In a post on its website today, the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI) stated that it has submitted a proposal to the US government to recognize healthcare technology management as a professional field.  It has also requested official recognition of the job titles “Clinical Engineer” and “Clinical Systems Engineer.”

AAMI’s proposal came in response to a Federal Register notice issued by the US Office of Management and Budget (OMB) on May 22, 2014. In the notice, the OMB requested comments on potential revisions to the job categories to be listed in the 2018 edition of its Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) Manual. The comments period closed on July 21.

In its proposal, AAMI urged that “Healthcare Technology Management—Engineers” be listed as a “detailed occupation” under SOC category 17, “Architecture and Engineering Occupations.” Within that new detailed occupation, AAMI proposed the inclusion of two job titles not currently listed anywhere within the SOC—clinical engineer and clinical systems engineer.

AAMI also requested that the existing detailed occupation currently listed as “Medical Equipment Repairers” be renamed “Healthcare Technology Management—Technicians” and moved to category 17. It is currently listed in category 49, “Installation, Maintenance,and Repair Occupations.”

Titles that would be moved include “biomedical equipment technician,” “BMET,” and “certified biomedical equipment technician.” Other job titles within that occupation, the group said, should be renamed as well. The job title “Durable Medical Equipment Repairer,” for instance, would become “Durable Medical Equipment Technician,” and “Radiology Equipment Servicer” would become “Radiology Equipment Specialist.”

In its proposal, AAMI offered three reasons for its proposed changes:

1) To eliminate “confusion and misunderstanding about the current classification,”
2) To reflect the growth and change in healthcare technology occupations, and
3) To correspond with actual job titles used in the field.

According to the OMB, the “review and possible revision of the 2010 SOC is intended to be completed by the end of 2016 and then released to begin use in reference year 2018.”

For more detail, download AAMI’s proposal (PDF).