Final Year Undergraduate Healthcare Students' Knowledge About Radiation Protection
(2013) Final Year Undergraduate Healthcare Students' Knowledge About Radiation Protection, no. 103.
Aims The aim of the study was to assess the level of knowledge regarding radiation protection possessed by final year undergraduate healthcare students in relation to each professional discipline. It also aimed to assess the impact of clinical placement experience on radiation protection knowledge levels. Additionally, it aimed to evaluate whether the act of observing an imaging modality increases students' levels of knowledge in relation to radiation protection generally or pertaining to the specific imaging modality observed. Methodology The target population was final year healthcare students from the School of Health Sciences at Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh. Students from diagnostic radiography, therapeutic radiography, nursing, physiotherapy, occupational therapy and speech and language therapy courses were included. A questionnaire was used to assess levels of knowledge by collecting quantitative data. The data was analysed using descriptive statistics and non-parametric statistical tests to test if there were any significant differences in the knowledge levels between the different healthcare students included in this study. The percentages of participants who correctly answered specific questions were analysed and compared. The students were tested between 9th September and the 25th October 2013. Results and Conclusion This study highlights that overall healthcare students possess poor knowledge levels regarding radiation protection and in particular radiography students entering their final year demonstrated a lower level of knowledge than could be expected. The levels of knowledge could be considered to be inadequate considering that the students are about to apply forregistration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) which states that all healthcare professionals are required to be able to recognise risks to both patients and employees. The findings suggest that there is a strong case for the development and implementation of a programme of education on radiation protection to assist students to attain a necessary level of competence and to ensure safe healthcare practice in the future.