Session type:

Promoting early presentation of breast cancer: implementation and evaluation of a training programme for radiographers to deliver a psycho-educational intervention

Caroline Burgess1, Patsy Whelehan2, Lynne Omar1, Lorraine Tucker1, Amanda Ramirez1



1Institute of Psychiatry/Kings College London, London, UK, 2South East London Breast Screening Programme/Kings College Hospital, London, UK


To develop and pilot a training programme for radiographers to deliver a psycho-educational intervention to promote early presentation, in the event of discovery of a breast cancer symptom, among women receiving their final invited mammogram with the National Health Service Breast Screening Programme (NHSBSP).


A 10 minute structured interview has been developed and tested, which aims to improve older women’s knowledge about breast symptoms and personal risk, and increase confidence to detect a breast change. The intervention is quality assured against competency ratings on the content and style of the interview.

Training model

Includes didactic teaching, communication skills training, experiential learning using role-play with actors and feedback on videotaped interviews. Skills are rehearsed in a clinic setting with mentoring from trained radiographers.


Feasibility of training in the NHSBSP was tested with four radiographers working in the South East and South West London breast screening services. Competence and confidence to deliver the interview were assessed before and after training.


All four radiographers completed the training programme. Three of the 4 radiographers were assessed as competent and all increased their confidence to deliver the intervention.


It is feasible to train diagnostic radiographers to reliably deliver an intervention to promote early presentation of breast cancer and thereby potentially save lives.The training may provide a model for other health care professionals to deliver cancer awareness messages effectively.