Posted on Wednesday November 11 2015 by RIG Healthcare
Radiation therapy is an area in healthcare that is constantly growing and changing. Since my graduation in 2013 I have noticed changes in techniques, patient set-ups, care instructions and so much more. Techniques such as IMRT and RapidArc have made the delivery of radiation to patients more precise, allowing us to spare more normal tissue and therefore decreasing patient side effects. Changes in patient set-ups due to better immobilization devices have allowed us to provide more patient comfort and as a result more precise treatment due to set-up stability. With increased research in treatments and side effects, care instructions for patients have given more freedom when able, and preparation instructions for the decrease in side effects. There is constantly research being conducted in many areas of radiation therapy allowing for these changes to be discovered and implemented.
One of the best decisions I ever made was moving to the United Kingdom to experience working as a therapy radiographer. As Canada doesn’t have the option of being a Locum Radiotherapist, I would highly recommend it to anybody wanting to experience radiation therapy performed in various manners. One of the major benefits of Locum radiotherapy work is learning how every department achieves the same goal while taking a very different route to get there. Although I know my basic knowledge of radiotherapy very well, I found that I grew as a radiotherapist doing locum radiotherapy work over the past year. It keeps your brain engaged, allowing it to constantly piece together your training, your experience in other departments and your current experience in your new department and how they relate. You learn to mentally overlay the procedures from each department and learn to recognize the relationships. It also allows you to work out the pros and cons from each department and bring with you this valuable knowledge to a new department, whether it be another locum radiotherapy contract or a permanent radiotherapy position. With time you also develop the important skill of quick learning. Although there is the pressure of learning the policies and procedures of a new department in a short span of time, locum radiotherapy work keeps you on your toes constantly learning and cultivating important life skills while decreasing what could some times be the monotony of working at one department.
As it may be prevalent at this point, all of my training was completed in Canada, as such I feel I bring a different perspective to locum radiotherapy work in the UK. I moved to the UK because the economy at the time of my graduation was down and work was very difficult to find. When a locum radiotherapy position was offered to me in Hull, I jumped at the opportunity and now I am still here over a year later. As I did not have any attachments to any areas of the UK when I first moved here, locum work allowed me to get an invaluable experience of the country. I’ve lived in the North and the West Midlands, but I have travelled to over 20 different cities in England alone. Now that I have decided to stay in the UK on a more permanent basis, from my travel experience in England, I can decide where I want to settle down. With that I’d like to say: for the daring hearts out there, take the plunge, it will be the best and most educational experience you will have.
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