open access

Vol 25, No 5 (2020)
Original research articles
Published online: 2020-09-01
Submitted: 2019-10-29
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Medical physics graduate education in Mexico and its relation to the advances in radiation oncology

María-Ester Brandan, Alejandro Rodríguez-Laguna
DOI: 10.1016/j.rpor.2020.06.012
·
Rep Pract Oncol Radiother 2020;25(5):846-850.

open access

Vol 25, No 5 (2020)
Original research articles
Published online: 2020-09-01
Submitted: 2019-10-29

Abstract

Aim

To evaluate the state of graduate education in medical physics and progress in radiation oncology (RO) equipment in Mexico since 2000, when conferring degrees from two master’s-degree programs in Medical Physics began.

Background

Medical physics is a Health Profession and there are international recommendations for education, training, and certification. Both programs follow these education guidelines. The most common clinical occupation of graduates is in RO services. Techniques in Mexican RO include traditional and high-precision procedures.

Methods

Academic and occupational information about the programs and their graduates were obtained from official websites. Graduates were invited to respond to a survey that requested information about their present job. We obtained data on RO equipment and human resources from public databases and estimated staffing requirements of medical physicists (MPs).

Results

Medical physics programs have graduated a total of 225 MPs. Half of them work in a clinical environment and, of these, about 90 work in RO services. MPs with M.Sc. degrees constitute 36% of the current MP workforce in RO, estimated to be 250 individuals. Survey responses pointed out the main merits and limitations of the programs. The number of MPs in RO has increased fivefold and the number of linacs sixfold in 15 years. The present number of MPs is insufficient, according to published guidelines.

Conclusion

All MPs in RO services with advanced modalities must be trained following international recommendations for graduate education and post-graduation clinical training. Education and health institutions must find incentives to create more graduate programs and clinical residencies.

Abstract

Aim

To evaluate the state of graduate education in medical physics and progress in radiation oncology (RO) equipment in Mexico since 2000, when conferring degrees from two master’s-degree programs in Medical Physics began.

Background

Medical physics is a Health Profession and there are international recommendations for education, training, and certification. Both programs follow these education guidelines. The most common clinical occupation of graduates is in RO services. Techniques in Mexican RO include traditional and high-precision procedures.

Methods

Academic and occupational information about the programs and their graduates were obtained from official websites. Graduates were invited to respond to a survey that requested information about their present job. We obtained data on RO equipment and human resources from public databases and estimated staffing requirements of medical physicists (MPs).

Results

Medical physics programs have graduated a total of 225 MPs. Half of them work in a clinical environment and, of these, about 90 work in RO services. MPs with M.Sc. degrees constitute 36% of the current MP workforce in RO, estimated to be 250 individuals. Survey responses pointed out the main merits and limitations of the programs. The number of MPs in RO has increased fivefold and the number of linacs sixfold in 15 years. The present number of MPs is insufficient, according to published guidelines.

Conclusion

All MPs in RO services with advanced modalities must be trained following international recommendations for graduate education and post-graduation clinical training. Education and health institutions must find incentives to create more graduate programs and clinical residencies.

Get Citation

Keywords

Medical physics; Education; Mexico; Radiation oncology services

About this article
Title

Medical physics graduate education in Mexico and its relation to the advances in radiation oncology

Journal

Reports of Practical Oncology and Radiotherapy

Issue

Vol 25, No 5 (2020)

Pages

846-850

Published online

2020-09-01

DOI

10.1016/j.rpor.2020.06.012

Bibliographic record

Rep Pract Oncol Radiother 2020;25(5):846-850.

Keywords

Medical physics
Education
Mexico
Radiation oncology services

Authors

María-Ester Brandan
Alejandro Rodríguez-Laguna

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