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Radiation ProtectionTerm Paper

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Radiation Protection

Radiation Safety Manual

Mission Statement

Historical Background on Radiation Protection

Department Radiation Safety Procedures

Future Trends in Radiation Protection

F. Quality Assurance

G. Equipment Testing

H. Conclusion

The outstanding literature specifically contingent to the current practices and technological approaches to mitigating the potential for radiological contamination within the hospital is patient-centric with respect to patient care and safety within the Joint Commission framework. Additionally, each state is subject to the provisions restricting and monitoring the level of radiation exposure within hospitals as determined by the state department of health. The Code of Federal Regulations does regulate some but not all radiological materials with jurisdiction in establishing levels for compliance within health care facilities

. Our professional staff has made a commitment to the pursuit of excellence. This Radiological Safety Manual is a function of the logistical design and limits to the exposure for the potential of radiological contamination to the population by isolating the Radiological diagnostic and treatment corridor within an area of the facility designed for efficient emergency evacuation and radiological containment.

The manual in its entirety is intended to facilitate a safe environment for radiological diagnostic testing and radiological treatment for terminal illness, which is inherent within the Oncology Department. As an example of our commitment, we've recently contracted with a new vendor to supply the facility's mobile X-Ray Machine due to an innovative design with materials that prevent the unintended leak of radiation to human tissue other than its specific intended area on the patient. These practices have established our commitment to providing the best in preventive planning to prevent unintended radiological contamination. Additionally, we invest in the most respected brands that provide state-of-the-art diagnostic imaging and testing equipment as well as equipment for treatment. Lesser hospitals will invest in older technology for their radiological testing and treatment programs, which emit higher levels of radiation.

Mission Statement

The primary and specialized patient hospital experience and overall health outcomes are central to our operations. Success is inherent to our unwavering commitment to ensuring extraordinary radiation protection within our environment where innovative radiation diagnostic testing and treatment programs are extensive and well monitored. Our mission is to establish and facilitate expeditious radiological treatment in a safe and controlled environment.

Historical Background Information on Radiation Protection

Comparatively, the literature on the topic of Radiation Protection is broad and certainly not isolated to the discussion of radiation exposure and mitigation practices within the hospital. Indeed, our goal is to provide a synopsis of the history regarding the modalities of radiation protection within the framework of hospital facilities and operations.

"The American Society for Radiation Oncologi' (ASTRO) and the FDA have launched radiation safety initiatives to reduce unnecessary exposure in patients, according to an article published earlier this year in the Journal of the American Medical Association. According to ASTRO, the patient protection plan "will improve safety and quality and reduce the chances of medical errors." Meanwhile, the FDA is launching an initiative to: promote the safe use of imaging devices for medical use, support informed clinical decision making and increase patients' awareness of their own exposure." (Colpas, 2010)

For purposes of comparison, we have decided to include here in the history section, an example of a radiation protection program from a rival hospital. "LaSalle Station developed and implemented an Integrated Exposure Reduction Plan (IERP) that resulted in outage exposure reduction of 41 man-rem and a 17 man-rem reduction in online exposure in 2006 alone. These savings are recurring, and continued implementation of the plan further reduces both outage and online exposure for subsequent years. LaSalle has been very successful at reducing exposure despite being a high source term plant. "High source term" means that the plant has high inventory of activated corrosion and wear products in the plant systems. Historically, exposure reduction was approached through traditional methods, e.g., shielding, flushing, and efficiency improvements. The station was not satisfied with their dose performance. Further investigation determined that most actions did not address the people or their behaviors. Ownership for dose reduction relied mostly with the RP organization, and was limited by significant cost for source term reduction projects." (Wolfe, 2008)

"A small team was formed to accelerate dose reduction. This team identified that although traditional dose reduction initiatives needed to continue, we were missing the biggest element in the equation -- the people. The team drafted a list of items to pursue. The group presented this to the Senior Leadership Team, who helped "fill in the gaps" for the focus areas. The site also performed breakout sessions with all employees to gather ideas to feed the Plan's focus areas. These ideas were prioritized by immediacy of impact and potential savings. Action items and due dates were assigned, tracked, and reported out in the Plan of the Day Meetings." (Wolfe, 2008)

"Additionally, the IERP Team meets monthly to review progress, identify new opportunities through the Issue Report process, and challenge upcoming activities. The addition of the Dynamic Learning Activity on Rad Worker Performance (a required training and practical exercise for every person on site who accesses the Radiologically Controlled Area), and the recognition programs for good performance. The outstanding attribute of this plan is the comprehensive nature and the focus on worker behaviors in addition to proven dose reduction techniques. The DERP is sponsored by the Work Control Director, but is supported by each of the functional areas. A major focus is placed on changing behaviors through training and observation. We found that attacking the problem from all angles with sitewide support allowed us to improve our performance quickly. Dose reduction is not owned by the Radiation Protection Department -- it's owned by the entire site." (Wolfe, 2008)

Additionally, health hazards associated with using lead shielding to minimize radiation exposure in nuclear medicine has recently drawn suspicion to cause health hazards. "Metallic lead is widely used as radiation shielding in research and development, nuclear medicine and radiology, and various manufacturing processes. Uncoated metallic lead is widely used a radiation shielding in research and development, nuclear medicine and radiology, and various manufacturing processes. The common use of lead shielding, however, may present an insidious health hazard due to lead dust. Field and laboratory measurements were collected to evaluate the distribution and removal of lead from radiation shielding material as well as to measure airborne exposures during large shielding emplacement projects." (Klien, Weilandics, 1996)

"At the initial stage of the use of atomic energy, up to the 1960's, the community of scientists and specialists on radiation protection performed enormous work on validating and ensuring the highest standards for radiation safety for the general public and for workers. The work of ICRP, NKDAR, UN, IAIA, and other international and national organizations played a large role in this work." (Arutyunyan, Bol'shov, Pavlovskii, 2009)

Department Radiation Safety Procedures/Policies

The GOAL of our department is to meet ALL compliance regulations regarding the maximum exposure levels of radiation to human tissue.

The department shall maintain at ALL times a General Manager who is responsible for the overall management of the Radiation Safety Program. Essentially, the Manager is responsible for maintaining departmental policies and procedures related to the maintenance of the program.

The department shall additionally hold as a consultant a Qualified Expert in the area of Radiation Shielding with experience in the functions including diagnostic shielding, related nuclear medicine applications, and radiotherapy.

The department shall maintain a Radiation Safety Officer to oversee the application of radiation shielding within all departments requiring radiation usage, which are departments located outside of normal radiological designated zones.

Structural shielding procedures along with lead blankets are to be used when exposing a patient to radiation treatments. The shielding is to be manipulated and applied as necessary to protect areas where the body is not subject to radiation treatment.

Radiation detection meters are to be used in areas outside of the designated radiological area to determine the amount of trace radiation within the environment. Usage of ALL portable X-ray units and other portable radiological emitting units must undergo the provision of structural shielding and have a radiation meter accompanied by a technician to determine safety compliance.

Emergency procedures in case of earthquake or hurricane or other natural disaster require the radiological equipment to be locked within the isolation vault, which is a radiological containment unit that is designed to protect the population from the release of radiation.

Future Trends in Radiation Protection

The international response to radiological exposure within the clinical environment has led to such measures including, the Norwegian Occupational Hygiene Society, which seeks to establish occupational exposure standards. (Vincent, 1998)

"Russia was one of the countries that led the way in setting occupational exposure standards during the early years, publishing its list of maximum allowable concentrations as early as the 1930s for about 900 substances to which workers may be exposed as gases, vapors, or aerosols. The development of Occupational Exposure Limits (OELs) in the form of maximum allowable concentrations (MACs) is driven by the concept of the "threshold hazardous effect. The… [END OF PREVIEW]

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