BMETs, or biomedical equipment technicians, are specialists in the support, maintenance, and repair of medical technology. As part of the healthcare team, they work with a wide variety of biomedical devices that diagnose, treat or assist patients.
Most BMETs work in a hospital, large medical facility or biological laboratory. Some are hired by equipment manufacturers to develop and test new devices or to work in sales. BMETs are responsible for keeping equipment in working order and they're the ones called in to troubleshoot when equipment is not functioning properly. BMETs usually hold an associate's or bachelor's degree in a field such as biomedical equipment technology.
Job Skills and Duties
BMETs enjoy the challenge of fixing mechanical devices. And as today’s medical devices become more and more integrated with computer technology, BMETs have more opportunities to work with computers and software than ever before. BMETs also need to be familiar with both electrical and electronic technology. They install, inspect, calibrate, service, and repair medical equipment of all sorts and sizes. From CT scanners to wheelchairs, from infusion pumps to heart monitors, BMETs keep important medical devices up and running.
BMETs also collaborate with medical staff. They can provide equipment training to physicians and nurses and, when new equipment is needed, they're called upon to research and evaluate the options.
Most entry-level BMETs begin with a two-year associate's degree in a field such as biomedical equipment technology or biomedical engineering electronics. Some BMETs have trained for this specialty in the military. Bachelor's degrees in medical equipment technology or medical engineering technology are available at some schools. New BMETs can expect to work as assistants for three to six months. They may be trained on each piece of equipment in a lab or facility and may also attend manufacturer training courses. Certification exams are available for graduates with two to three years of full-time experience, but aren't, yet, required by law.
Well Known Jobs Within this Field of Expertise
As BMETs gain experience, they may specialize in certain types of equipment. This may lead to a job as a radiology equipment specialist, clinical laboratory equipment specialist, electro medical equipment technician, or traveling field service engineer.
The demand for BMETs will continue to grow as medical advances and biology research result in new and more complex biomedical equipment. If your interested in medical technology, a degree in the biomedical field may be right for you.