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Steven Petit: Are we going to let the frogs burn?
May 20, 2024, 06:23

Steven Petit: Are we going to let the frogs burn?

Jenna Dean,ย Senior Research Radiation Therapist at The Olivia Newton-John Cancer Wellness and Research Centre, shared a post by , Associate Professor at Erasmus MC, on LinkedIn:

“This really needs consideration. There are shortages in the Radiation oncology workforce worldwide (across the MDT), we need to be looking at sensible options to ensure we can continue to provide quality care for our patients!”

Quoting ‘s post:

“Are we going to let the frogs burn?

These are frogs sitting comfortably in a pot of hot water. Unfortunately the frogs do not notice that the water is slowly warming up, until they get burned and eventually die.

Last week at the ESTRO2024 conference in Glasgow, I used this awful story as metaphor for the radiotherapy community.

Already today many radiotherapy centers experience severe shortage of personnel. Shortages that will increase further. Cancer incidence is increasing, by 13% (2027) to 19% (2023) compared to 2022 (Source Kanker in 2032, IKNL, 2022). At the same time, the working population decreases.

This means we can keep on treating all patients, ๐จ๐ง๐ฅ๐ฒ if we can reduce the workload per patient by an estimated 30% to 50% per patient. This requires a huge chance in the way we work.

At ESTRO2024 I made the case that, as radiotherapy community we should do more together, and focus on three important aspects
1. Recruitment of new staff
2. Reducing the workload per patient through hypofractionation and workflow optimization
3. Retention of staff

And ๐ฐ๐ก๐š๐ญ ๐ข๐ฌ ๐ซ๐ž๐ช๐ฎ๐ข๐ซ๐ž๐ ๐Ÿ๐ซ๐จ๐ฆ ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ ๐ฉ๐ž๐ซ๐ฌ๐จ๐ง๐š๐ฅ๐ฅ๐ฒ, as oncology professional?

Be prepared for change. Through personal development, connection with others and by being proactive. Detect what can be improved and take the initiative to improve it.

Or maybe โ€ฆ we prefer not to think too much about the water heating up?

Hopefully we will, on time, for the frogs to remain unharmed.”

Source: Jenna Dean/LinkedIn andย