Critical care technologists (CCTs) make sure equipment used in the care of critically ill patients is safe and effective.
Salary range: £30,401 to £43,772
How to become a critical care technologist
You can get into this job through:
- a university course
You can apply for a training place on the 3-year NHS Healthcare Scientist Training Programme (STP). This is a combination of university and work-based training.
To apply, you’ll need an upper second class honours degree or above in a subject related to the specialist area you want to work in. Examples of acceptable subjects are physiology, pure or applied physics, engineering, biology or human biology, or sports science.
If you have a lower second class honours degree or better in any subject, along with a master’s degree that is relevant to the specialism for which you are applying, you can also be considered.
You’ll also need to find a trainee healthcare scientist job through the STP.
For all candidates, it will be useful if you have some research experience.
It could help you if you have some experience of working in a relevant environment before applying for a place on a course. Check with the course provider to see what sort of experience is preferred.
You’ll usually need:
- a degree in a relevant subject for postgraduate study
- equivalent entry requirements
- student finance for fees and living costs
- university courses and entry requirements
Volunteering and experience
Competition for places on the Scientist Training Programme is high, so it helps if you have relevant experience. Try and do some voluntary work in a hospital, and get experience of patient contact, as this role involves communicating with patients.
You’ll be employed by an NHS organisation and paid a salary while you train.
You’ll find more details about training and working in critical care science and technology from Health Careers.
What it takes
Skills and knowledge
- customer service skills
- to be thorough and pay attention to detail
- the ability to work well with others
- the ability to work well with your hands
- the ability to work on your own
- the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
- physical skills like movement, coordination, dexterity and grace
- sensitivity and understanding
- to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently
What you’ll do
Your day-to-day duties could include:
- setting up equipment, connecting it to patients and monitoring the machinery
- carrying out maintenance checks and cleaning of intensive care equipment and bedside technical support
- decontaminating machinery
- advising and training medical staff on the use of equipment
- negotiating with medical sales representatives
- routine administration tasks
- managing the on-call rotas and work of other staff
- researching, developing, assessing and introducing new treatments and technologies
You could work in an NHS or private hospital.
Your working environment may be emotionally demanding.
You may need to wear protective clothing.
Career path and progression
With experience, you could progress to lead CCT.
You could move into a specialist field of critical care like liver and transplant work, cardiology, neurophysiology, burns, premature baby units and respiratory physiology.