Details

Title Radioactive Materials, Waste and Transport Advice
Type Stage Two
Code HPE121
Requirement Optional

Module objective

By the end of this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST will be expected to gain the knowledge and experience required to gain a certificate of competence as a Radioactive Waste Adviser (RWA) from a Radioactive Waste Adviser Approval Board approved body. Employers who are permitted under the Environmental Permitting Regulations to hold or dispose of radioactive waste are required to take advice from a certified Radioactive Waste Adviser on compliance with the permit conditions. These cover areas such as management of radioactive waste, best available techniques to minimise radiological impact to the environment and radiological impact assessment. The Clinical Scientist in HSST will be able to critically appraise organisational governance for relevant radioactive waste and transport legislation and guidance, and advise the radiation employer on compliance with relevant regulations. The Clinical Scientist in HSST will demonstrate critical understanding of current research and its application to the performance, adaptation and mastery of a range of technical procedures. They will be expected to perform and master a range of technical, clinical and communication skills while consistently demonstrating the attitudes and behaviours required of a Consultant Clinical Scientist.

Knowledge and understanding

By the end of this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST will synthesise and critically apply their expert knowledge with respect to the safe management of radioactive waste in healthcare, spanning all areas required by the approved radioactive waste advice certification body to be awarded a Radioactive Waste Adviser certificate [1], including:

  • The legislative framework in the United Kingdom (UK).
  • The UK regulatory bodies and regulatory system with respect to the management and transport of radioactive materials, including the role of the Dangerous Goods Safety Adviser.
  • The underpinning knowledge related to the provision of radioactive waste advice on all aspects of relevant legislation and guidance with respect to the handling, storage, disposal and transport of radioactive materials.
  • The clinical environment that will underlie the formal RWA advice given.
  • The management of the transport of radioactive materials used in the treatment of patients or waste created during the treatment of patients, or associated sources used for calibration to be transported.
  • Radiological impact assessment methods.
  • Pathways by which radioactive discharges may lead to a public dose.
  • Bio-accumulation effects.
  • The conditions and limitations in environmental permits.
  • Record-keeping requirements and systems for radioactive materials and the transport of radioactive materials.
  • Investigation requirements for radiological incidents.
  • The reporting requirements and systems for radioactive sources, transport and discharges.
  • The sources of radioactive waste, waste types, waste classification and waste characterisation.
  • The principles of radioactive waste management: dilute and disperse, concentrate and contain, storage for decay and clearance from control.
  • Disposal options for radioactive waste.
  • The application of Best Available Techniques (BAT) methodology, and audit against BAT requirements, in relation to:
    • facility design;
    • facility operation, including abatement of discharges;
    • minimisation of risk;
    • radioactive waste management;
    • facility decommissioning.

Technical and clinical skills

By the end of this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST will be able to demonstrate a critical understanding of current research and its application to the performance, adaptation and mastery of a range of technical procedures, and will:

  • Develop and critically evaluate corporate radiation safety policy with respect to the safe handling, storage, disposal and transport of radioactive materials.
  • Critically appraise the policy and procedural documentation required under the relevant regulations with respect to the safe handling, storage, disposal and transport of radioactive materials, including the conditions, limitations and reporting requirements of environmental permits and the quality and environmental management systems in place.
  • Safely advise the radiation employer on all aspects of relevant environmental protection regulations, applicable exemption regimens, policies and guidance at a corporate level with respect to the safe handling, storage, disposal and transport of radioactive materials, including the requirements for record keeping to demonstrate compliance with environmental permits.
  • Identify, synthesise and evaluate differing and innovative options for management of radioactive waste with respect to:
    • sources of radioactive waste, waste types, waste classification and waste characterisation;
    • dilution and dispersal, concentration and containment, treatment, storage and clearance from control;
    • the waste hierarchy: avoidance, minimisation, reuse, recycle, disposal and transport;
    • the management of disused sealed sources: technical options and safety aspects.
  • Perform and critically appraise a radiological impact assessment to calculate doses to population groups and the environment, including practical assessment of discharges as appropriate, taking into account pathways of discharge and bio-accumulation effects.
  • Develop and critically appraise BAT documentation for a radiation facility, taking into account facility design, operation, including abatement of discharges, minimisation of risk, radioactive waste management and facility decommissioning.*
  • Critically appraise radioactive waste management systems with respect to accepted best practice (e.g. dilute and disperse, concentrate and contain, storage for decay and clearance from control) in accordance with the waste hierarchy: avoidance, minimisation, reuse, recycle and disposal.
  • Evaluate storage and treatment options for radioactive waste, including open and sealed sources.
  • Design and critically appraise the key considerations for a new facility with regard to the receipt, handling, storage, disposal and transport of radioactive materials.
  • Perform, analyse, report and present radioactive waste audits.
  • Advise on radioactive waste incidents where applicable, including performing calculations and giving advice for radiation doses received by patients, staff, or members of the public, root cause analysis and regulatory compliance (reporting, compliance with specific regulations).
  • Respond to radioactive waste and transport emergencies, being able to make timely decisions to keep doses to patients, staff, or members of the public as low as reasonably practicable.
  • Survey, for example, environmental contamination or effluent monitoring, including selection of appropriate monitoring and measuring equipment and reporting in accordance with appropriate standards.
  • Develop and critically appraise a suitable radiation protection programme for the transport of radioactive material.
  • Develop, implement, test and participate in adequate emergency procedures for the handling and transport of radioactive materials.
  • Develop and deliver training programmes on the safe handling, storage, disposal and transport of radioactive materials.

The Clinical Scientist in HSST will be expected to reflect on the challenges of applying research and innovative technologies to practice in relation to these procedures and suggest improvements, building on a critique of available evidence.

By the end of this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST will provide radioactive waste advice to healthcare organisations, radiation facilities, colleagues and patients across a range of clinical environments, including an emphasis on patient and user safety, understanding the context in which the advice is sought and the consequences of any advice given and will:

  • Communicate effectively with colleagues and patients.
  • Advise on radioactive waste incidents where applicable, including performing calculations and giving advice for radiation doses received by patients, staff, or members of the public, root cause analysis and regulatory compliance (reporting, compliance with specific regulations).
  • Respond to radioactive waste and transport emergencies, being able to make timely decisions to keep doses to patients, staff, or members of the public as low as reasonably practicable. Management of radioactive waste emergencies.

 

Attitudes and behaviours

By the end of this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST will be expected to evaluate their own response to both normal and complex situations, demonstrating the professional attributes and insights required of a Consultant Clinical Scientist working within the limits of professional competence, referring as appropriate to senior staff. They will also appreciate the impact of current clinical and scientific outcomes for the medical Radioactive Waste Adviser in relation to patients, members of staff and members of the public, and will:

  • Adhere to, and accept and work within current governance requirements applicable within an organisation, raising concerns when necessary.
  • Promote the importance of innovation in service and/or delivery, including the contribution of research and innovation in radiation protection to the NHS, business and the UK economy.
  • Engage service users, patients and the public to promote the positive impact of expert radioactive waste advice from a certified RWA.
  • Display an objective and unbiased approach.

Reference

1.         RPA 2000. The Competence Certification Schemes. Document RWA2. Instructions for the creation of the portfolio of evidence for RWA certification, published 19 December 2012. http://www.rpa2000.org.uk/images/stories/documents/rwa/docrwa2aph19dec12. doc

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