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5.0 Advanced Practice and Role Extension

CT is a diagnostic pathway well placed to facilitate and benefit from advanced and consultant level practice. Expert specialist clinical knowledge is supported by leadership, research, service development and educational skills and is benchmarked by the CoR accreditation schemes. The SCoR Education and Career Framework document25 stipulates the learning outcomes radiographers need to achieve.

Examples of role extension in advanced and consultant practice include:

5.1 Virtual colonoscopy

NICE supports CT colonography (virtual colonoscopy) as an alternative to colonoscopy or flexible sigmoidoscopy then barium enema for some patients.26 When performed by specialist trained CT radiographers it provides an opportunity to allow rapid completion of staging at one visit without the requirement to have a radiologist present. The benefits of this type of radiographer-led service include reduced wait for results, potentially lower costs and improved patient experience.

5.2 CT head reporting

CT Head reporting by radiographers has evolved over the past 10-15 years. Advanced practitioner radiographers may be involved with clinical leadership and education, scanning, reporting and research within their area of expertise and so offer unique insight and opportunity to lead service redesign and delivery. Postgraduate training is mandatory to achieve a Certificate in Reporting. In addition to this, specific Scope of Practice and Scheme of Work documents should reflect this hybrid role and be agreed and signed off by employer and employee. 

 

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