Looking for a Sonography job?
There is currently a shortage of Sonographers in the United Kingdom.
This is ideal for any Sonographer wishing to enter
locum employment within Ultrasound / Sonography, as it
means a larger number of placements to choose from.
With wage rates between £26.50 & £39.13 per hour,
that's between £46,000 & £70,000 per year.
Am I allowed to work as a Sonographer in the UK ?
To work as a Sonographer through Sonographers Medical you must have an appropriate Ultrasound qualification and a Right To Work in the UK.
There are three basic necessities to consider in deciding whether you are able to work through Sonographers Medical, in the UK.
1. Am I entitled to Work in the UK at all ?
The UK Government has strict rules as to who is entitled to work in the UK. more..
2. Do I have the required Qualifications ?
Every profession has its own qualification requirements and you should not assume that a qualification which works in one country will necessarily suit another. Links are provided for specific Professional Organisation who will be able to provide more detailed advice, and some general guidelines are described here
Whilst there is currently no compulsory professional Sonography qualification, the UK standard examination for a Sonographer is the Post Graduate Diploma in Medical Ultrasound, or equivalent. The lesser Post Graduate Certificate in Medical Ultrasound provides recognition of ability in a more limited breadth of ultrasound techniques, e.g. Obstetrics & gynaecology or Vascular. These examinations are obtainable at many Universities, although a clinical placement in an Ultrasound unit will also be required.
These replaced the former Diploma in Medical Ultrasound, awarded by the College of Radiographers, some years ago.
Internationally, the Australasian Graduate Diploma in Medical Ultrasound is highly valued, and the South African Diploma in Medical Ultrasound is also considered approx equivalent for Sonographers. Sonographers with these qualifications do well in the UK.
Because there has historically been a variety of routes in to Vascular Technology, the speciality has generally lacked a coherent education policy. As a result Vascular Technologists may have one of a variety of qualifications.
Many Vascular Technologists hold a general Ultrasound in Medicine Diploma and have gone on to specialise. Others will have gone straight into the field with out studying Ultrasound elsewhere. In all cases, they will have a strong desire to expand their abilities in the speciality and as such may be accredited with the Society of Vascular Technicians of the UK and Northern Ireland or one of its international associates.
3. Should I be Registered with the Health Professions council?
There is mandatory State Registration for many Professions in the United Kingdom and it is not possible to obtain work without appropriate certification.
State Registration of Sonographers in the UK.
It comes as a surprise to many to learn that there is currently NO compulsory Registration of medical Sonographers in the United Kingdom.
Historically, when the Commission for Professions Supplementary to Medicine - CPSM was first established, Sonographers did not exist.
As Ultrasound developed it was performed initially predominantly be Radiologists and then gradually Radiographers were asked to take on an ever increasing role, until eventually the autonomous Sonographer was born and an examination established by the College of Radiographers as a professional qualification, the Diploma in Medical ultrasound (DMU).
Now, many Ultrasound Departments are run with little or no Radiological input, with Sonographers performing the scan, establishing the diagnosis and formulating the medical report.
Despite this development, until recently the only way into the profession was to be a practicing Radiographer, Midwife or some other Healthcare Professional, and it was considered sufficient that those individuals be licensed through their own Professional registration schemes.
A few years ago, the Diploma in Medical Ultrasound was superseded by a Post Graduate qualification, the Post Graduate Diploma (PGDip) in Medical Ultrasound. Entry to this examination is not restricted by previous profession, with the result that more and more non-registered Sonographers are qualifying and seeking employment.
The absence of State registration also means that it is perfectly legal to practice Ultrasound with NO qualification at all - and inevitably this put patients at risk.
Despite considerable pressure from Ultrasound bodies such as the British Medical Ultrasound Society (BMUS) and the United Kingdom Association of Sonographers (UKAS) and other staff groups, the idea of State Registration for Sonographers is still not being officially endorsed.
SONOGRAPHERS Medical fully supports the idea of State Registration. It is in the public interest and in the interest of every competent Sonographer in the Country.
Until it is established, we recommend that all Sonographers who can, register with an alternative Professional registration scheme. Whilst this has little impact on public safety, it does at least show, on the part of the Sonographer, a willingness to undergo peer review. We similarly recommend that Locums apply for membership with UKAS, BMUS and/or SVT(UK&NI).
Why State Registration?
It has long been recognised that the public is in a vulnerable position whilst relying on the services of a Healthcare Professional.
For this reason State Registration, through the "Council for Professions Supplementary to Medicine", was introduced for Therapeutic and Diagnostic Radiographers, as a means of ensuring that only suitably qualified and competent individuals are permitted to practice with in the United Kingdom.
After many years service, the CPSM has now officially handed over its statutory responsibilities to a new body - the Health Professions Council, Which now maintains the state register.
The HPC will review the State Registration of Practitioners regularly to ensure that only those individuals who are able to provide evidence of maintaining their professional competence through active Continual Professional Development (CPD) will remain on the list.
If you have an Ultrasound qualification from outside NZ/ Austrailia , please contact our offices , as it may be necessary to contact the National Academic Recognition Information Centre for the UK , first.
One of the primary purposes of the UK NARIC is to give information and advice on the comparability of overseas qualifications with those from the UK.
- The National Academic Recognition Information Centre for the United Kingdom is managed by ECCTIS Ltd under contract to the Department for Education and Skills (DfES).
How Much Will I Be Paid as a Sonographer?
Locum Sonographer Pay rates are no longer a National standard for any Agency.
A large number of hospitals have now entered agreements with Sonographers Medical UK to supply staff not just at a fixed charge rate but at a fixed pay rate as well. These rates vary from hospital to hospital.
In general, pay rates vary from £26.50 to £35.00 - but generally you should expect to earn about £30 per hour.
Do You Support Working Through A Contractor Company (Umbrella Company )?
Many Sonographers choose to sub-contract through SONOGRAPHERS Medical in order to take advantage of the tax advantages of working through their own limited Company.
Should I have Professional Indemnity Insurance while working in the UK as a sonographer ?
Increasingly , Sonographers are choosing to take out professional indemnity insurance to cover themselves while working in the UK . The following organizations and societies below offer indemnity insurance to Songraphers , and it is advised to check your own situation
Australasian Society for Ultrasound in Medicine www.asum.com.au
Australian Sonographers Association www.a-s-a.com.au