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Australian radiographers’ and radiation therapists’ experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Shanahan, M.C. and Akudjedu, T.. N., 2021. Australian radiographers’ and radiation therapists’ experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic. Journal of Medical Radiation Sciences, 68 (2), 111-120.

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DOI: 10.1002/jmrs.462

Abstract

Introduction: Radiographers and radiation therapists are key patient-facinghealth practitioners supporting the delivery of optimal patient care during theCOVID-19 pandemic. The aim of this research was to investigate the impact ofCOVID-19 on clinical service delivery and well-being of these healthcareprofessionals in Australia. Methods: A cross-sectional online survey ofAustralian radiographers and radiation therapists was conducted in June–July2020. The survey collected data on demographic characteristics, and the impactof COVID-19 on professional practice, infection control and workplace-relatedstress. Results: A total of 218 responses were received. Changes in work hours(P < 0.001) and workload (P = 0.022) were experienced due to COVID-19.Diagnostic radiographers reported increased procedural pressure on mobileradiography, computed tomography and general radiography. For radiationtherapists, most pressure included areas of simulation and linear accelerator.PPE was in short supply at the start of the pandemic, and at the time of thestudy, shortages were identified for all PPE items. There was no difference inPPE supply reported by diagnostic radiographers and radiation therapistsexcept for hand sanitiser (P = 0.003). Respondents experienced increasedpersonal stress (61.4%) and anxiety (58.2%) at work due to COVID-19. Inaddition, their work caused increased stress to their family, partners or friends(57.4%). Conclusions: COVID-19 has resulted in changes to clinical workingpatterns and service delivery. PPE shortages, as well as increased workplace-related stress, were identified. Workplaces should seek to mitigate the pandemicimpact through the provision of adequate PPE for safe practice as well asimplement strategies to support and enhance staff well-being.

Item Type:Article
ISSN:2051-3909
Uncontrolled Keywords:COVID-19; pandemic; PPE; radiation therapist; radiographer; stress
Group:Faculty of Health & Social Sciences
ID Code:35194
Deposited By: Unnamed user with email symplectic@symplectic
Deposited On:17 Feb 2021 11:14
Last Modified:14 Jun 2021 15:59

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