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1. Introduction

1.1 This third version of the Education and Career Framework, published by the College of Radiographers, is intended for the guidance and support of the whole imaging and radiotherapy workforce. Although primarily for a United Kingdom (UK) audience, it is anticipated that the Framework will be of international relevance in a globalised health care system.

1.2 It is an interactive web-based tool, which members can use to support their individual professional development in what is, for many, likely to be a portfolio career pathway. In this way, a degree of future-proofing has been built in. This tool enables individuals to navigate a range of learning and development opportunities starting from where they are and includes example pathways, outcomes, indicative curricula where relevant, case studies and a wealth of hyperlinks to relevant websites and resources. 

1.3 The Framework is intentionally non-prescriptive, reflecting the changing service context. Health and Social Care services are in a state of flux not experienced since the formation of the National Health Service (NHS) in 1948, a situation that offers opportunities for the workforce to continue to innovate and develop within the already wide scope of practice.

1.4 In England, The Health and Social Care Act (2012)1 enacts the transfer of most service commissioning to local Clinical Commissioning Groups and the setting up of Public Health England. Simultaneously, new service providers are being encouraged to enter the market to increase competition and drive up quality. The direction of travel across the remainder of the UK is for more independent and not-for-profit primary and community-based services.  There is a greater focus on prevention and early diagnosis which inevitably increases the role and scope of imaging and radiotherapy practice.

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