GAEC HOLDS WORKSHOP FOR RADIOGRAPHERS AND X-RAY TECHNICIANS

The Radiation Protection Institute (RPI) of the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC) held a five-day training workshop from September 27 to October 1, 2021, for Radiographers and X-ray Technicians in radiation protection and safety.

The objective of the workshop was to equip Radiographers and X-ray Technicians with the techniques of dealing with risks associated with excessive radiation exposure and update practitioners on the right protocols and procedures when performing such radiographic procedures.

Deputy Director of RPI, Dr. Joseph K. Amoako (Standing), giving the keynote address at the workshop.

Facilitators took the participants through topics including Occupational Radiation Protection, National Regulatory Requirements for Control of Radiation Sources, Quality Management System of Radiological Facilities and Activities, Safety and Security of Radiation Sources, Radioactive Waste Management, Radiation Protection in Diagnostic Radiology, Patient Dose Assessment & Image Quality, Radiation Protection in Radiotherapy and Nuclear Medicine, and Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Safety, among others.

Addressing the participants at the workshop, the Director General of GAEC, Prof. Benjamin Jabez Botwe in a speech read on his behalf by the Deputy Director of RPI, Dr. Joseph K. Amoako said that the evolving nature of medicine with so many advancements in technology has compelled the continuous training of Radiographers to equip them with the necessary knowledge in radiation protection and safety.

He, therefore, noted that as part of efforts to enhance the capacity and ensure the intelligibility of Radiographers in modern medicine, the RPI as a licensed Technical Service Organization (TSO) has been given the authority to provide technical and training services to personnel in medical, industrial and research radiation activities in Ghana.

“RPI is now positioned to provide scientific, technical support and training in Health Physics, including Occupational Radiation Protection, Public Exposure, Nuclear Safety and Security as well as Radioactive Waste Management. It also undertakes research, development and technical training services in Non–ionizing radiation protection” he said.

Prof. Botwe urged the participants to avail themselves to the training so that they can be fully acquaint themselves with the current and relevant issues of radiation protection and safety in medicine.

“It is my fervent hope that the objectives of this training course will be fully achieved by the end of the training. You will be taken through an elaborate syllabus in radiation protection and safety and also given a hands-on training at our Personnel Dosimetry Laboratory and Secondary Standard Dosimetry Laboratory. You will be also be provided with a GAEC Ionizing Radiation Safety Training Manual” he added.

Speaking on the sidelines of the programme, the Manager in charge of training at RPI, Dr. Stephen Inkoom, said that the hands-on training sessions would be given to the participants at selected facilities including laboratories of GAEC and the University of Ghana Medical Center.

“We will take our participants to the X-ray and Imaging Departments so that the main parameters which have implications for patient dose will be exposed to them. Parameters such as the choice of kVp and mAs which have implications for patient dose will be looked at, because for any medical exposure, the first thing is justification by a physician, then the Imaging Technologist or Radiographer would have to carry out the exposure”, he added.

Dr. Inkoom indicated that this years Training Course has been granted ten (10) Continuing Professional Development (CPD) points by the Allied Health Professions Council (AHPC), Ghana.

The participants were from the Ghana Health Service, Regional and District Hospitals across Ghana, Specialist Hospitals, and Private Diagnostic and Imaging Centers, and a foreign participant from Swaziland among others.

By: CPRC, CCD, GAEC

 

MEDICAL PHYSICISTS COMPLETE CLINICAL TRAINING IN DIAGNOSTIC RADIOLOGY AND NUCLEAR MEDICINE AT GAEC

Nine Medical Physicists have completed a six-month fellowship programme in diagnostic radiology and nuclear medicine at the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC) in Accra.

The participants were from Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya, Sudan, Uganda, and Zimbabwe, and the programme was under the tutelage of the Radiological and Medical Sciences Research Institute (RAMSRI) of GAEC with sponsorship from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

Addressing the fellows at a closing ceremony in Accra, the Director-General of the GAEC, Prof. Benjamin Jabez Botwe Nyarko, said Medical Physicists are an important component of the entire radiotherapy and nuclear medicine ecosystem.

Prof Nyarko explained that Medical Physics deals with the application of physical principles to diagnose and treat human diseases and the branches of medical physics include, therapeutic medical physics, diagnostic medical physics, medical nuclear physics, and medical health physics.

He explained that Medical Physicists provide essential radiation protection and radiation safety services, plan patients’ radiation treatment using either external radiation beams or internally placed radioactive sources, and analyze nuclear medical image data to determine important physiological variables such as metabolic rates and blood flow.

Prof. Nyarko mentioned that the IAEA and the African Regional Cooperative Agreement for Research, Development, and Training related to Nuclear Science and Technology (AFRA) have made a conscious effort to develop African experts in the field of nuclear science by hosting training sessions in Africa.

“It is our duty to ensure that our continent is recognized in the field of diagnostic radiology and nuclear medicine. Therefore, I am encouraging all fellows to go back to their respective countries and share their knowledge with their people. Contribute to the development of Africa by putting your expertise and skills to work for your country,” he said.

The Director of the Radiological and Medical Sciences Research Institute (RAMSRI), Prof Mary Boadu, said that the training has been rigorous because the facilitators ensured that all modules in diagnostic radiology and nuclear medicine were covered.

“I believe that good and reasonable knowledge and skills have been impacted into the fellows. I will like to encourage you to endeavor to implement as soon as possible the skills that have been impacted into you upon your return to your country” she added.

In a short statement, the Fellowship Coordinator, Mr. Theophilus Sackey, mentioned that the objective of the training was to help fill the huge gap of non-availability of clinically trained medical physicists in diagnostic radiology and nuclear medicine in Africa.

He further noted that although the fellows experienced a few challenges, the training programme has largely been a success.

“I am particularly happy with the frank and open manner in which we discussed and overcame the challenges that we faced. I encourage you to make use of the numerous networks that you have established here in Ghana to the benefit of diagnostic radiology and nuclear medicine in your respective countries” he added.

The nine fellows and training facilitators from RAMSRI were presented with certificates for their participation.

By: CPRC, CCD, GAEC