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Volume 6 Supplement 1

Symposium Mammographicum 2004

Workforce issues

The prevention, diagnosis and treatment of breast disease requires an integrated approach to healthcare, and a workforce that is able to function interprofessionally and across the spectrum of healthcare from public health and preventative care to care of patients in the terminal stages of their disease. It is important to remember this when addressing workforce issues, especially when focusing on one section of the workforce community, the radiography workforce.

Changes to the National Breast Screening Programme have necessitated an increase in the size of the workforce to carry out the screening mammograms, and an increase in workforce elsewhere to deal with the subsequent additional demand for further assessment and treatment. This has coincided with a severe shortage of radiographers and radiologists, two key groups in the workforce. This has led to a re-examination of roles and responsibilities of staff and the tentative introduction of the career progression framework for the radiography workforce.

This presentation outlines the career progression framework with particular reference to the National Breast Screening Programme. It identifies key challenges that this has brought; for example, education and training; role boundary blurring; and professional patch protectionism. It will also offer some potential solutions, which, together, should help meet the needs of clients and patients.

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Paterson, A. Workforce issues. Breast Cancer Res 6 (Suppl 1), P26 (2004).

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  • Public Health
  • Cancer Research
  • Integrate Approach
  • Potential Solution
  • Preventative Care