Clinical radiology UK workforce census 2020 report

Date of next review: 

Produced yearly, The Royal College of Radiologists’ (RCR) census provides robust data on the state of the clinical radiology consultant workforce in the UK. The findings are essential reading for local and national workforce planners and are the cornerstone of RCR policy. 

Our most recent findings were returned at the end of 2020, following the most challenging year in NHS history. The health service remains under considerable pressure and 2021 and beyond will see profound change in response to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The pandemic has underlined the undisputed value and resilience of the healthcare workforce and highlighted its adaptability and ability to innovate.

Despite ongoing constraints, the importance of and opportunities for NHS radiology have been amplified in the past year, with:

  • The clear impetus for community diagnostic hubs that act as a one-stop shop for patients in a COVID-19-secure environment
  • A greater appreciation of interventional radiology (IR) as a non-invasive alternative to open surgery
  • Rapid facilitation of home reporting of imaging examinations.

While these positive developments provide much to celebrate and build on, the 2020 census findings highlight that key, long-term issues must be addressed to truly safeguard and improve patient care.