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J Oncol Manag. 1999 May-Jun;8(3):13-20.

Supply and demand for radiation therapists: a United States perspective for 1997-2002.

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Cooper Hospital/University Medical Center, Camden, NJ, USA.


The purpose of this paper is to review the current and future employment plans of radiation therapists and administrators that employ them so that the supply and demand for these individuals is quantified. The survey was funded by the American Society of Radiologic Technologists and implemented by the Task Force on Human Resources. In April 1997 a questionnaire was mailed to a sample of radiation therapy administrators identified by the mailing list of the Society of Radiation Oncology Administrators (SROA). Another questionnaire was mailed to a sample of radiation therapists holding active certificates with the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists. Results of the survey indicated an increased demand for radiation therapists based on plans for facility expansion. Individuals anticipating retirement in the next five years ranged from 7% of the radiation therapists and 12% of the administrators surveyed. A model was developed which projected a shortfall of therapists ranging from 0% (-13 positions) in 1998 to 3% (-403 positions) projected for 2002. The paper concludes that the supply of radiation therapists did not meet the demand in the time period measured; 1998-2002. An increase in newly educated radiation therapists is needed to fill the openings created by those leaving the field. The survey should be repeated at successive intervals to accurately track and project both the supply of and the demand for radiation therapists.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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