Radiotherapy is a highly complex, multi-step process that requires the input of many different staff groups in the planning and delivery of the treatment.
Though errors are rare, when they do occur the consequences can be significant for the patient. Complexity arises from the wide range of conditions treated, technologies used and professional expertise needed. This complexity is compounded by the multiple steps involved and the fact that processes are continually changing in the light of research and the introduction of new technologies.
A working party, which included the National Reporting and Learning Service (NRLS), worked together to produce this report. The purpose of this report is to look at ways of reducing errors in radiotherapy which are caused by individual human error or failure of systems of work, with a view to finding practical and cultural solutions which will result in patient safety being optimised.
The report sets out a series of recommendations key recommendations about communication and multidisciplinary procedures.