When you're starting plans for a new diagnostic facility or imaging area of a medical office, implementing adequate nuclear shielding is important for maintaining a healthy environment for your staff and visitors alike. Radiation control and nuclear shielding is a critical part of setting up any diagnostic facility that uses nuclear and radiological imaging, as building codes will not permit you from operating without stringent controls on space used for imaging. But because it is vital to protect the health of your radiological technicians, general office staff, and patients or visitors coming to your office from radiating emissions, you need to know how to implement adequate nuclear shielding in your diagnostic facility.
Using Lead as a Barrier
According to the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission, "time, distance, and shielding" are the simplest preventative measures you can take when dealing with radiation-emitting substances. Though a short period of time during testing can prevent patients from being exposed to radiation that is harmful, cumulative effects can be seen in technicians and office staff that have to continually work with radiation on a day-to-day basis. And because distance is not a factor that can be avoided when working in diagnostic facilities, an emphasis on shielding has to be your first priority.
For medical offices, hospitals, or other diagnostic facilities, using lead as a barrier provides a cost-effective source of nuclear shielding that can be integrated in both building materials and contact protection alike. Contact protection includes temporary aprons and shields that are placed upon patients or technicians, and most often, they include a sheet of lead to cover and protect tissues not being analyzed for diagnostic reasons. But though a lead apron is an integral part of the shielding you should have on-hand, you need to first build a safer room or facility where radiation-emitting diagnostic technology will be used.
When starting with structural inclusions in a new diagnostic facility, consider lead bricks, used even in protection around nuclear power plants, as a barrier source for new construction. Lead-lined plywood, drywall, doors, door and window frames, and even laminated glass are all materials that should form the basis for lab and exam rooms where nuclear and radiological imaging take place. Where drywall meets drywall in corners and edges, you also need to be using lead angles to make sure radiation is not emitting from even the smallest surface area of your facility.
Beyond these structural inclusions you need to set up a new facility used for nuclear and radiological imaging, you should take adequate precautions in using caution labels for the room, equipment, and waste receptacles used, so accidental exposure can be reduced wherever possible. If you take the right measures to reduce exposure to radiation at your medical facility through shielding, you can do your best to create a healthier and safer environment for everyone involved.
For more information about nuclear shielding, contact a company like Nuclear Lead Co., Inc.