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How to become a Registered Cardiovascular Invasive Specialist

Updated on June 21, 2012
A typical Cardiac Cath Lab procedure room
A typical Cardiac Cath Lab procedure room

What is A Registered Cardiovascular Invasive Specialist?

Job Summary: Assist Cardiologists and Radiologists in the various diagnostic and interventional procedures performed in the Cardiac Cath Laboratory, Vascular Interventional Radiolgy and in special circumstances Electrophysiology. Their mission to produce high quality images for physician interpretation as well as scrubbing, circulating, and monitoring during invasive cardiovascular procedures.

First things first.

There are several ways to obtain your RCIS (Registered Cardiovascular Invasive Specialist) certification. This is the certification offered by the CCI or the Cardiac Credentialing International which is the governing body of Cardiovascular Techs. Types of programs include certificate, A.S. and B.S., though the certificate programs many times require you to already have obtained at least an Associates degree. To be qualified to sit for the RCIS test, the applicant must have completed one of these accredited types of programs. For more information on what types of classes you can expext to take I've included a link to a local college's Invasive Cardiovascular Technology page.

You have finished school, now what?

Once you have completed one of the aforementioned programs you will be eligible to sit for the RCIS exam. This exam is rigorous and typically held at a testing center where you will be provided with little more then a small white board, a marker and the computer on which you take the test. The last time I checked a score of 75% or better was required to receive your certification. Most testing facilities will provide you with an immediate result, so you typically leave the testing facility knowing you passed or failed.

Looking for a job!

Once you hold your RCIS certification you are now eligible to apply to hospitals with Cardiac cath labs/Vascular interventional radiology labs. Depending on your location will determine your salary. The starting wage at the hospital I work in which is western WA state is just over 29.00/HR. With call which is an avg for me of about 30 hours of overtime a month is a fair amount of money. These particular positions are not as well known as some of the more popular careers such as a Registered Nurse but the job outlook is on the rise.


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    • IntimatEvolution profile image

      Julie Grimes 3 years ago from Columbia, MO USA

      Glad to have this information!! It was also listed as first choice on my Google landing page. So therefore, nice work.