Clinical oncology workforce census

Royal College of Radiologists workforce report highlights continuing struggle to staff UK cancer centres

This report from the Royal College of Radiologists provides information on the number, distribution and working patterns of consultant-grade oncologists employed in NHS cancer centres. It also forecasts workforce numbers and working patterns and estimates the extent to which future workforce supply and demand for cancer treatments are aligned. The report is intended to inform local and national oncology workforce training, planning and policy.

Based on data from every UK cancer hospital, the report reveals:

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  • One-in-six UK cancer centres now operates with fewer clinical oncology consultants than five years ago
  • Vacancies for clinical oncology posts are now double what they were in 2013 – with more than half of vacant posts empty for a year or more
  • The UK’s clinical oncology workforce is currently 18 per cent understaffed – without investment the shortfall is predicted to grow to at least 22 per cent by 2023
  • To close the gap between supply and demand for cancer doctors, oncology trainee numbers need to at least double. Even with that investment, the gap would not be closed until 2029.

Full report: Clinical Oncology UK Workforce Census Report 2018

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