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Myths & Facts about Radiation Safety and AERB approvals

 

Myth 1 :

Only Radiology technicians working regularly with X-Ray based machines need to wear TLD badges

Fact :

All ‘Radiation Workers’, whether technicians, doctors, nurses or any other staff who are in close contact with equipment like X-Ray, C-Arm, CT etc. and are exposed to radiation on a regular basis need to be monitoring their radiation exposure levels and hence wear TLD badges.

 

Myth 2 :

A ‘Radiation Worker’ working in multiple facilities should wear the same badge to all the places of work so as to assess their ‘cumulative dose’

Fact :

Every worker must have separate badges for each facility. This is because AERB holds the hospital or diagnostic facility responsible for managing the radiation exposure. Hence, they need to be able to identify not only the worker, but also the facility. At the time of applying for additional TLD badge, each applicant must mention their other facility badges reference also. This is the way AERB integrates all the badges of each individual and assesses the ‘cumulative dose’ for each individual.

 

Myth 3 :

Just wearing the new TLD badge issued by every quarter by AERB, protects me from radiation and measures the dose, no need to return old badge

Fact :

Once a Radiation worker receives the next TLD badge from AERB, they MUST return the old badge so that AERB can measure their radiation exposure so far and take preventive actions if the exposure is higher than prescribed levels. Some people believe that since they have paid for all the badges, they are entitled to keep all of them. However, this defeats the very purpose of radiation safety. Please be aware that by not sending the TLD badge to AERB for monitoring the dosage you may be only harming yourself. Just wearing the new badge will not protect you.  

 

Myth 4 :

Layout approval by AERB is the same as License

Fact :

Both the equipment as well as the room layout should independently meet AERB approval. It is possible that while layout and construction of the room where the radiation equipment would be housed, meets AERB norms, the equipment itself is not in the AERB approved list and Vis versa.

 

Myth 5 :

Procurement license obtained from AERB, prior to purchase of equipment is the final license.

Fact :

The first step of the process involves getting approval for layout from AERB. After that a ‘procurement license’ must be obtained prior to purchase of equipment from AERB along with NOC if the same is to be imported. Based on the procurement license the authorised manufacturer/supplier can supply and ‘install’ the equipment on the hospital premises. Once the equipment is installed, the manufacturer needs to upload the installation report as a third step in the process. Finally based on the installation report, the hospital needs to apply and obtain the actual AERB license for the equipment. Most people stop after the installation thinking that is all that needs to be done.

 

Myth 6 :

There is no need to register online on eLORA, If you have hardcopy of the layout approval/ license

Fact :

AERB earlier used to issue its approval in hardcopy. However, one needs to register the institution and the specific equipment online now, even if they have approval in hardcopy.

 

Myth 7 :

Once I have paid for AERB registration services, I will get the AERB approval/ license in due course of time.

Fact :

AERB does not charge any money for approvals or granting licenses. A hospital can themselves register on eLORA and add their equipment along with required documents. However, very often hospitals think it is a simple easily manageable form and go for the lowest cost service agencies, which disappear after collecting the initial fee, without completing required processes. If the hospital needs assistance in going through the process and they have paid a third-party agency for the services, it is purely for their services and hence they should engage with agencies with sufficient knowledge and expertise of the AERB requirements.

 

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