Navigating uncertainty: The implementation of Australian radiation therapy advanced practitioners

Kristie Matthews, Gillian Duchesne, Marilyn Baird

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Radiation therapy advanced practice has been implemented in several international jurisdictions; however, it is yet to be systematically integrated into Australian radiation oncology centres. This paper presents the outcomes of a doctoral research study to explore the factors that may be influencing the implementation of radiation therapy advanced practice in Australia. Using a constructivist grounded theory methodological approach to guide procedures, data collection occurred via 6 nationally facilitated online (video mediated) focus groups, and during interviews and observations at 5 purposively selected clinical case study locations. Data analysis led to the development of a grounded theory ‘navigating uncertainty’ to describe the process influencing the implementation of radiation therapy advanced practice in Australia. Navigating uncertainty is explained by three inter-related contextual processes of conceptualising radiation therapy advanced practice, integrating radiation therapy advanced practice, and becoming the radiation therapy advanced practitioner. The research suggests that the process of actively finding a way to accommodate uncertainty is necessary for advanced practice implementation objectives to be realised.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)82-88
Number of pages6
JournalTechnical Innovations & Patient Support in Radiation Oncology
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2021


  • Advanced practice
  • Australia
  • Grounded theory
  • Qualitative research
  • Radiation therapy

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