"Facilitating the safe use of radiation and radioactive materials
at the University of South Alabama"
The goal of University of South Alabama's Radiation Safety Department is to promote the safe and efficient use of radiation throughout the university system.
Objectives toward this goal include (but are not limited to):
1. education of radiation safety to users of radiation (or any interested parties),
2. quality control checks in all areas of radiation use, and
3. assure the USA System is in compliance with Federal & State regulations.
The National Council on Radiation Protection affirms that the goals of radiation protection are simply to: (1) prevent the occurrence of clinically-significant radiation-induced deterministic effects by adhering to dose limits that are below the apparent threshold levels; and (2) limit the risk of stochastic effects (e.g., cancers) in exposed persons to an amount that is acceptable in relation to the benefits to the individual and to society from the activities that generate such exposures.
The Radiation Safety Office has been a University-wide program since its inception in 1976 when the Alabama Department of Public Health issued a Broad Scope Medical License for Radioactive Materials to the University of South Alabama. In 1982 the Radiation Safety Office was separated from the Environmental Health & Safety Department and reestablished as a separate department under the auspices of a Radiation Safety Committee. The Committee is composed of members from the following areas:
College of Medicine • College of Arts and Sciences • Radiation Safety Office
Environmental Safety and Compliance • Hospital Administration
Radiation Oncology services
Medical Staff • Nursing Services • Department of Radiology
The Radiation Safety Committee was established to oversee all uses of radioactive material permitted by the University of South Alabama.
To oversee the use of licensed radioactive material, the Committee shall, with the help of the radiation safety officer:
1. Be responsible for monitoring the institutional program to maintain individual and collective doses as low as reasonably achievable;
2. Review, on the basis of safety and with regard to the regulatory training and experience standards, and approve or disapprove any individual who is to be listed as an authorized user, the Radiation Safety Officer, or Teletherapy Physicist before submitting a license application or request for amendment or renewal;
3. Review on the basis of safety and approve or disapprove each proposed method of use of radioactive material;
4. Review on the basis of safety, and approve with the advice and consent of the Radiation Safety Officer and the management representative, or disapprove procedures and radiation safety program changes prior to submittal to the Agency for licensing action;
5. Review quarterly, with the assistance of the Radiation Safety Officer, occupational radiation exposure records of all personnel working with radioactive material;
6. Review quarterly, with the assistance of the Radiation Safety Officer, all incidents involving radioactive material with respect to cause and subsequent actions taken;
7. Review annually, with the assistance of the Radiation Safety Officer, the radioactive material program; and
8. Establish a table of investigational and action levels for occupational dose that, when exceeded, will initiate investigations and/or considerations of action by the Radiation Safety Officer.
This department currently manages the University-wide Radiation Safety Program that involves a Broad Medical Radioactive Materials License, eleven x-ray registrations and a particle accelerator registration; all issued by the Alabama Department of Public Health. We work with about thirty different departments that have between fifty and sixty active permit holders who utilize radiation.
Director: David A. Wiik, M.S.
The director is responsible to the Dean of the College of Medicine for operation of the department and to the Radiation Safety Committee for the University-wide radiation safety program. The director serves as the University Radiation Safety Officer (RSO). He serves on various committees at both hospitals & the main campus, conducts radiation safety training to users of radiation, reviews new user applications for presentation to the committee and oversees the radioactive materials license & machine registrations. He practices other health physics duties as they present themselves.
Assistant Radiation Safety Officer: Michelle Taylor, B.S., R.T., R.N.
The Assistant Radiation Safety Officer is responsible to the RSO for overseeing day-to-day RST activities of the department such as described below. Additionally, she officially interacts with the Agency by letter and telephone, performs the RAM shipping, and teaches the technical aspects of radiation safety to users of unsealed sources.
Radiation Safety Technologist (RST): Laura LaFontaine, R.T.
The Radiation Safety Technologist is responsible to the Radiation Safety Officer for maintaining the records associated with the personnel exposure monitoring, collection and disposal of radionuclide waste, lab surveys, lab inspections, hood surveys, instrument calibrations, electron microscope surveys, radionuclide distributions, waste container labeling and distributions, thyroid bioassays, radionuclide shipping container wipe tests and surveys.
University of South Alabama
Radiation Safety Office
5795 USA Drive North, CSAB Room 257
Mobile, Alabama 36688
(251) 460-7063 voice
(251) 460-6068 fax
© 2016 USA Health System