What they do

A radiologist is a physician who specialises in obtaining and interpreting medical images, making him or her an imaging expert. Medical images are obtained by using x-rays (radiographs, CT, fluoroscopy), or radioactive substances (nuclear medicine), others by means of sound waves (ultrasound) or the body's natural magnetism (MRI).

Radiologists assist or advise other doctors and specialists when diagnosing and treating patients using medical imaging.

There are approximately 70 radiologists in Western Australia all of who are based in the metropolitan area. Less than 20% of the practitioners are women.

Working conditions

Most radiologists work as part of a clinical team in public or private hospitals or private radiology practices. They are usually employed fulltime and work five days a week however this can vary as some radiologists, particularly those who work in hospitals, may work evenings or on weekends.

Tools and technologies

Radiology is at the forefront of technological advances in clinical medicine and is becoming more highly sub-specialised as imaging technology increases in its sophistication and complexity.

How do I become one?

Education and training

To become a radiologist, you must first become a qualified medical practitioner and then specialise in radiology.

To become a medical practitioner, you need to study a degree in medicine. Alternatively, you can study a degree in any discipline followed by a postgraduate degree in medicine.

Some universities in Western Australia offer relevant courses. Contact the universities you are interested in for more information.

To then specialise in radiology, doctors can apply to the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Radiologists (RANZCR) to undertake further training and ultimately receive fellowship.

To be eligible for this specialist training, on completion of your medical degree, you must work in the public hospital system for a minimum of two years (internship and residency).

Required registration and licensing

To work as a radiologist in Western Australia, you will need to obtain registration from the Medical Board of Australia.