Have the training and skills to read X-rays, but long to set your own hours and work without distractions? Consider putting your radiology career on another track -- one that has you working from a home office. Granted, you'll already have invested considerable time and expense in graduation from medical school and completing a residency program, but now that you're free to diagnose diseases and injuries by studying X-rays, and CT and MRI scans, you're in the driver's seat. It's a profession suited to outsourcing. There's no need to interact with patients in an office setting; instead, a radiologist can use a personal computer tied into a hospital or medical practice's network to view X-rays and scans, and then make their professional recommendations.
You could work as an independent contractor for a company that hires radiologists to read X-rays for medical clients, including hospitals. Imaging On Call is one such company. You could strike out on your own, courting and serving clients of your own choosing. Or you could make work-from-home arrangements a bargaining chip during your next job negotiation.
And, with an expected shortage of radiologists on the horizon, the work-at-home odds could fall in your favor. By the year 2020, the U.S. is predicted to need 4,000 more radiologists than will be available [source: Mann]. So, for those of you still considering a change in profession, there's plenty of time to finish medical school -- and expect a lucrative career to be waiting on the other end of your diploma. In 2011, a survey of more than 24,000 U.S. radiologists found their salaries were the highest of all medical specialists, about $315,000 a year [source: Medscape].
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