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Choosing a career in radiation oncology in India: A survey among young radiation oncologists

1 Department of Radiation Oncology, Meherbai Tata Memorial Hospital, Jamshedpur, Jharkhand, India
2 Department of Radiotherapy, Narayana Superspeciality Hospital, Howrah, India
3 Department of Radiotherapy, Midnapore Medical College and Hospital, Midnapore, West Bengal, India

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Praloy Basu,
9B Queens Park, Kolkata - 700 019, West Bengal
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jcrt.JCRT_779_19

Background: Radiation oncology in India is much debated as a career option to take up. This survey among young radiation oncologists (YROs), the first of its kind, attempts to assess the career expectations and concerns that affect most of us. Materials and Methods: This survey was conducted using the online survey tool of SurveyMonkey in October 2018. The Association of Radiation Oncologists of India (AROI) members' database was used to send the survey link over E-mail to recipients (AROI life member after 2004). Results: Out of 1685 invitees, 492 (29.19%) recipients took the survey. Most (69.14%) of the respondents were males who worked as senior residents and junior consultants and employed in private hospitals and state-level teaching institutes. Postspecialization (MD/DNB) experience was mostly <3 years (56.52%). Most of YROs worked in Tier-I city (48.9%) mostly in telecobalt-based facilities. Most of our respondents (73.01%) aspired to work in academic teaching hospital/research institute, and the primary concern was academics/research (39.88%) followed by income (23.31%). There was a similar distribution of respondents with respect to their desire to shift to medical oncology. There was marked dissatisfaction over remuneration, job openings, job security, and poor scope of career improvement. 56.50% of respondents believed that they need to move abroad to improve their quality of life. However, 76.69% of respondents still felt very passionate about their professional choice. Finally, 61.97% of professionals believed that this survey will correctly reflect the present scenario among YROs. Conclusions: The survey portrays a mixed picture as expected. Major policy changes are required to improve the infrastructure and job opportunities of this profession.

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