Radiography Support Worker

Radiography Support Workers work with radiographers to help to diagnose or treat patients. They also help administer treatment to patients and process digital images used to diagnose patients.

The Role

As a radiography support worker, you will help in

  • assisting and reassuring patients
  • processing digital images
  • helping the radiographer with procedures, such as biopsies
  • making sure the working environment is clean and hygienic
  • preparing patients for treatment, including lifting patients and transporting them between other wards and departments
  • helping to maintain equipment and reporting faults
  • updating patient records and booking appointments

Most radiography support workers are based in hospitals, providing services for other departments, including accident and emergency, outpatients, operating theatres and wards. They are sometimes known as imaging support workers.

Diagnostic radiographers use sophisticated equipment to take images and use them to make a diagnosis, so the correct treatment can be given to the patient. They work in hospital radiography departments, outpatient clinics, accident and emergency department, wards or operating theatres. 

Therapeutic radiographers plan and deliver radiation treatment. This includes the use of high energy radiation using dedicated equipment.

Radiography Support Workers assist both types of Radiographer.

Within a hospital setting, you may also work with medical physicists, engineers, doctors, nurses and other health professionals.

Skills, Interests and Abilities

Useful skills include

  • patience and empathy
  • a caring and friendly personality
  • accuracy and attention to detail
  • strong communication skills
  • team working skills
  • an awareness of health and safety regulations
  • good level of physical fitness
  • confident using imaging technologies
  • IT skills


Useful abilities include

  • the ability to relate to people of all ages, lifestyles and backgrounds
  • the ability to reassure patients and explain procedures
  • the ability to keep your knowledge and skills up to date

Entry Requirements

To apply for a job as a radiography support worker, you are likely to need a good standard of general education, including English and Maths. Previous voluntary or paid work experience in a healthcare setting would be an advantage.

The specific entry requirements will depend of the Agenda for Change (AfC) band (2, 3 or 4) for the job. The qualifications asked for may also vary, depending on the recruiting NHSScotland board. You are advised to contact each individual board to find out its specific requirements.

You may also require or be encouraged to work towards an SQA SVQ Level 2 or 3 Healthcare Support (Clinical). Find out more about these qualifications on the VQ Finder website.

You will also need to be approved for membership of the Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) scheme managed by Disclosure Scotland.

Modern Apprenticeships

Modern Apprenticeships offer those aged over 16 paid employment with the opportunity to train for jobs at craft, technician and management level.

The Modern Apprenticeship in Healthcare Support (clinical) at SCQF Level 6 and SCQF Level 7 is a framework for people interested in working in a clinical healthcare setting.

Contact your local Board to find out if this Modern Apprenticeship is available in your area.

For more information about this Modern Apprenticeship framework, look at

Learning and Development

Working as a radiography support worker in NHSScotland, you will be given the training you need for the job including:

  • an introduction to the department and its procedures
  • how to use the equipment
  • health and safety
  • risk management

During your career, you may have the opportunity to study for qualifications, such as an SQA HNC Allied Health Professions: Radiography (SCQF Level 7) or an SQA HNC Allied Health Professions: Diagnostic Imaging (SCQF Level 7).

This role, following further higher education, could lead to a career as a Diagnostic radiographer or Therapeutic radiographer.

Radiography support workers can become members of the Society and College of Radiographers (SCoR). SCoR provides courses, conferences and seminars where radiography assistants can update their skills and network with others doing similar work.

Professional Bodies

The Society and College of Radiographers (SCoR) is the only body in the UK representing the whole of the radiographic workforce. They are a trade union and professional body representing the professional, educational, public and workplace interests of our members. Founded in 1920, they are one of the oldest and most experienced radiography organisations in the world.