Advanced skill mix in the Breast Care Centre
Abstract:The Breast Unit was unable to cope with increasing demand in both the screening and symptomatic breast services and was failing to meet access targets for both urgent and non-urgent referrals. Owing to a national shortage of appropriately trained radiologists and radiographers recruitment was unsuccessful. It was decided to modernise our workforce and take on the four-tier system of radiography skill mix. Following an intensive period of recruitment and training this new way of working has been shown to be successful in both meeting access targets and increasing efficiency in the clinics. Much of the routine work previously done by radiographers is now done by assistant practitioner radiographers. This allows the radiographers time to develop advanced practice clinical skills to take on tasks formerly carried out by a consultant radiologist. It has also led to increasing job satisfaction and professional development of staff within the unit.
Document Type: Regular Paper
Publication date: March 1, 2006