ASRT: Radiation therapist vacancies rise

The vacancy rate for radiation therapists has risen slightly since 2014, according to a new survey by the American Society of Radiologic Technologists (ASRT).

After a period of decline between 2012 and 2014, the vacancy rate for radiation therapists rose marginally from 1.6% in 2014 to 2.9% in 2016, according to the latest ASRT radiation therapy staffing and workplace survey.

The vacancy rate represents the number of positions that are open and being actively recruited for. In comparison, the medical dosimetrist vacancy rate fell slightly over the same period, from 3.6% in 2014 to 3.5% in 2016, the society reported. The total average number of full-time medical dosimetrists also fell slightly, from 2.5 per facility in 2014 to 2.2 in 2016.

The increase in radiation therapy vacancies is similar to the increase the organization found when it conducted the 2015 survey, the ASRT said, while advising caution in interpreting the results.

The increase is only a single data point and doesn't necessarily indicate a trend, said radiation therapist Myke Kudlas, ASRT's director of learning and leadership. The 2018 survey will confirm whether rates are continuing to rise, he added.

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