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Beyond the Classroom – Sharing from Alumna of Bachelor of Science in Diagnostic Radiography and Imaging

What happens after graduation as a Radiographer? You continue to learn on the job! Parkway College’s 2013 valedictorian of its inaugural cohort from the Bachelor of Science in Diagnostic Radiography and Imaging programme, Fong Xiwen, shares her most recent encounter with knowledge as a working radiographer in the Parkway Group, and on meeting her aspiring radiographer juniors.

The 20th Asia Australasia Conference of Radiological Technologists was held in conjunction with the 2nd South East Asia Radiographers Conference and 3rd Asia Radiotherapy Symposium from 20 to 23 August 2015 at Suntec Convention and Exhibition Centre. The conference, themed “Transcending Medical Radiation – Beyond Medical Radiation; Beyond Patients; Beyond Borders”, provided a platform for professionals from all disciplines of radiography to come together to share expertise, reacquaint with colleagues and make new friends. I was privileged to be part of this conference together with thanks to my in-charge, the Senior Principal Radiographer’s recommendation and my organisation of work ParkwayHealth Radiology’s support.

The conference days had been fruitful as I sat attentively through many presentations ranging from plenary lectures, research projects to memorial dedicated lectures. Those by Dr Tyrone Goh and Assistant Professor Jenny Sim had inspired me the most. They highlighted that the role of radiographers has evolved progressively with changing healthcare needs. Radiographers that focus on technology, those that concentrate on anatomy and those centering on pathology can be classified as the 1st, 2nd and 3rd generation radiographers respectively. Right now, a 4th generation radiographer, known as a patient advocate, is in demand as we are the first contact for the patient, before the doctor. As a 4th generation radiographer – the patient advocate – one should possess the combined traits and skill sets of a 1st, 2nd and 3rd radiographer as well as the ability to understand the patient concerns and communicate them effectively. Radiographers are an integral part of a multi-disciplinary healthcare team and we should be active contributors in patient care.

Parkway College of Nursing and Allied Health (Parkway College) has been supporting the organising committee, Singapore Society of Radiographers (SSR), in various events since College’s Bachelor of Science (Honours) Diagnostic Radiography and Imaging programme commenced in 2010. Under the encouragement of the lecturers, students taking the degree programme volunteered as event helpers. Their roles range from ushering to performing at the opening ceremony and gala dinner.

The event organisers commended the Parkway College students for their diligence and excellent team spirit. An award of appreciation was presented to them during the gala dinner. I am very proud of them, knowing they gave their time willingly to broaden their learning horizon outside the classroom. Some juniors asked me for advice to become a competent radiographer. I would say to keep developing knowledge and skills, be updated about trend and technology, and stay humble, open-minded and collaborative. Learning should be a never-ending journey as I hope I can one day grow to become a true 4th generation radiographer to serve and benefit patients.

Article appeared in MOSAIC Oct – Dec 2015 Edition
By Group Corporate Communication, Parkway Pantai Limited

XiWen