Radiation Oncology Medical Physicist

Radiation oncology medical physicists are medical physicists who create, implement and monitor the procedures which allow the best treatment using radiation, taking into account the protection and safety of patients and others involved in the treatment process.

Radiation oncology medical physicists are most typically involved with the safe operation and quality of systems used for imaging and treatment of patients. This can include machines such as linear accelerators, CT scanners, superficial X-ray machines, treatment computer systems and radioactive materials. Radiation oncology medical physicists are also responsible for implementing and ensuring the safety of new treatment techniques such as four dimensional (4D) CT imaging and image guided radiation therapy.

Radiation oncology medical physicists work closely with IT and engineering staff to ensure all the radiotherapy equipment and computers are working correctly and linked together correctly.

In their role, a radiation oncology medical physicist is consulted by radiation oncologists and radiation therapists to provide advice as to the best use of medical radiation for treatment and protection. Radiation oncology medical physicists make sure that all equipment meets international and national conditions so that the radiation dose recommended by the radiation oncologist and planned by the radiation therapist can be delivered to the patient correctly.

 

Click on the video above which provides an overview of the role of a Radiation Oncology Medical Physicist.

Education and Training

Radiation Oncology Medical Physicist

High School

Interest in mathematics, physics, biology and completion of physics and mathematics subjects

University study required and professional entry to the profession

Professional entry to Radiation Oncology Medical Physics (ROMP) in Australia involves all of the following:

- Completion of an undergraduate degree with honours in science or engineering with an emphasis on physics and mathematics
- Completion of Master of Medical Physics or equivalent
- Completion of the Training, Education and Assessment Program (TEAP) as a ROMP registrar. The TEAP includes a minimum of three years clinical placement. Some ROMP registrars go onto PhD studies.

Registration

All students and qualified professionals will be registered with the Australian Health Practitioners Regulation Agency(AHPRA). All require a Radiation Use Licence from their local radiation health department.

Check with the Universities Admissions Centre for each university’s entry prerequisites.


Working Conditions and Salary Range

Radiation oncology medical physicists can work in either public or private practice. Salaries vary from State to State as Health is a State concern and not a Federal jurisdiction. The range of salary for a radiation oncology medical physicist is approximately $60,000 to $211,000. Further details regarding salary are available from individual departments and practices.