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1. Scope of Professional Practice

As a member of the radiography workforce you must practice in a safe and competent manner within your own scope of practice based on education, competency, knowledge, extent of experience and registration.

Professional indemnity insurance is available through membership of The Society of Radiographers. There may be circumstances when public liability insurance is required, this would only be applicable for unusual conditions, for example, radiographers working as independent practitioners. You must seek to further the profession of radiography and to maintain public confidence in the profession.

1.1 Scope of practice of radiography

All radiographers have a responsibility towards users of your services and a unique individual responsibility for the optimisation of any ionising or non-ionising radiation dose to individuals and to the genetic inheritance of the public at large. You are required to abide by current legislation and healthcare policy.

1.2 Individual scope of practice

You must consider the requirements of your individual scope of practice and seek to develop and maintain your abilities, to recognise the limits of your competence and to practice within them. You must monitor your practice and any protocols you work within using evidence from audit findings and from the relevant research in order to develop best practice.

You will always be accountable for your actions, your omissions and your behaviours and need to be able to justify any decisions you take within your scope of practice. You should recognise any deficiencies you may have and take appropriate action to rectify them.

1.3 Development of the profession

You should endeavour to ensure that the profession of radiography continues to develop in all fields and specialities and look for opportunities where development is possible. With this in mind you should seek out and work with others in pursuit of this goal, bearing in mind that your main responsibilities are always to service users.

1.4 Individual role development

Opportunities for individual role development lie within the career progression framework. You must engage in educational planning relevant to your needs and the needs of the service arising from clinical practice. You should seek to become a reflective, self-directed learner; able to appraise recent relevant research and to discuss and review the evidence base with colleagues in a variety of situations. You should encourage colleagues and other members of the radiography workforce in their role development.

1.5 Competence and continuing professional development

You must develop and maintain high standards of competency in skills, knowledge, acquired attitudes and behaviour and must work within current legislative and employers’ frameworks.


You should actively engage in learning in a constant process of development through the integration of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) in your day to day practice. CPD is a requirement for registrants and therefore must be a planned activity which is evidenced.

Registrants must follow the HPC guidelines in Your guide to our standards for continuing professional development3.

1.6 Clinical supervision/teaching

You should be willing to be involved in the supervision, teaching, training, appraising and assessing of student radiographers, assistant practitioners and trainees. You also have a professional obligation towards the teaching and training of other healthcare professionals (HCPs) in some practice areas eg, radiographers may be involved in mentoring nurses or midwives in ultrasound training. When involved in any such activities, you need to develop the skills, attitudes and practices of a caring and competent teacher/trainer. You should be objective and honest when supervising, appraising, evaluating or assessing the performance of others as service users will be at risk if you describe as competent someone who has not yet met or maintained a satisfactory standard of practice.

1.7 Professional liability insurance

There are inherent risks arising from the wide practice of radiography so it is important that you have adequate insurance to cover these risks. Usually insurance coverage is vicariously undertaken by your employer as long as you practice within your own scope otherwise the vicarious liability of the employer may be negated. The SCoR, through its annual subscription, covers personal liability insurance for those members working in the UK or who are travelling and temporarily working abroad in all countries with the exception of the USA and Canada.

Radiographers undertaking imaging outside any recognised care management framework eg, social ultrasound scans arising from self-referrals are advised to obtain additional professional indemnity provision.

Radiographers who practice as independent practitioners must ensure that they have adequate vicarious, personal and third party liability insurance.

For further advice see SCoR documents Statements on Ultrasound Referrals and Professional Insurance Arrangements4 and Professional Indemnity Insurance Statement5.

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