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Therapeutic Radiographer

Therapeutic Radiographer

On a therapeutic radiographer apprenticeship course, you’ll help provide excellent care to patients diagnosed with cancer by delivering high-quality and accurate radiotherapy.

A therapeutic radiographer provides excellent care to cancer patients by giving high-quality and accurate radiation while considering their emotional, psychological, and physical needs throughout the stages of their cancer treatment, when they may be most vulnerable.

In this position, you will be in charge of the patient when they are recommended for radiation therapy by a cancer specialist. You will be in charge of pre-treatment preparation, such as scanning and scheduling their radiotherapy. 

Therapeutic radiographers employ the most significant degree of technical competence and patient care to treat and support adults, teenagers, and children experiencing various types of radiation. 

You will be responsible for organising, confirming, and using imaging to provide precision radiation in a compassionate and caring manner.

As an independent practitioner, you will be in charge of the patient from when they are recommended for radiation therapy by a cancer specialist until aftercare.

What you’ll learn

On a therapeutic radiographer apprenticeship course, you’ll learn to:

  • Manage risk, report and escalate safety concerns, put lessons gained into practice, and be open and honest when things go wrong in your field.
  • Maintain meticulous records of your efforts.
  • Promote and protect the interests of patients, employees, and the public in a radiation environment, and use local personal dose monitoring techniques.
  • Recognise and respond appropriately when it is necessary to share information to safeguard radiation patients or the public, in line with ethical norms, and seek help when in doubt.
  • Encourage health and well-being by offering information on how to decrease the danger of adverse radiation effects.
  • Recognise your patient advocacy obligations, act as a patient advocate when required, and offer patients or their advocates the knowledge they need to make informed choices.
  • Establish rapport with patients and colleagues by displaying practical communication skills.
  • Work within your knowledge and abilities, and delegate as necessary.
  • Demonstrate current CPD, and lifelong learning in contemporary radiation practice.
  • Make use of critical thinking.
  • Take part in clinical audits, assist with service improvement programmes, and use evidence-based research and clinical trials’ findings to inform your clinical practice.
  • Make educated decisions about whether to continue or quit radiation and escalate if necessary.
  • Assess the patients’ clinical state before surgery, use basic life-support measures, and deal safely with clinical emergencies. 
  • Use excellent communication with the patient to determine their suitability for surgery, keeping the patient’s needs in mind at all times.
  • Calculate and verify patient radiation prescriptions and associated data.
  • Evaluate and change patient settings using photographs and scans collected in compliance with local recommendations.
  • Identify and prepare the patient correctly for the required procedure and choose the equipment and a repeatable patient posture for the length of treatment, including patient accessory construction.
  • Report risks and occurrences following applicable laws, policies, and standards, and keep accurate, complete, and intelligible records and other information.
  • Reflect on and learn from clinical events and complaints, and share your findings with your colleagues.
  • Use spatial awareness and psychomotor ability to properly manage the radiotherapy equipment and the patient’s body to align anatomy with the radiation beam.
  • Recognise verbal and nonverbal indicators that show the patient may need emotional and psychological help.
  • Recognise that not all therapies are appropriate for all patients in all situations and show the ability to evaluate patients’ comprehension.
  • Reflect on and recognise one’s thoughts and feelings, and seek expert aid when dealing with potentially stressful and challenging circumstances involving patients getting treatment.
  • Recognise the many needs of cancer patients who may not be cured.
  • Prioritise the requirements of your patients and recognise when your knowledge and talents are inadequate, referring to the broader radiation support network as required.
  • Recognise verbal and behavioural indications that the patient has misunderstood the consent process, is hesitant to offer permission, or cannot agree for themselves, and refer on as required.
  • Recognise when it is time to discontinue treatment.
  • Make use of radiation information technology and computer hardware.
  • Use data protection and patient confidentiality in daily clinical practise and generate appropriate, brief, factual treatment documentation.

Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • Depending on the employer, but likely A-levels or equivalent qualifications or relevant experience.
  • Apprentices without level 2 English and maths will need to achieve this before taking the end-point assessment.

Assessment methods

The End Point Assessment comprises two distinct assessment methods: 

  • Demonstration of Professional Practice
  • Professional Discussion

Restrictions and requirements

You’ll need to:

Duration and level

  • Duration: 36 months
  • Level: 6 – Degree Apprenticeship

Apprenticeship standard

More information about the Level 6 Therapeutic Radiographer Apprenticeship standard can be found here.

Apprenticeship end point assessment

For more information about the End Point Assessment Process, please read the Institute of Apprenticeships’ information page

Updated on October 1, 2022

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