Radiology and diagnostics

Radiology and diagnostic services are vital to almost every specialty in the NHS, to ensure patients receive high-quality, effective and timely treatment and care. The NHS carries out more than 43m radiological procedures annually (2018/19) providing X-rays, ultrasound, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), fluoroscopy and computed axial tomography (CT), and also intervention radiology (IR), to help diagnose and treat injuries and diseases.

There is increasing demand for MRI and CT scans; CT figures doubled from 250,000 per month to 500,000 between 2012 and 2019, while MRI figures rose from 170,000 to 320,000 per month in the same period.

GIRFT’s Radiology National Report makes 20 recommendations to help maximise existing capacity and plan for expansion with the creation of community diagnostic hubs, away from hospitals.

In addition, GIRFT’s pathology workstream presents the development of an overarching quality framework – called the Clean Framework – to help pathology networks and labs widen their focus to include the pre-analytical and post-analytical stages of the diagnostic pathway.

The Pathology National Report recommends that The Clean Framework is established as the governing ethos for pathology testing – including tests for COVID-19 – and as the basis of pathology accreditation throughout the healthcare system. GIRFT is now working with national bodies to embed the framework across the whole end-to-end pathway, starting with primary care and emergency departments.

Dr Giles Maskell

Clinical Lead for Radiology

Dr Giles Maskell has been a consultant radiologist in Truro since 1991. He was previously president of the Royal College of Radiologists from 2013-2016. He has particular interests in radiological error and in building and maintaining a healthy culture in radiology departments.

Dr Kath Halliday

Former GIRFT Clinical Lead for Radiology

Dr Kath Halliday is past chair of the British Society of Paediatric Radiology from 2010 to 2016. She has been a consultant paediatric radiologist in Nottingham since 1998. She has a special interest in the imaging of non-accidental injury and provides expert opinion for cases throughout the UK. She was appointed as president of the Royal College of Radiologists in 2022.

Elaine Quick

Clinical Advisor for Radiology

Elaine is an experienced Imaging Specialist with a demonstrated history of working in the hospital & health care industry. Skilled in NHS, Healthcare Information Technology (HIT), Picture Archiving and Communication System (PACS), Healthcare Management, and Medical Imaging. 

Useful information

  • Transforming imaging services in England
    In 2019, NHS England published a national strategy setting out a proposal for implementing collaborative imaging networks on a national basis across England, delivering better quality care, better value services for patients and providing NHS staff opportunities to develop their career and increase their productivity. 

GIRFT radiology report puts patients at the centre of the post-COVID service

Improving the experience of patients should be at the heart of work to increase capacity in radiology services within the constraints of COVID-19, according to a new national report on the specialty from the Getting It Right First Time (GIRFT) programme. 

Professor Sir Mike Richards’ recent review of diagnostic services Diagnostics: Recovery and Renewal called for an urgent increase in diagnostic provision, including the creation of community diagnostic hubs, or ‘one-stop shops’ away from hospitals.

This aligns with recommendations in the GIRFT report, which identifies ways of maximising existing capacity and planning service expansion. Other patient-centred measures outlined in the report include: online booking and extended hours for outpatient appointments, dedicated day case units or beds for patients having interventional radiology procedures and delivering faster results by increasing the amount of reporting carried out at home by radiologists and reporting radiographers. 

Find out more about GIRFT’s data-led approach and best practice resources:

In November 2020, GIRFT published its national speciality report for Radiology:

Click above to view the pdf report

Watch the video about the Radiology report…

Click above to play the Radiology national report video

Radiology and Diagnostics Academy Resources