Woolridge, A. C., Phillips, P. S. and Denman, A. R. (2008) Developing a methodology for the systematic analysis of radioactive healthcare waste generation in an acute hospital in the UK. Resources, Conservation and Recycling.52(10), pp. 1198-1208. 0921-3499.
Woolridge, A. C., Phillips, P. S. and Denman, A. R.
This paper demonstrates the development of a methodology for systematically analysing radioactive waste generation and disposal in an acute general hospital setting in the UK. Low level radioactive waste occurs in research centres and hospitals as the result of the use of radiopharmaceuticals for a range of diagnostic and therapeutic procedures. There is specific legislation regarding the disposal of radioactive waste which overrides any attempt to minimise the quantity of waste going to final disposal. This means that any efforts to minimise the cost of radioactive waste disposal must be taken prior to the final disposal. This research systematically investigated the generation and movement of radioactive sources and wastes in from the perspective of the Medical Physics and Nuclear Medicine Departments. Waste flow diagrams have been used to document the flows of radioactive sources and waste streams. A range of quantitative and qualitative methods have been utilised in order to represent the interactions between systems in place both within and outside the site being analysed. This research has shown that by systematically analysing the waste generation and flow of waste around the hospital, opportunities for implementing best practice can be identified