What Qualifications Does a Radiation Oncologist Have?

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radiation oncologist treating breast cancer patientSoon after your cancer diagnosis, you may find yourself with a team of physicians who will all play a part in your treatment. You have the right to know who does what and what qualifications each doctor has to treat your condition. If radiation is recommended for you, one doctor you need to know about is a radiation oncologist.

Radiation Oncologist Certification

According to the American Board of Radiology (ABR), a doctor must pass two tests to become certified as an oncologist. These tests include the:

  • Computer-based Qualifying Exam. The qualifying exam has three parts. A doctor must pass the medical physics for radiation oncology, radiation and cancer biology, and clinical radiation oncology parts of the qualifying exam to become a radiation oncologist.
  • Oral Certifying Exam. After a doctor has completed residency training and passed all three parts of the computer-based qualifying exam, the doctor is eligible to sit for the oral certifying exam. During the certifying exam, doctors are asked about decision making and management of clinical cases. They must be ready to answer questions about all aspects of real-life situations that could impact the outcome for a patient, including, but not limited to, imaging, laboratory, and pathological findings and case management. This exam is given once a year and in only one location.

International medical school graduates and doctors who want to be researchers may be able to seek alternate paths to certification.

After initial certification, radiation oncologists must comply with specific requirements to maintain their ABR certification.

Radiation Oncologist Duty of Care

Your radiation oncologist owes you a duty of care. That means that he or she should act as a reasonable ABR-certified colleague would act in the same situation. If your radiation oncologist fails to provide you with this care and you are hurt by a radiation mistake, you could have a legal case for financial damages. Our radiation injury attorneys and staff nurse would be happy to evaluate your case, free of charge. Start a live chat with us now to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation.