Sonography, radiography, management: How to do it all
SCP Radiology’s Head of Department in Vredenburg is an all-rounder in the truest sense. She is one of the very few radiographers who can image in all diagnostic modalities – from MRI, CT and mammography to general X-rays and the more specialised modality of ultrasound. Additionally, she oversees the day-to-day operations at one of SCP’s busy in-hospital branches.
Meet Elsabé Britz. She has 35 years’ experience as a radiographer and joined SCP in 2008. She has since become a trusted figure to patients on the West Coast and has expanded her skills set significantly.
Working on a relatively small team away from the metro, she had little choice but to learn CT and theatre radiography shortly after arriving in Vredenburg.
In 2009 she upskilled to mammography and in 2016, when the Vredenburg branch’s only full-time sonographer started considering a career move, Elsabé decided to start learning ultrasound.
Stepping into sonography
“I worked with the sonographer for about six months before she resigned. And when she did, I suddenly found myself in the deep end. Being in the deep end was a good thing, though, because the deep end is where you learn everything. I attended every examination done in the branch, and our radiologists were wonderful teachers.”
Further career highlights include becoming HOD of the branch in 2019, and learning MRI in 2021. Today, Elsabé enjoys being able to help wherever her help is needed most, while the knowledge gained in each modality helps her be a better radiographer overall.
She counts herself as one of the lucky radiographers for whom ultrasound is in their scope of practice. It has become her favourite modality, after all. “You gain so much more insight into physiology and pathology, and you’re much more involved in the final diagnosis.
“Learning ultrasound wasn’t easy though, and at times I considered walking away from it. But if there is one thing I can tell my younger colleagues today, it is to be unafraid of learning something new.
“You grow not only in your career but also as a human being. There’s nothing more rewarding than mastering a new skill!”
This article is part of a series of short staff profiles by SCP Radiology to highlight radiography as a career. Read more about Radiography Careers in our News section.