Barriers to continuous professional development participation for radiographers in Kenya
Background. Updating knowledge and skills on an ongoing basis is an important requirement if one is to remain professionally relevant. Formalised continuous professional development (CPD) is, therefore, essential to stay up to date in a dynamic work environment. The majority of radiographers in Kenya work in remote rural health facilities, where CPD activities are limited. The question therefore arose: ‘To what extent are radiographers participating in CPD activities and what constitute barriers to participation?’
Objective. To describe the challenges that affect diagnostic radiographers’ participation in CPD activities in Kenya.
Methods. The study targeted radiographers who were registered with the Society of Radiography in Kenya (SORK). Two hundred and fifty prospective participants were recruited from the SORK database, using the fish-bowl sampling method. Questionnaires with self-addressed stamped envelopes were posted by ordinary mail to facilitate ease of return, while telephonic follow-up improved the response rate.
Results. The study revealed that 69% of diagnostic radiographers in Kenya were effectively participating in CPD activities. Barriers to CPD participation included time constraints (62%), financial constraints (66%), lack of information (54%), organisational culture (47%), paucity of resources (58%), and difficulty in being selected by their organisation to attend CPD activities (42%).
Conclusion. Professional development in a rapidly developing and expanding profession such as radiography is critical for best practice. Although the majority of diagnostic radiographers in Kenya participate in CPD, a large number do not owing to various challenges. A lack of finances was one of the most significant factors that served as a barrier. SORK, employers and institutions of higher education all have a responsibility towards the culture of lifelong learning. As the professional organisation representing radiographers, SORK should engage all stakeholders to collectively address the barriers to CPD participation for radiographers in Kenya.