A Security Primer for Health Physicists


B. Dodd, M. Soo Hoo


The intersection of safety and security of radioactive sources has created a situation in which two similar, but different, professional groups now have to work closely together. This has been characterized as an "arranged marriage" between people who come from different cultural backgrounds and who speak different languages. Consequently, in many organizations, the arranged marriage has started off turbulently with little love, frequent fights, and many misunderstandings. One of the reasons for this is that the two cultures use the same words but with different meanings. Another reason is that the cultural mindsets of the two groups of professionals are different. If bridges are to be built, as we move toward a common goal of protecting against the malevolent use of radioactive sources, there needs to be some explanation of the one in the words of the other. This paper attempts to explain security (particularly as it relates to radioactive sources) in a way that health physicists can understand.


This abstract was presented at the 38th Annual Midyear Meeting, "Materials Control and Security: Risk Assessment, Handling, and Detection", Materials Control and Security in University and Medical Facilities Session, 2/13/2005 - 2/16/2005, held in New Orleans, LA.

Index of Midyear Meeting Abstracts