What Do Radiation Therapists Do (including Their Typical Day At Work)

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Job Description, Daily Responsibilities, and Work Life

Job Description

Job Description

Radiation Therapists provide radiation therapy to patients as prescribed by a radiologist according to established practices and standards. Duties may include reviewing prescription and diagnosis; acting as liaison with physician and supportive care personnel; preparing equipment, such as immobilization, treatment, and protection devices; and maintaining records, reports, and files. May assist in dosimetry procedures and tumor localization. They also position patients for treatment with accuracy, according to prescription.

Other tasks include:

  • Administer prescribed doses of radiation to specific body parts, using radiation therapy equipment according to established practices and standards.
  • Follow principles of radiation protection for patient, self, and others.
  • Review prescription, diagnosis, patient chart, and identification.
  • Conduct most treatment sessions independently, in accordance with the long-term treatment plan and under the general direction of the patient’s physician.
  • Enter data into computer and set controls to operate or adjust equipment or regulate dosage.
  • Check radiation therapy equipment to ensure proper operation.

We asked Radiation Therapists how satisfied they are with their job. Here is what they said.

Job satisfaction

86%

How meaningful is this job

93%


86% of them said they were satisfied with their job and 93% said they find that their job makes the world a better place or helps to make someone else’s life better.



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Typical Day At Work

On a daily basis, Radiation Therapists check radiation therapy equipment to ensure proper operation. They position patients for treatment with accuracy, according to prescription.

A typical day for a Radiation Therapist will also include:

  • Administer prescribed doses of radiation to specific body parts, using radiation therapy equipment according to established practices and standards.
  • Follow principles of radiation protection for patient, self, and others.
  • Enter data into computer and set controls to operate or adjust equipment or regulate dosage.
  • Maintain records, reports, or files as required, including such information as radiation dosages, equipment settings, or patients’ reactions.
  • Review prescription, diagnosis, patient chart, and identification.

We asked some Radiation Therapists a few questions to find out what else does their work day look like. Here is what we found.

Do you have telephone conversations everyday in this job? 82% said yes
How important is it to work in a team in this job? 73% said very important
Do you have group discussions everyday in this job? 85% said yes
Do you talk or work with customers everyday in this job? 50% said yes
Do you have to deal with angry customers everyday in this job? 29% said yes
Do you have to make decisions everyday in this job? 73% said yes


Other responsibilities

Besides their typical day, Radiation Therapists also provide assistance to other healthcare personnel during dosimetry procedures and tumor localization. They may also implement appropriate follow-up care plans.

On a weekly to monthly basis, Radiation Therapists Help physicians, radiation oncologists, or clinical physicists to prepare physical or technical aspects of radiation treatment plans, using information about patient condition and anatomy. They might also Prepare or construct equipment, such as immobilization, treatment, or protection devices.

In addition, they Train or supervise student or subordinate radiotherapy technologists.

Although specific duties may vary, many of them Photograph treated area of patient and process film.

To some Radiation Therapists, it is also their responsibility to Calculate actual treatment dosages delivered during each session.


Working life

Working hours

Standard 40 hour work week

Working schedule

Regular schedule like a 9 to 5

In a typical work week as a Radiation Therapist, you can expect to work 40 hour work week.

Do Radiation Therapists work in an office-style work environment?

Every day
89%


Never
11%


Do Radiation Therapists work outdoors?

Never
95%


Once a year
5%



Is this right for me

Best personality for this career

The Helpers and The Builders

People who are suitable for this job tends to like working with, communicating with, and teaching people. They like helping or providing service to others..

They also like work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They like working with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery.

You can read more about these career personality types here.



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Related to Radiation Therapists Job Description

Radiation Therapists job description, what do Radiation Therapists do, typical day for Radiation Therapists, what is it like to work as a Radiation Therapist, how many hours do Radiation Therapists work, day to day work of a Radiation Therapist

Additional resources

http://www.bls.gov/OOH/healthcare/radiation-therapists.htm
https://www.arrt.org/
http://www.asrt.org/
https://www.medicaldosimetry.org/generalinformation/index.cfm



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