asked questions about Diagnostic Medical Sonographer training about sonography programs cover important topics like the best strategy for finding CAAHEP accredited sonoography programs or the program requirements. However, people are savvy in 2017 and now ask questions that reflect modern life, like school-life balance and allergies. Following are some of the not-so-common FAQs ultrasound technology students are asking about the sonography education process.
What should I wear to the clinical site?
The CAAHEP accredited sonography programs require students to wear uniforms. Usually, the cost of uniforms is separate from tuition and fees. The program staff determines the clothing considered appropriate for clinical training.
What if I get pregnant during the program?
A student normally does not have to withdraw from the sonographer training program due to pregnancy. Each program has different rules. Some require disclosure of the pregnancy, and some do not. However, common sense should rule. The student should consult a physician and verify it is appropriate to continue the program. The program policies may require the student to submit a physician letter to the sonography program director. It is also important to recognize that some programs will limit lab practices on pregnant students, but they first have to know the student is pregnant. For safety sake, disclosure of the pregnancy is recommended.
Can I talk or text on my smartphone in class or at the clinical site?
Talking or texting on a smartphone while in class or working at the clinical site is not allowed, except during breaks. Phone use is an unnecessary distraction, so medical sonographer schools require cell phones to be turned off while at class, lab or clinical site. School labs prohibit use of cell phones and tablets for safety reasons.
I have to eat regularly because of diabetes. Am I allowed to bring food into the lab or clinical site?
Students who have diabetes should plan their meals and snacks around the curriculum and clinical training work schedule. There are always breaks given throughout the day, so it is up to the student to make sure required food is easily accessible. In fact, students are usually required to stay at the clinical site during lunch and breaks. Food and drinks are banned from classroom labs for safety reasons.
I am latex sensitive. Does the program use latex or non-latex gloves?
The clinical site may use latex and/or non-latex gloves. Since students do clinical rotations, there is not a one-rule fits all. Programs address this issue in different ways. There are programs that provide non-latex gloves, but there are also programs that require the student to provide them. Clinics will likely provide latex-free gloves if the student informs the supervisor. In most cases, the sonography program will require the student to submit a physician letter verifying the latex sensitivity, and to carry latex-free gloves and emergency medication.
What if I need to miss some class or clinical training days?
Program staff recognize that emergencies occur during Diagnostic Medical Sonographer training despite all planning. They will not allow a student to miss class for non-emergency events like taking a vacation. They will work with the student as much as possible if there is a death in the family or some other type of emergency. The first step is arranging a meeting with the program counselor or director to explain the situation.
I have tattoos. Is that an issue?
Many young adults (and some older ones) are getting tattoos. Despite their popularity, tattoos are still not considered appropriate in a professional setting and especially in the healthcare setting. The ultrasound student will have to cover up the tattoos while at the clinical site. If the student has a tattoo that cannot be covered, like on the upper neck or back of the hands, it would be wise to discuss options with program staff.
These are just a few of the less common questions asked concerning Diagnostic Medical Sonographer training. Each of the Diagnostic Medical Sonographer schools has a student handbook that explains requirements for any student who wants to become a sonographer (8 steps). Read the entire handbook from first to last page because it will provide answers to most questions concerning the program and will also provide some insights into the sonography career.
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