A radiation therapist (RT) is an Allied Health Professional who uses ionising radiation to treat disease, usually cancer. They are part of the team of health professionals who work under the guidance of a Radiation Oncologist to care for and treat cancer patients. They are usually assigned to work on a rotating basis in one of three main areas: simulation, planning and treatment.
Each patient would usually be cared for by at least 2 RTs for each procedure. Simulation involves the gathering of all relevant data to plan and treat the patient. After detailed understanding of the patient’s notes, the RTs will conduct a patient briefing as to the process of simulation and what to expect. RTs are in charge of fabricating any immobilisation equipment used for the patient’s radiotherapy treatment. Their expertise is critical to ensure that the patient is as comfortable as possible while being immobilised. Following which, the simulator will be used to obtain a scan of the patient’s treatment area.