Training of interventional cardiologists in radiation protection--the IAEA's initiatives.
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has initiated a major international initiative to train interventional cardiologists in radiation protection as a part of its International Action Plan on the radiological protection of patients. A simple programme of two days' training has been developed, covering possible and observed radiation effects among patients and staff, international standards, dose management techniques, examples of good and bad practice and examples indicating prevention of possible injuries as a result of good practice of radiation protection. The training material is freely available on CD from the IAEA. The IAEA has conducted two events in 2004 and 2005 and number of events are planned in 2006. The survey conducted among the cardiologists participating in these programmes indicates that over 80% of them were attending such a structured programme on radiation protection for the first time. As the magnitude of X-ray usage in cardiology grows to match that in interventional radiology, the standards of training on radiation effects, radiation physics and radiation protection in interventional cardiology should also match those in interventional radiology.
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