Current News

11 September 2019
Radiochemist Elizabeth Rona Recognized

Radiochemist Elizabeth Rona was recently recognized in The New York Times series Overlooked, which is "about remarkable people whose deaths, beginning in 1851, went unreported in The Times." The interesting article is available on The New York Times website (may have to register to see article).

Health Physics Society member Joel Lubenau noted that the list of persons with whom she collaborated reads like a who's who of notable early radioactivity researchers. He said Rona contributed a revealing article about early health physics practices (or the lack of them) to Health Physics, "Laboratory Contamination in the Early Period of Radiation Research," 37:6 (December 1979): 723-727.

6 September 2019
Call for Abstracts: HPS 2020 Midyear Meeting

Deadline: 27 September 2019

The 53rd Midyear Meeting of the Health Physics Society will be held 26–29 January in Bethesda, Maryland. Contributed abstracts are requested for sessions on the following topics:

  1. Accelerator
  2. Biokinetics/Bioeffects
  3. Decommissioning
  4. Emergency Planning/Response
  5. Environmental
  6. External Dosimetry
  7. Homeland Security
  8. Instrumentation
  9. Internal Dosimetry and Bioassay
  10. Medical Physics
  11. Military Health Physics
  12. Nonionizing
  13. Operational Health Physics
  14. Reactor Health Physics
  15. Regulatory/Legal Issues
  16. Risk Analysis
  17. Other Special Session (Specify)

Do you have an idea for a special session? Please contact 2020 Midyear Task Force Chair Megan Lobaugh with your request.

Please submit your abstract (including special session abstracts) by 27 September 2019.

5 September 2019
Continuing Education Committee


The Health Physics Society (HPS) Continuing Education Committee is looking for individuals to provide Continuing Education Lectures (CELs) and Professional Enrichment Programs (PEPs) at the upcoming 2020 HPS Midyear Meeting.

All of us aspire to be the best health physicist we can and look forward to the many opportunities for continuing education at meetings. The HPS Continuing Education Program continues to evolve as it relies upon all of you for its success—experts conveying their knowledge to better our profession.

If you have an idea for a CEL or PEP, send it to Elaine Marshall as soon as you can. Abstracts need to be submitted to the Secretariat to include in the registration forms by the end of September.

CEL and PEP instructors do receive some compensation for their work in putting together a course.

The Board of Directors is also working through the Continuing Education Committee to pilot livestreaming a continuing education lecture at the next annual meeting. Please let Elaine know if you might be interested in offering the lecture that would be livestreamed.

30 August 2019
September 2019 Events Listing

The September events listing has been posted on the Events page of the HPS website. Information on the following event is available:

NORM IX: Ninth International Symposium on Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material—The Conference of Radiation Control Program Directors (CRCPD), International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)

30 August 2019
September 2019 Short Course Listing

The September short course offerings have been posted on the Short Courses page of the HPS website. Information on the following courses is available:

MARSSIM—ORAU'S Professional Training Programs

Radiation Safety Officer (RSO) School and Refresher—RSO Services, Inc.

Radiation Safety Officer Training Course—Radiation Safety & Control Services, Inc.

Operation and Calibration of Instruments—Radiation Safety & Control Services, Inc.

29 August 2019
Editor's Pick for October Health Physics Journal

Health Physics Around the Globe

Brant Ulsh, CHP, PhD, Health Physics Editor in Chief

Last month, Health Physics highlighted the activities of our Canadian colleagues. This month, we go global. Khethiwe Margaret Sethole and her colleagues take us to South Africa with their article "The Level of Compliance With the Use of Personal Radiation Monitoring Devices by Qualified Radiographers at Provincial Hospitals in the City of Tshwane." Then it is off to Russia for M.O. Degteva and colleagues' "Enhancements in the Techa River Dosimetry System: TRDS-2016D Code for Reconstruction of Deterministic Estimates of Dose From Environmental Exposures". Next, to China for Lailai Qin and colleagues' "Evaluation of Dose Derived From HTO for Adults in the Vicinity of Qinshan Nuclear Power Plant." And finally, to the Middle East with Dr. Adnan Lahham and Haitham Ayyad's paper "Personal Exposure to Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Fields Among Palestinian Adults." The world is your oyster with the October issue of Health Physics.

(Note to HPS members: to access all Journal articles free, first log into Members Only on Then, under Resources for You [on right side of page], click the Journal 1999–present icon. This will take you directly to the Health Physics Journal page or, if you have not yet done the single sign-on procedure, you will be asked to "pair accounts"—answer yes and you should be done. If you want to know more about why this process is in place, please see the news item "New Journal Website Login" on HPS Members Only.)

28 August 2019
HPS Members in the News: Steve Sugarman

Summit Exercises and Training (SummitET), announces the promotion of Health Physics Society member Steve Sugarman to vice president of operations. Steve also holds the position of corporate health physicist, providing radiological subject-matter expertise.

More information is available in the SummitET press release.

28 August 2019
Medical Health Physics Section: Communication Advances in Radiation Education for Shielding (CARES)

Linda Kroger, Section Past President

In April 2019, the American Association of Physicists in Medicine (AAPM) published a position statement related to the use of gonadal and fetal shielding. By now, many of you have probably seen it. At that time, AAPM reached out to the Health Physics Society (HPS) for our support both by way of endorsement of the statement, which was granted, and for assistance on a newly established ad hoc committee, Communicating Advances in Radiation Education for Shielding (CARES). This ad hoc committee is charged with reviewing changes that would be occurring at facilities in terms of the use of shielding and developing training and educational materials for both health care professionals and the public. The committee is comprised of representatives from numerous organizations. Linda Kroger, past president of the HPS Medical Health Physics Section, volunteered to represent HPS on this committee. Recently, due to the vast array of differing opinions on the position statement and the possible challenges for implementation, both regulatory and otherwise, the AAPM issued an open letter to provide additional context for the statement and what is being done now. The AAPM has established an email address where individuals can send queries. In addition, HPS members can feel free to send their thoughts to Linda Kroger.

28 August 2019
Student Page Charge Waivers Available for Publishing in Health Physics or Operational Radiation Safety

If you are a student and prepared a poster or presentation for the annual meeting, you should consider submitting it for publication because it furthers your professional status and Health Physics has fee waivers for eligible students. The funding for this comes from a "special projects" initiative the Health Physics Society negotiated with our publisher. The funds are first come, first serve, until they are gone.

If your manuscript is accepted for publication, the waiver will cover page charges of $70 per printed page. These page charges help cover some costs of publication and are essential to the continuing operations of the Journal. After publication, 50 electronic reprints will be sent to the corresponding author.

Waivers cover only page charges; they do not cover any color-figure charges that might apply. If you require color on your figures, tables, or artwork, you will be charged $500 for the first color figure and $150 for each additional color figure. Note that these fees may change without notice.

Start your publishing career early for little to no cost. Health Physics Journal is a great opportunity to share your research results with the world. Additional information and a request for waiver form that can be submitted with your manuscript is available online.

27 August 2019
Pioneer in Radiation Studies Liane Russell Dies

Dr. Liane B. Russell, 95, died in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, on 20 July 2019. Russell studied the effects of radiation, including x rays, on the developing embryo and fetus. For her "outstanding contributions to genetics and radiation biology" she received the Department of Energy Enrico Fermi Award in 1994. Read more in a article by Brigit Katz here.

26 August 2019
August CHP Corner

Dan Sowers, CHP Corner Editor

While the CHP Corner is produced by the American Academy of Health Physics (AAHP), it is relevant to all health physicists, not just those who are certified!

The August 2019 issue of the CHP Corner has been posted to the AAHP website. This edition includes:

  • Thoughts on Chernobyl.
  • Health physicist salary survey announcement.
  • Certification by the American Board of Medical Physics.
  • What is an HP?
  • A call to get involved in your profession, Society, and/or Academy!
14 August 2019
NNSA Administrator Lisa E. Gordon-Hagerty Interviews, Part II

Kelly Classic, Web Ops Editor in Chief

Here is Part II of our interview with National Nuclear Security Administration Administrator Lisa E. Gordon-Hagerty, who recently spoke at the 2019 Health Physics Society (HPS) annual meeting in Orlando.

Part II Questions

What advice would you give to younger health physicists with regard to their career?

HPS has chapters all around the world. Are there things we can do as a society to further help the NNSA's mission? (Missions: maintaining the stockpile, nonproliferation, counter terrorism, powering the Navy)

It appears that safeguarding the nuclear arsenal has historically been one of NNSA's roles and that you have added a focus on the prevention of RDDs partly through the exchange of source-based equipment (like cesium irradiators) to x-ray-based irradiators. How has the focus on RDDs changed the role of radiation protection/security professionals at NNSA?

You had indicated in your talk that there is a goal by 2027 to be cesium-irradiator free. Are you on target?

Is there anything else you'd like to share with HPS membership?

14 August 2019
Homeland Security Section
2019 Service Award

John J. Lanza received the Homeland Security Section's 2019 Service Award at the recent HPS meeting in Orlando. Submitted photo

14 August 2019
Health Physics Managing Editor Position Opening

Brant Ulsh, Health Physics Editor in Chief

The search is on for the Health Physics Journal's next managing editor.

Job description: Manage the flow of papers for Health Physics from acceptance to final publication, including the following tasks:

  1. Abide by the dates set in the publication schedule.
  2. Log accepted manuscripts into the "Manuscript Tracking" spreadsheet, and use that record to follow the manuscript through to publication.
  3. Choose content for each month's issue.
  4. Choose cover art for each month's issue with the help of the editor in chief.
  5. Edit each manuscript.
  6. Edit each proof.
  7. Work with the publisher (Wolters Kluwer) to prepare entire issue for publication.
  8. Issue Freedom to Administer for each issue to the publisher to proceed with publication once all corrections are made to the issue.
  9. Send a copy of the cover from the final proof every month to the Health Physics Society (HPS) newsletter editor.


The managing editor (ME) works with the editor in chief and the editorial assistant to publish monthly issues of Health Physics. This position is currently performed via teleworking on a long-term contract basis and so does not require relocation. The current level of effort is about 35 hours per week (sometimes a little more, sometimes a little less).

It is essential that candidates have editorial experience and a strong background in English. Technical editing and proofreading experience are highly desirable, as is experience teleworking with a high degree of independence. Familiarity with radiation terms and communication style would be a plus, but is not expected or required.

Health Physics, first published in 1958, has provided a wide variety of radiation safety professionals including health physicists, nuclear chemists, and physicians with interest in nuclear and radiological medicine to stay on the cutting edge of scientific and technological advances in the field of radiation safety for these and other disciplines in science and engineering. The Journal provides features that allow readers to understand more about the topics that interest them. These features include original papers, technical notes, articles on advances in practical applications, and editorials. We also publish correspondence that reports on the latest findings in theoretical practical and applied disciplines of epidemiology and radiation effects, radiation biology and radiation medicine, and fate and transport of radioactive materials in biological systems, to name a few. Monthly issues each typically contain about 10 technical articles comprising approximately 100 pages of technical content. More information on the Journal can be found on the Health Physics Journal website.

The Journal is a publication of the HPS. The HPS, formed in 1956, is a scientific organization of professionals who specialize in radiation safety. Its mission is to support its members in the practice of their profession and to promote excellence in the science and practice of radiation safety. More information about the HPS can be found on the HPS website.

1 August 2019
Upcoming HPS Meetings

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.

53rd Midyear Meeting: 26–29 January 2020; Bethesda, Maryland

65th Annual Meeting: 4–9 July 2020; National Harbor, Maryland

66th Annual Meeting: 25–29 July 2021; Phoenix, Arizona

67th Annual Meeting: 16–21 July 2022; Spokane, Washington

1 August 2019
Military Health Physics Section
2019 Superior Civilian Service Award

Robert W. Young, PhD (second from right) receiving the Military Health Physics Section's 2019 Superior Civilian Service Award at the HPS meeting last month. Bob is joined by (left to right) LTC John Bliss, US Army (Ret.), Bob's wife, Ann Parker, and Military Health Physics Section President Colonel John Cuellar, MS, US Army. Photo courtesy of Casper Sun

1 August 2019
Military Health Physics Section
2019 Young Military Health Physicist
of the Year Award

Major Matthew Stokley, MS, US Army, right, receiving the Military Health Physics Section's 2019 Young Military Health Physicist of the Year Award from LTC Jama D. Vanhorne-Sealy, MS, US Army at the HPS meeting last month in Orlando. Photo courtesy of Casper Sun

1 August 2019
Military Health Physics Section
2019 John C. Taschner Leadership Award

Colonel Robert N. Cherry, Jr., US Army (Ret.), left, receives the Military Health Physics Section's 2019 John C. Taschner Leadership Award at the Orlando HPS meeting last month. The award is presented by Military Health Physics Section President Colonel John Cuellar, MS, US Army. Photo courtesy of Casper Sun

1 August 2019
HP Brothers at 2019 HPS Annual Meeting

What's the likelihood of three brothers all following their father into the field of health physics? The Fairchilds are also all members of the Health Physics Society and were together at the annual meeting in Orlando. Left to right, Greg Fairchild is a radiation health officer with the US Navy, Robert Fairchild II is a health physicist and deputy laser safety officer at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and Brian Fairchild is the assistant health physics and safety manager at the University of Missouri Research Reactor (MURR). Their father, Frank Fairchild, has retired after working almost 40 years as a health physicist. Photo courtesy of Debbie Gilley

1 August 2019
Health Physics Society Board at 2019 HPS Annual Meeting

Members of the HPS Board, left to right, Secretary Sander Perle, Director Kendall Berry, Director Tim Taulbee, Director Mike Mahathy, President Eric Goldin, Director Jeffrey Whicker, Director Jan Braun, Treasurer Steven King, and Treasurer-elect Ali Simpkins. Not pictured: Past President Nolan Hertel, Executive Director Brett Burk, Director Thomas Johnston, Director Thomas Morgan, and Director Latha Vasudevan. Photo courtesy of Casper Sun

1 August 2019
2019 Health Physics Society Fellows

Members of the 2019 class of HPS fellows, left to right, Timothy A. DeVol, Brant Ulsh, James P. Tarzia, Paul K. Blake, Scott Schwahn, and J. Stewart Bland. Not pictured: Elyse Thomas. Photo courtesy of Casper Sun

1 August 2019
Illinois Tech Health Physics Program at 2019 HPS Annual Meeting

Faculty members and staff from the Illinois Tech Health Physics Program hosted its growing family at the 2019 HPS Annual Meeting on 9 July. Twenty-plus students and alumni, including five sponsored under the HPS Student Travel Grant, attended the meeting. The meeting venues offered students a great opportunity to learn the profession and to enjoy the friendship. Front row, left to right, Jeff Reilly, Samantha Johnson, Lexi Detweiler, Hanna Bunting, Chad Mullins, Trish Hander, Valerie Grayson, Liz Friedman, and S.Y. Chen; back row, left to right, Shirley Xu, Robert Litman, Julia Sober, Sam Schumacher, Tim Gildea, Matt Bruette, Ian Hoppie, Trent Yadro, Jonathan Haas, Phillip Campbell, Rick Whitman, and Dewoun Hayes. Illinois Tech alumni attendees not present in the photo: Mirela Kirr, Eugene Jablonski, Bob May, and Erin Evans. Photo courtesy of S.Y. Chen

1 August 2019
Chelation Special Session at 2019 HPS Annual Meeting

Presenters at the chelation special session at the HPS meeting in Orlando included, left to right, Mitch Findley (MJW Corporation), Rebecca Abergel (Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory), Steve Sugarman (Summit Exercises and Training), John Klumpp (Los Alamos National Laboratory), Luiz Bertelli (Los Alamos National Laboratory), Tom LaBone (MJW Corporation), Deepesh Poudel (Los Alamos National Laboratory), Ray Guilmette (Ray Guilmette and Associates), Anne Van der Meeren (CEA, France), Sara Dumit (Los Alamos National Laboratory), and Ron Goans (MJW Corporation). Photo courtesy of Moira Dooley

1 August 2019
Public Information Committee at 2019 HPS Annual Meeting

The Public Information Committee met at the HPS Meeting in Orlando. Those in attendance were, left to right, Ali Simpkins, Steve Sugarman, Emily Caffrey, Dan Sowers, and Sara Dumit. Photo courtesy of Ali Simpkins

31 July 2019
Interview With NNSA Administrator Lisa E. Gordon-Hagerty

Kelly Classic, Web Ops Editor in Chief

National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) Administrator Lisa E. Gordon-Hagerty recently spoke at the 2019 Health Physics Society (HPS) Annual Meeting in Orlando. After her talk, she agreed to be interviewed by Deepesh Poudel and me (and videoed by Craig Little). We broke the interview into two parts, one for this newsletter and one for the next.

We always learn something new when we create videos. In this case, we learned that Deepesh and I were either a bit too far from the microphone or need to speak up. Because it is difficult to hear us in the video, I've listed the questions below. We will do better next time!

Hope you enjoy.

Part I Questions

How did you end up in the profession of health physics?

Your plenary presentation centered around an aging workforce and an effort to recruit more young people into health physics/radiation protection fields. For several years, HPS has been talking to folks on Capitol Hill about funding for the Integrated Universities Program—sometimes successfully, sometimes not. How do you think we, NNSA and HPS, can work together on collaborative initiatives to draw more students into health physics programs?

We've read about NNSA's impact on removing the use of highly enriched uranium that is used for shielding Moly generators that are used to obtain 99mTc for medical procedures. This is one of the ways of reducing possible access to nuclear materials that could be used for weapons. Are there other efforts like that?

News archive