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DJR 45-3A: Confidence and Proficiency Levels of Medical Dosimetry Graduates

Course Details

MDCB Credits: 2.50

ARRT Credits: 2.50

Available Until: 9/30/2021

Non-Member Price: $87.50

Member Price: $50.00

Member PLUS Price: $50.00

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Isaac D. Valdez, MSRS, CMD* and Kevin R. Clark, EdD, RT(R)(QM)**
* Proton Therapy Center, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, 1840 Old Spanish Trail, Houston, TX 77054, USA
** School of Health Professions, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, 1515 Holcombe Blvd, Unit 0 0 02, Houston, TX 77030, USA

The purpose of this study was to examine the confidence and proficiency levels of medical dosimetry graduates as they transition from student to professional during their first employment as medical dosimetrists. In addition, this study explored the support provided by employers to assist those medical dosimetry graduates during this transitional period. With assistance from the Medical Dosimetrist Certi- fication Board (MDCB), individuals who graduated from a Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology accredited medical dosimetry program between 2011 and 2018 and earned MDCB certification between 2012 and 2018 were invited to complete an original survey detailing their experiences during their first employment as medical dosimetrists. Data were collected using Qualtrics and analyzed with IBM’s SPSS. Most (93, 56.7%) participants indicated a moderate confidence level in their abilities to function as medical dosimetrists and suggested it took approximately 6 months (56, 34.1%) to feel confi- dent in their role as medical dosimetrists in the professional clinical setting. Regarding treatment planning techniques, participants indicated low proficiency levels in proton beam and brachytherapy plans and high proficiency levels in 3-dimensional conformal radiation therapy, intensity-modulated radiation therapy, and electron beam plans. These findings suggest that educators should consider strengthening curricula and offering additional clinical rotations specific to those areas that lacked proficiency. Most (128, 78.0%) did not complete a dosimetry-specific new employee training program but believed such
support would have been somewhat helpful (44, 34.4%) during their transition from student to professional. Hiring managers and dosimetry supervisors may find it beneficial to implement support measures to assist medical dosimetry graduates as they transition from student to professional.