IRPA – Who are we?
IRPA is an international association of individual radiation protection practitioners joining through national or regional societies. Our members cover all fields of radiation protection, including practitioners in medical, nuclear and other industry sectors, regulators, government advisers and researchers. Our spectrum of members ranges from those in countries with a highly evolved radiation protection infrastructure to smaller countries struggling to develop basic levels of protection.
What do we do?
- We promote excellence in radiation protection through our Associate Societies and among radiation protection professionals to ensure that the highest standards of professional conduct, ethical values, skills and knowledge are applied for the benefit of society.
- We are the international voice of the radiation protection profession. We work with many international organisations, including ICRP, IAEA, WHO and ICNIRP, on the development of international recommendations, standards, and guidance, to put forward the views of the practitioners who will have to implement laws, rules and standards based on them.
- We share ideas across our membership and develop guidance on good practice in radiation protection and in organising Associate Societies.
- We organise Workshops, Seminars and Regional and International Congresses to contribute to the above aims and to provide education and training for our members.
- We support our Young Generation Network, where there is guidance on developing and supporting those entering our profession and providing the next generation of RP professionals.
- We encourage and support the development of radiation protection societies in countries where these do not exist to support the local practitioners.
How do we do it?
We seek the views of the profession on key topics of interest, monitor developing science and proposals (‘Horizon Scanning’) and establish international Task Groups to develop good practice and liaise with other international partners.
Through our excellent relations with a wide range of influential international organisations we are able to use this wealth of experience to provide a practical perspective into discussions on the development of protection philosophy, standards and international guidance. We aim to ensure that resulting outputs are practicable, balanced and proportionate.
On selected topics which are important to the radiation protection profession we prepare guidance documents which reflect good international practice. Existing guides address:
- A Code of Ethics for Radiation Protection Societies
- Stakeholder Engagement
- Principles for establishing a Radiation Protection Culture
- Certification of a Radiation Protection Expert
- Implementation of Eye Dose Monitoring and Eye Protection for Workers
- Effective Engagement with the Public on Radiation and Risk
- Supporting the ‘Young Generation’, including at each Regional and International Congress providing a ‘best presentation’ competition for the newer members of our profession.
Why (and How) should you engage with IRPA?
Through working with IRPA, radiation protection professionals and the national/regional Associate Societies play a major role in:
- Influencing the development of radiation protection practice and international standards
- Developing experience of excellence and good practice within the profession.
- Sharing radiation protection experiences at a range of IRPA-sponsored international meetings, including international and regional congresses and topic-specific discussions.
- Working with other radiation protection societies in your region to share best practice, common problems, address regional issues and establish important communication channels.
- Having access to IRPA and other Associate Society newsletters, bulletins and journals (either free of charge or at a reduced subscription rate)
- Improving understanding of how radiation protection issues are managed worldwide, and in turn how individual countries/regions can feed into and influence this process.
- Supporting the development of new or emerging radiation protection professional societies where these do not exist in order to embed good radiation protection practices, often in challenging circumstances.
Individual practitioners within Associate Societies are automatically members of IRPA and should support and encourage your RP society to actively engage in the IRPA programme. Through your society you can offer your individual expertise to join relevant IRPA activities. Also, IRPA may not currently be working on something that you consider important for the future of our profession, so it is up to you and your society to propose further topic work.
Current IRPA Activities
IRPA has many active work programmes, including:
- Radiation safety culture in medical facilities, and also in Higher Education, Research and Teaching (HERT)
- Implementation of Eye Lens dose measurement and management
- Enhancing public engagement on radiation and risk
- Reasonableness, Conservatism and the Graded Approach – ‘Practical Radiation Protection’
- Young Generation Network, giving support for ‘the future of our profession’.
- Radioactive Source Security
- Radiation Protection in Industries with NORM
- Non Ionising Radiation
We also issue a quarterly IRPA Bulletin, outlining key issues in radiation protection and the work of IRPA and the Associate Societies.
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