All Guts, No Glory?

D01a.jpg (12477 bytes)Kelly Stephens, Editor

When you do your job well, no one notices. That’s how you know you’ve done a good job. Such is the life of a biomedical equipment technician. All guts, no glory—or so it would seem.

You labor day and sometimes night performing scheduled preventive maintenance on stacks of defibrillators, heart monitors, transfusion pumps, etc, all while taking repair calls. And when your performance is at its peak, the hospital busily passes on around you—possibly even unaware of your existence, according to some.

“The first time I heard of [biomedical equipment service and repair], I was picking out my job for the Army Reserve. Since then, I have run into many people who did not know this job existed, who never thought about medical equipment breaking down,” says Robert Korte, BMET 1 at SSM Health Care, St Louis, Mo.

Luckily, gaining recognition is not why most of you work with medical equipment. You do it because you love it—because each day is different, because you enjoy being challenged to continually update your skills as increasingly technical equipment emerges, and because whether anyone notices or not, you’re making a difference, and you know it.

“I may not be that nurse who uses the defibrillator to bring back a kid’s dying grandfather or the technician who shows a young couple their first child on an ultrasound, but I know that I helped,” Korte says.

As you strive diligently each day to satisfy your own high standards and to keep hospital equipment running smoothly, it can be frustrating, though, if you feel that you are not being compensated appropriately for your efforts.

24×7’s annual compensation survey offers you the chance to compare your salary and benefits packages to those being offered across the nation. Last year, more than three times as many people than in years past filled out our survey. Thanks to your responses, the results, which were published in the December 2004 issue, featured a wealth of data—like which regions tend to offer higher salaries and what type of perks you receive in addition to wages.

Help make the 2005 compensation survey even more useful by participating! The more responses we get, the more representative the survey may be of your actual compensation packages. Fill out the questionnaire at before September 15, 2005. 24×7 will use the data, not your name, so make sure to also share your opinions about the state of the profession, your satisfaction with your compensation and your workload, and how you view your job.

Meanwhile, the next time the hospital appears to be bustling on effortlessly around you, not seeming to notice the consequences of your toils, remember that it is you who affords it the luxury to do so.

Kelly Stephens, Editor