Radiographers in the United Kingdom are highly qualified practitioners who provide services which are central to delivering fast and reliable diagnosis of disease as well as curative and palliative care for cancer patients. In the United Kingdom, these professionals take responsibility for leading complete procedures within imaging or radiotherapy.
ROLE AND RESPONSIBILITIES
A Radiographer uses a range of imaging technology and techniques to work out what disease or condition is causing a patient’s illness, including:
- x-ray to look through tissues to examine bones, cavities and foreign objects;
- fluoroscopy to see a real time image of the digestive system;
- CT (computed tomography) which provides views of cross-sections of the body;
- MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) to build a 2D or 3D map of the different tissue types within the body;
- ultrasound to check circulation and examine the heart as well as in antenatal work;
- angiography to investigate blood vessels.
There are two tipes of radiographers: diagnostic and therapeutic. It will be easy for you to understand the diferences as well as to figure out how is to work in the UK as a radiographer if you watch this video: https://youtu.be/G9qKppg0WQg
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REQUIREMENTS OF THE HEALTH AND CARE PROFESSIONS COUNCIL (HCPC)
To work as a radiographer in the United Kingdom, it is necessary to be registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC).
The HCPC will consider each case individually and will look at the length and level of the training leading to qualification and to the experience gained working as a radiographer overseas. The HCPC will need to be sure that the overseas applicant meets the Standards of Proficiency for Radiographers.
In November 2018, there were 34.286 radiographers registered with the HCPC.
The career of a Health Technician is structured in bands, so that a new-qualified will start working as band 5.
In the United Kingdom, the career progression is really promoted by the employers that show great satisfaction when the elements of their staff that demonstrate to be willing to develop. With professional experience, post-graduations and an excellent commitment, the career progression turns out to be a natural process.
When entering the labour market of the United Kingdom, you will understand that you can choose between two main types of contracts: permanent contracts and temporary/locum contract.
Under this regime, the professional is contracted directly by the hospital/clinic. The duration of the contract can be fixed-term or indefinite duration. These contracts are perfect for who is looking for stability and career progression.
In this case, the professional is contracted by an agency, that is contracted by an hospital or clinic and that has always qualified professionals available when they request employees. These contracts tend to be of short duration (normally between 1 and 9 months). The salary depends basically on the experience. In this case it is mandatory to be registered with a recruitment agency and have the compliance (documentation) updated.
The compliance is essential for the agency to collect all the necessary information to verify and prove that the candidate has all the competences and requirements to work in the healthcare sector, Therefore, it is necessary that to provide the following:
- identification documents;
- proofs of address;
- proofs of academic and professional qualifications.
Moreover, you will be asked to do a mandatory training, constituted by a theoretical and a practical component.
SALARIES AND CONTRIBUTIONS
In the United Kingdom there is no Christmas or holidays allowance. The salary is presented as annual and to know how much you will receive you need to divide this value for 12 months.
You will also pay contributions for social security and the Income Tax starting from your first salary. Therefore, consider that the contributions will be between 25% and 35% of your salary. This occurs if you already have your National Insurance Number, otherwise, an emergency tax will be charged to you.
The compensation of extra shifts depends on the service. There are services that pay in money and other in hours. The most common is hours. In every case, for the compensations, the payments is made the next month (in case of permanent contracts).
The Healthcare Professionals’ salaries, in the public sector (NHS), are regulated by the table in the Agenda For Change, with pay rates consisting of nine pay bands.
- As a newly qualified radiographer your starting salary is likely to be £24,907 (Band 5), rising up the pay scale to £30,615.
- As an experienced radiographer you can earn between £31,365 and £37,890 (Band 6).
- Typical salaries for advanced radiographers are between £38,890 and £44,503 (Band 7), while at consultant level you can earn up to £73,664 (Band 8c).
In the private sector, the salary is defined by the managers according to the salary tables of each institution.
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In the next article we’ll tell you everything you need to do when you firt arrive to the UK. Stay tuned.
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