Radiation therapists in Ontario graduate from a three-year second entry professional degree program in medical radiation sciences. Radiation therapists are responsible for the planning and delivery of radiation treatment to patients along with patient education, emotional support and counseling. Radiation therapists are integral members of an interprofessional health care team. The radiation therapists planned, treated and provided education and support to 4,988 patients in the 2009/2010 fiscal year and delivered 95,500 radiation treatments.
All radiation therapists employed in the radiation therapy and medical physics departments at Sunnybrook's Odette Cancer Centre (OCC) are registered with the College of Medical Radiation Technologists of Ontario (CMRTO) as required by legislation (RHPA and HARP). Membership in the professional association (CAMRT) is not mandatory but over 80 per cent of the radiation therapists are members. All radiation therapists are certified in CPR at the Basic Rescuer Level. Re-certification is required annually.
The OCC is fully affiliated with the undergraduate medical radiation sciences program at the University of Toronto / The Michener Institute for Applied Health Sciences in Toronto. Clinical practicums are only available to undergraduate students from this program.
The OCC does provide elective placements (one-day to one-week duration) to radiation therapy students from external programs and to visiting radiation therapists. The OCC does also provide one-day visits including tours for undergraduate students interested in the profession of radiation therapy.
Undergraduate medical radiation sciences (MRS) program
For information about the program, please contact the academic institutions directly:
Upon graduation from the MRS program
Students graduating from the MRS program are eligible to write the national certification examination. For information about national certification, please contact the national organization directly: Canadian Association of Medical Radiation Technologists
After successfully passing the national certification examination, radiation therapists employed in Ontario must be registered with the College of Medical Radiation Technologists of Ontario (CMRTO) as required by legislation (RHPA and HARP) to practice. For more information about the college requirements including continuing education requirements, please contact the CMRTO directly.
Continuing education for undergraduate MRS students
There are many conferences, workshops and courses in oncology and related fields that will be of relevance to radiation therapy students.
The major professional conferences are:
- National and provincial association conferences
- Radiation Therapy specific conferences
Awards for clinical teaching
The Golden Apple is awarded annually by the graduating class of the undergraduate students completing their clinical practicum at the OCC to a radiation therapist for their excellence in clinical teaching.