Biomedical engineers are those engineers who combine the knowledge of medical science and engineering for designing devices and procedures involved in health care. Read this article to know more about this job profile…
According to the BLS data, the median annual wage for biomedical engineers was $86,950 in May 2014. While the lowest 10 percent earned less than $52,680, the highest 10 percent earned more than $139,350.
Biomedical engineering is one of the expanding fields that implements medical as well as engineering laws for benefiting human health. All the devices and equipment used in hospitals and healthcare centers are nothing but inventions of biomedical engineering, including a simple sphygmomanometer that measures blood pressure and a pacemaker that regulates the heartbeat of a person. These engineers help to solve medical problems with the help of devices developed by them. Before knowing about biomedical engineer salary, let us take a look at his job description.
To become a biomedical engineer, a student has to obtain a Bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering. As mentioned earlier, a biomedical engineer applies laws and principles of biology, medicine, and engineering to develop devices that can be used for improving the health of a person or even for saving one’s life. The engineers design and construct devices that can solve various medical and health problems. They work for producing equipment that can comfort a patient suffering from a disease. Many of the diagnostic machines used for processes like Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), CT scans, X-rays, ultrasound sonography, dialysis machine, etc. are all inventions of biomedical engineering. The engineers also work on development of artificial devices that perform functions of body organs like artificial limbs, pacemakers, heart-lung machines, hip and knee replacements, etc. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the employment of biomedical engineers is projected to grow 27 percent from 2012 to 2022, much faster than the average for all occupations.
Duties of a Biomedical Engineer
- They mediate closely with doctors, therapists, and customers, and find solutions to their medical problems.
- They develop and construct new devices and equipment with the help of computer software they design.
- These engineers research thoroughly, and chalk out the effect of a medical device on the human body.
- The devices and equipment designed and developed by them can assist healthcare practitioners, and can improve the quality of the life of patients.
Factors that Determine the Salary
Biomedical engineers work like Zen masters. They are proficient in everything they do, nevertheless, when it comes to concentrating and devoting attention to one, they are there to accomplish the same. They may work in government agencies, medical schools, and hospitals. They may work towards computing software for medical pursuits. These pursuits may be enhancing the X-ray machines, or studying the pacemaker and other devices. They study the co-relation between the body functioning and the working of biological systems. Some have the magical muscle to create artificial limbs, heart valves, and oncological implants, while some center their concentration camps over subjects of stimulating tissue growth. They are also actively involved in graduating rehabilitation models on which principles of ergonomics are based. Walking aids for the physically challenged or the aged are also worked upon by them. Engineering prosthetic limbs and comprehending how the fabrication would function, as though working in normal conditions, is also looked into by them. These engineers can work in various hospitals and industries such as Medical Equipment and Supplies Manufacturing, Pharmaceutical and Medicine Manufacturing, Electro-medical and Control Instruments Manufacturing, Chemical Manufacturing, etc. Biomedical engineers working as scientists and research directors command much higher salaries. They can work with medical scientists, medical researchers, and manufacturers to address a wide range of physical disabilities. Besides, the aforementioned endeavors, biomedical engineers also participate in solving biomedical issues that require clarification and sound understanding. It is due to their multifaceted scope of thought and comprehension, these engineers continue to create new areas for them to work in. The industry for which they work, the type of employer, the specific skills they exhibit, and their experience decide their complete pay package. Now, let us see what could be the average salary of a biomedical engineer.
With an increased awareness of health issues and need for sophisticated medical equipment, biomedical engineers are in great demand these days. According to the BLS survey, about 5,200 new jobs will be created over the 10-year period of 2012-2022. The survey shows that:
- The average annual earning of a biomedical engineer in the year 2014 was $91,760.
- Biomedical engineers who worked in ‘Pharmaceutical and Medicine Manufacturing’ and ‘Electronic and Precision Equipment Repair and Maintenance’ industries earned almost $82,000 to $90,000 p.a.
- The average salaries of the engineers who worked in ‘Navigational, Measuring, Electromedical, and Control Instruments Manufacturing’ and ‘Medical Equipment and Supplies Manufacturing’ industries were about $95,000 p.a.
- Those who obtain Master’s degree earn almost $10,000 more than those who acquire Bachelor’s degree.
- The engineers who worked in ‘Scientific Research and Development Services’ earned almost $103,030 p.a.
- Experienced engineers who worked in the offices of physicians and in basic chemical manufacturing companies earned about $104,400.
- States like California and Massachusetts showed the highest employment level in this occupation.
- The annual mean salary of those working in Minnesota was $112,740. Minnesota was found to be the top paying state for this occupation.
- According to the payscale data, a mid-career Biomedical Engineer earns an average salary of $75,849 per year.
- For an entry-level biomedical engineer, the median salary can be $60,748 per year.
- The entry-level salary (with bonus and profit sharing) range is $43,812 – $86,922.
The aforementioned figures of biomedical engineer salary are approximate, and may differ depending on certain factors such as his/her level of education, specialization, experience, industry, company size, location, bonus, and profit sharing, etc.