Target Volume Delineation Training in Radiation Oncology in India : A Survey Evaluating Its Status, the Need for Educational Programs and the Utility of Virtual Teaching

Document Type : Research Articles


1 Department of Radiation Oncology, Regional Cancer Centre, Jawaharlal Institute of Post-Graduate Medical Education and Research (JIPMER), Puducherry, India.

2 Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, D Nagar JIPMER, India.


Introduction: The complexity of modern-day radiotherapy techniques calls for greater accuracy in target volume delineation which requires intensive training and expert guidance. In this study, we intend to evaluate the status of training in target delineation across radiation oncology curriculums in India and utility of webinars in teaching it. Methodology: We organized daily webinars on the topics of radiological anatomy and target volume delineation in common sites of cancer over a period of 2 weeks. At the end of the program, a 35 item survey questionnaire was shared with the participants. The responses were analysed and are reported here. Results: Out of the 797 participants that registered for the course, 356 radiation oncologists responded to the survey questionnaire. Majority (96%) of our respondents believe that there is a need for additional training in target volume delineation. Ninety percent of the participants felt that radiation oncology curriculum requires a formal radiology training but only 6.7% reported that their training consisted of a dedicated rotation and regular lectures in radiological anatomy. Majority (97%) responded that they were  likely to incorporate the points learnt from the webinar sessions in their daily practice. Forty eight percent of respondents opted for attending a webinar to an in-person event in the future while 34% would like to have the option to choose between the two. Ninety four percent agreed that online webinars should be conducted routinely even after the pandemic ends. Conclusion: Our survey results suggest that target volume delineation training in India is deficient and virtual teaching programs can be a practical and effective way to improve it. 


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