Draft Report for Consultation: Radiological Protection in Veterinary Practice

The draft Radiological Protection in Veterinary Practice is now available for public consultation. We welcome comments from individuals and organisations. The draft document can be downloaded from the ICRP website. Comments must be submitted through the ICRP website no later than March 11, 2022.

Abstract

Veterinary use of radiation in the diagnosis, management, and treatment of disease has expanded and diversified, as have the corresponding radiological protection concerns. Radiological exposure of personnel involved in veterinary procedures, and where applicable of assisting members of the public, such as owners or handlers, has always been included within the system of radiological protection. Veterinary practice is now explicitly addressed as the modern complexities associated with this practice warrant dedicated consideration, and there is a need for clarifying and strengthening the application of radiological protection principles in this area. Moreover, consistent with the pursuit of a more holistic approach in radiological protection is the consideration and integration of protection beyond humans to include the environment and the life within it. Humans share the biosphere with the flora and fauna of the environment as well as livestock, companion animals, working animals, etc. The Commission therefore now recommends that the system of radiological protection be applied in veterinary practice principally for the protection of humans but also with explicit attention to the protection of the exposed animals. Additionally, consideration should be given to the risk of potential contamination of the environment associated with applications of nuclear medicine in veterinary practice. This report focuses primarily on justification and optimisation in veterinary practice along with the underlying ethical values, and it sets the scene for more detailed guidance to follow in the future recommendations. It is intended for a wide-ranging audience, including radiological protection professionals, veterinary staff, students, education and training providers, and members of the public as an introduction to the issues surrounding radiological protection in veterinary practice.

ICRP routinely solicits comments on most draft documents prior to publication, with the exception of those that are basically compilations of computed values such as specific absorbed fraction values or dose conversion factors.

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Draft Document