Working with Radiation? You need to read this … no, seriously …
by Max Amurao, Director, Clinical Radiation Safety Programs

Personnel dosimeters (radiation badges) are used by faculty, staff, and students to gauge the level of radiation dose one may have accumulated over a period of time. Most individuals are issued badges by EH&S which are exchanged quarterly, but some are on a monthly badge exchange cycle.

If you work with radiation, wouldn’t you want to know how much radiation dose you received while working? (Hint – the correct answer is “Yes”).  The most efficient way of knowing your occupational dose is by properly wearing your dosimeter and returning the dosimeter soon after the wear period.

Properly wearing the badge you say? The picture below will give you an idea:

Properly wearing Badges

After being returned by the wearer, the badges are sent to a laboratory for analysis. The badge data is evaluated by the University’s Radiation Safety Officer (RSO) to verify that doses are consistent with ALARA principles and below regulatory limits. This is the most important reason for returning all badges at the designated end of the wear period. Timely return is important to ensure appropriate action can be taken to reduce future exposure, if warranted.

Do:      Wear dosimeters during procedures involving radioactive materials or x-rays.
            Return badges at the end of the wear period.
            Report lost badges and fill out a lost badge form.­
Don’t:  Share or discard badges.
            Bring badges home or use the badge at another place of work.

Aren’t you glad you read this article and clearly understand how following proper radiation dosimetry protocol is in your best interest?   (Hint – the correct answer is “Yes” again). 

sweat Editorial Staff: Kathleen Crowley, Chris Pettinato, Chris Pitoscia
Graphics, Design, Lay-out: Jean Lee
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