Radiation Oncologist Kaimātai Mate Pukupuku
Radiation oncologists provide radiation treatment and management of patients with cancer and other medical conditions.
Radiation oncologists need to be registered with the Medical Council of New Zealand.
Radiation oncologists may do some or all of the following:
- talk to patients about their symptoms and illnesses, and examine them
- study x-rays, images and medical reports
- discuss various treatment options with patients and their families
- plan how to manage the patient's illness
- treat the patient using radiation therapy
- monitor, support and care for patients during and after treatment
- write reports on the treatment of patients for general practitioners and other medical specialists
- teach trainee radiation oncologists
- carry out research.
Radiation oncologists need to have good eyesight (with or without corrective lenses).
Useful experience for radiation oncologists includes:
- work in hospitals or other health-related work, such as in a clinic
- work caring for people.
Radiation oncologists need to be:
- able to make good decisions, and solve problems
- excellent at analysis and interpretation
- good at managing time
- motivated and disciplined
- able to work well under pressure
- good at communicating and inspiring confidence in others
- understanding of other cultures' attitudes to medical treatment.
Radiation oncologists need to have knowledge of:
- cancer and how to treat it
- anatomy and how the human body works
- different diseases and illnesses
- radiation treatments, and how these affect patients
- new research, treatments and practices
- medical ethics and law.
- usually work regular business hours, but may work long hours and be on call
- work in hospitals, clinics and private practices
- work in conditions that may be stressful, as they deal with seriously ill patients
- travel to conferences locally or overseas.
A tertiary entrance qualification is required to enter further training. Useful subjects include biology, chemistry, English, maths and physics.
Radiation oncologists may progress to jobs in areas such as:
- teaching trainee radiation oncologists
- clinical director roles
Years Of Training13 years of training required.
To become a radiation oncologist you need to:
- complete the Health Sciences First Year programme at Otago University, or the first year of either the Bachelor of Health Sciences or Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Science at Auckland University
- complete a five-year Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBChB) degree at Otago or Auckland University
- work for two years as a house officer (supervised junior doctor) in a hospital
- complete another five years as a registrar with specialist training and examinations to become a Fellow of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Radiologists.
You also need to be registered with the Medical Council of New Zealand.
- University of Otago website - information about the Health Sciences First Year programme
- University of Otago website - information about the Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery
- University of Auckland website - information about the Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery
- Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Radiologists website - information about radiation oncologist training
- Medical Council of New Zealand website - information on gynaecologist/obstetrician training
The Vulnerable Children Act 2014 means that if you have certain serious convictions, you can’t be employed in a role where you are responsible for, or work alone with, children.