Professional duty of candour – Guidance for radiologists

Tuesday 7 June 2022

We are pleased to announce the launch of the Professional duty of candour – Guidance for radiologists publication. The Faculty of Clinical Radiology has developed guidance on the duty of candour with the aim of providing radiologists with guidance and real-world examples on the implementation of the duty of candour.

The document recognises the unique circumstances faced by radiologists and all who work in imaging. It is not possible to provide guidance for every situation, but the aim is to provide an approach which will help colleagues navigate an unfamiliar process in the best possible way for our patients and the professionals who care for them.

The authors aim to balance the competing demands of a practical and implementable policy; providing support and guidance for departments and radiologists undertaking duty of candour processes, with the ethical and moral principles of openness and transparency and the rights of patients to be informed about all aspects of their clinical care. The document covers the following areas:

  • The principles of candour
  • Why this can be difficult in a radiological context
  • Candour in different situations (reactive and proactive candour) and departmental disclosure policies
  • Candour processes in practice
  • The difference between discrepancy assessment and education/Radiology Events and Learning Meetings (REALM)
  • Specific considerations (interventional radiology and remote reporting within an imaging network).

The RCR would like to thank Professor Mark Callaway, Dr Giles Maskell, Dr Christopher Hammond, Dr Robin Evans and Mr Carl Flint (lay representative) for leading on this work.