Mitigating the Psychological Harm from Actinide Intakes

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Abstract

Investigations into possible actinide intakes, as well as the intakes themselves, may result in significant psychological harm that should be mitigated by the internal dosimetrist. Many aspects of this psychological impact are unique to actinide intakes and have not been discussed in the literature. This paper discusses some of these unique considerations and describes how the Internal Dosimetry Team at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) has, with input and guidance from LANL psychologists, tried to address them. We feel that much of the psychological harm can be mitigated by educating employees specifically about internal dosimetry and internal doses, and by improving communication with radiation workers.

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