Dan Sowers, CHP Corner Editor
The November 2020 issue of the CHP Corner is available to all on the American Academy of Health Physics website. This issue provides guidance for exam applicants who deferred last year and for those recertifying. We also take a look at some career highlights of Zach Tribbett, our November CHP in the Spotlight.
Register Before 31 December 2020 to View Technical Sessions and Earn Credits
The 10 September–21 October 2020 Health Physics Society (HPS) Virtual Workshop was a great success. If you missed it, you still have time to register for one or all of the technical sessions. Registration ends 31 December 2020, but if you register before then, you will still be able to view the content into the new year. If you previously registered, this will not impact your ability to continue to access the content.
The Professional Enrichment Program (PEP) sessions will still be available for purchase, but you must be a member of the HPS to register and access these sessions after 31 December 2020. If you registered before then, you will still be able to view the content into the new year, whether or not you are a member.
Videos are now available of the annual Chapter Council Meeting and Section Council Meeting, which were hosted by the Health Physics Society virtually on 18–19 November 2020. You can view the meetings to see what you may have missed.
The International Radiation Protection Association (IRPA) has noted the passing of Rupprecht Maushart, a Health Physics Society (HPS) member who played a key role in founding IRPA. Rupprecht, 90, died on 17 November 2020. An In Memoriam piece will be posted on the HPS website at a future date.
Emily Caffrey, Committee Chair
Hot Off the Press—A New Video on Nonionizing Radiation
The Health Physics Society (HPS) Public Information Committee (PIC), in conjunction with Divine Media & Co., has finished the third short video for the Ask The Experts website and our YouTube channel. This video gives a brief overview of nonionizing radiation and helps the public to understand what kind of radiation comes from their cell phone, laptop, and that new cell tower being built near their home, along with what the potential health effects are. We also take the time to dispel some common myths about this type of radiation.
Please share this video with your friends and family and post it to your social media. Our goal is to make the HPS the premier organization for all radiation-related information, and we need your help. By sharing HPS content you can further our reach and increase our credibility.
And don't forget—we also have the Pregnancy and Radiation video, on the risks to an unborn baby from medical imaging procedures on the mother, and the Risks of X-Ray Procedures video, on risks from medical exposures.
As always, the PIC is continuously looking for new and innovative ways to engage the public and provide useful, scientifically accurate, and understandable information. We welcome any suggestions from the HPS membership on activities we should consider undertaking, and if you are interested in being involved, please contact Emily Caffrey.
Emily Caffrey, 2021 Midyear Task Force Chair
Dates have been finalized for "A Fresh Perspective"—the Health Physics Society's first-ever workshop. The workshop will be held 23–26 May 2021 at Clemson University in beautiful South Carolina. But wait, that's not all! The Professional Development School "Practical Implementation of Internal Dosimetry" will be held before the meeting, 21–23 May 2021, also at Clemson University. Make plans now to attend both. Lodging recommendations and registration information will be coming out in early 2021.
Remember, this workshop replaces the traditional midyear meeting and promises to be a place where early career members can share experiences, foster common goals, and gain valuable contacts. Students will have the opportunity to learn about the job market and career opportunities from the unique perspective of early career health physicists. Of course, all are welcome to attend and participate in the workshop.
We are looking for abstracts on the following topics:
- Applied Health Physics
- Regulatory and Legal Issues
- Medical Health Physics
- Environmental Health Physics
- Radiation Dosimetry
- Other Special Session (specify)
Do you have an idea for a special session for this workshop? Please contact Midyear Task Force Chair Emily Caffrey.
Please submit your abstract soon—the deadline is 5 December 2020.
One of the tools available on the Health Physics Journal's website is the Most Viewed tab. It is on the right side of the web page, and this is where you will find the recent articles your colleagues are interested in. Take a look and see what everybody is reading!
Brant Ulsh, CHP, PhD, Health Physics Editor in Chief
In the December issue of the Journal, we remember and celebrate the life of Michael T. Ryan, the editor in chief of Health Physics from 1999 to 2017. Mike touched the life of every member of the Health Physics Society through his work leading the journal and as a mentor, colleague, and friend of many of us. As 2020 draws to a close, take a moment to read the memoriam written by the Journal's managing editor and Mike's wife, Mary Gene Ryan, and celebrate a life well lived.
The 2022 International Radiation Protection Association (IRPA) North American Congress Executive Committee, led by Dr. Nolan Hertel, met on 10 November 2020 to officially kick off the planning for the first-ever IRPA North American congress. The committee is composed of Hertel, Eric Goldin, John Cardarelli, Matt McFee, Ed Waller (Canadian Radiation Protection Association), Chris Clement (IRPA), Shaheen Dewji (American Nuclear Society), Irina Popova (IRPA), Kathy Held (National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements), and Hector R. Vega-Carrillo (Mexican Society of Radiation and Dosimetry).
The congress will be held 20–23 February 2022 in St. Louis, Missouri. The congress will offer a strong program and courses for professional enrichment. We will be providing more detail in the weeks ahead.
The sessions from the highly successful virtual workshop have been recorded and are posted on the HPS website. You can still register, watch the individual sessions using the video demand, and receive certificates of attendance.
Register for any or all of the technical sessions or PEPs on the 2020 HPS Virtual Workshop website.
To access the videos you registered for, please go to the virtual workshop video page and enter your 2020 HPS Virtual Meeting invoice number, which can be found on your payment receipt. If you do not have your invoice number, please click on the link on the access page for having it mailed to you.
If you have any questions, please contact us by email.
International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP) Publication 144: Dose Coefficients for External Exposures to Environmental Sources is now available. This publication presents radionuclide-specific organ and effective dose-rate coefficients for members of the public resulting from environmental external exposures to radionuclide emissions of both photons and electrons, calculated using computational phantoms representing the ICRP reference newborn, 1-year-old, 5-year-old, 10-year-old, 15-year-old, and adult males and females.
Interested parties can access the abstract and basic information through ICRP website, where there is also a link to access the full report via the ICRP publisher, SAGE UK.
Organisers of the15th International Congress of the International Radiation Protection Association (IRPA 15) are working diligently to bring the best possible virtual experience to those who are not able to travel to Seoul in January. This first-ever virtual offering of an IRPA congress will appeal to many radiation protection professionals around the world, especially those who have not been able to travel to previous IRPA international congresses. Recognising that online participants expect to pay less, registration fees have been reduced. This, along with no need to cover travel costs, makes participation in IRPA 15 a very cost-effective way to engage with the international radiation protection community.
Joel O. Lubenau has written, along with Edward R. Landa, Radium City, A History of America's First Nuclear Industry. Published in 2019 by the Senator John Heinz History Center, the 186-page book includes a foreword by J. Samuel Walker, 11 chapters, 33 pages of notes, a 14-page bibliography, and 149 illustrations, both black and white and color, including many historical photographs.
In 1913, Standard Chemical Company (SCC) of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, became the first American company to commercially produce radium, and by 1921 SCC produced more radium than any other company in the world. That year, Marie Curie received a gift at the White House of one gram of radium, costing $100,000, from the Women of America. SCC produced the gram and, afterwards, Curie visited the company's plants. This book is an account of how two brothers, James J. and Joseph M. Flannery, undertakers-turned-industrialists, twice succeeded in making once rare metals, vanadium and radium, in commercially available quantities. Vanadium steel made Ford's Model T possible and the vanadium enterprise provided the business model for producing and marketing radium. SCC played a major role in promoting the medical use of radium in America. Medical radium paved the way for today's use of radioactive material in medicine, an important legacy. But there were other legacies—the effects of exposure to radium on worker health and environmental consequences of mining, production, and refining of radium. The government had a prominent role even dating to the earliest days of the company when it threatened to compete with SCC. And yes, Pittsburgh was—briefly—nicknamed "Radium City."
Radium City, A History of America's First Nuclear Industry is available for download at no cost on the Heinz History Center website.
Add the dates of the following Health Physics Society meetings to your calendar. Check the Meetings and Conferences page of the website for the most current information.
66th Annual Meeting: 25–29 July 2021; Phoenix, Arizona
67th Annual Meeting: 16–21 July 2022; Spokane, Washington
First Annual Workshop: May 2021; Clemson University, Clemson, South Carolina; "A Fresh Perspective"
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is looking for highly qualified candidates for the position Radiation Protection Unit Head in the Radiation Safety and Monitoring Section. This is an important position for implementation of the IAEA radiation safety program. More information and a job application are available on the IAEA website. The closing date is 13 November 2020. Women and candidates from developing countries are strongly encouraged to apply.
The November Products and Services offerings have been posted on the Products and Services page of the HPS website. Information on the following products and services is available:
Radiation Dosimetry Services—PL Medical Dosimetry Services
The November short course offerings have been posted on the Short Courses page of the HPS website. Information on the following courses is available:
Applied Health Physics I – Fundamental Concepts and Detector Technologies—ORAU's Professional Training Programs
Medical Radiation Safety Officer Training—ORAU's Professional Training Programs
Radiation Safety Officer Training—ORAU's Professional Training Programs
Many of you know and have worked with Fred Baes, our current Health Physics Society (HPS) webmaster. Serving in this position for over 20 years, Fred brought HPS into the virtual world. At the end of last year, Fred decided it was time to move on, and he will be retiring as of 31 December 2020. All of the Web Ops team wishes him the very best in his new ventures.
To fill this void, HPS President Eric Goldin formed an ad hoc committee to search for a new webmaster. The committee was chaired by Web Ops Editor in Chief Barbara Hamrick and included current Webmaster Fred Baes, Treasurer Ali Simpkins, Society Operations Editor and Media Liaison Craig Little, and staff members Heide Rohland and Jill Drupa from Burk & Associates, Inc. Well over 100 résumés were reviewed, and we selected a small number to interview, based on the specific technical skills enumerated in the résumés. In the end, the committee unanimously recommended Ramesh Reddy Bobbu to the HPS Executive Committee.
Ramesh was brought up in the temple town of Tirupati in Andhra Pradesh, India, and received a bachelor of engineering in computer science prior to making his home in the United States in 2002. He has years of experience as a developer, support specialist, server administrator, and team leader. He will be working very closely with Fred over the next two months to learn all the unique aspects of the HPS website and help keep us connected to the world.
Ramesh, his wife, his daughter (5 years old), and his son (2 years old) currently reside in Virginia. Coincidentally, both his children share the same birthday, which is coming up in the next week. Please welcome Ramesh to the HPS family. He can be reached through firstname.lastname@example.org. We hope that all will be able to meet him in person at the 2021 HPS Annual Meeting currently planned for Phoenix, Arizona, 25–29 July 2021.
The International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP) draft reports "Occupational Intakes of Radionuclides: Part 5" and "Occupational Radiological Protection in Brachytherapy" are available on ICRP's Current Consultations page. All individuals and organizations are encouraged to be part of the consultation process and submit comments. Comments must be made by 15 January 2021 and 22 January 2021, respectively.
International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP) Publication 143: Paediatric Computational Reference Phantoms is now available. Visit the Publications page on the ICRP website to see all publications available for purchase, as well as those that are free to access.
The National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements (NCRP) has published NCRP Commentary 30, Using Personal Monitoring Data to Derive Organ Doses for Medical Radiation Workers, With a Focus on Lung. The publication overview is also available on the NCRP website.
NCRP Commentary 30 is a comprehensive analysis of the issues and approach for estimating organ doses from individual monitoring data for medical radiation workers. It expands on the general guidance in NCRP Report No. 178, Deriving Organ Doses and Their Uncertainty for Epidemiological Studies, by presenting organ dose conversion coefficients specific for several radiation exposure settings found in health care facilities.
Estimating radiation risk from epidemiologic studies of exposed individuals is challenging and depends on estimates of the dose received. Uncertainties are present in all estimates of dose, and exposures of medical radiation workers are particularly challenging because of the introduction and use of protective shielding, the rapid changes in medical technologies over time, and the propensity for individuals to have exposures in many facilities over the course of their careers.
NCRP Commentary 30 describes an approach for using personal monitoring data to estimate lung and other organ doses and highlights specific precautions applicable to epidemiologic study of medical radiation workers. This approach and information are valuable as support for the Million Person Study (MPS) of Radiation Workers and Veterans, as a compilation of the historical elements of dosimetry, and to support ongoing estimates of risk for male and female populations.