Ultrasound academies can help to improve sonographer recruitment and retention, through organized programs like apprenticeships, according to the U.K. Society of Radiographers (SoR).
The academies have a role to play in easing the pressure on clinical departments, specifically during early training stages, noted Gill Harrison, SoR's professional officer, in an update issued on 4 October. The next generation of sonographers -- as well as existing sonographers -- need support to develop their skills and competencies to provide extended services and feedback into research, leadership, and education, she said.
"Everyone has a role to play in supporting the next generation of sonographers but also in supporting existing sonographers to develop their skills and competencies to provide extended services and input into research, leadership, and education, should they choose to," she wrote.
In England, apprenticeships for advanced clinical practice can be used to support this development and the newly published preceptorship and capability development framework for sonographers, she pointed out.
Some of the devolved UK nations are also looking at placement capacity expansion initiatives and ideas to improve sonographer recruitment and retention, according to Harrison. In time, the academies should assist by taking some of the pressure off clinical departments, particularly in the early stages of training.