Launch date fixed for radiation safety initiative in Africa

The authorities in Africa plan to launch Afrosafe, a radiation safety program, prior to the Pan African Congress of Radiology and Imaging (PACORI), according to the January edition of Quality News, the newsletter of the International Commission on Radiological Quality and Safety. The PACORI takes place from 17 to 20 February in Nairobi, Kenya.

Afrosafe will be a nongovernmental organization (NGO) representing organizations and individuals in Africa who seek to promote quality, safe, and appropriate use of diagnostic, screening and therapeutic medical procedures employing ionizing radiation and to prevent radiation-induced injuries.

The NGO will advocate adherence to policies, strategies, and activities to improve radiation safety and maximize the benefits from radiological medical procedures, with a special focus on children and women in the reproductive age group, noted the article in Quality News.

Afrosafe's vision is: "All throughout Africa, medical procedures utilizing ionizing radiation are of highest achievable quality, safe, and beneficial." Its mission is: "To ensure that throughout Africa, the benefits outweigh the harms for all individuals exposed to radiation for screening, diagnosis, or therapy at all levels of care."

Afrosafe said it is optimistic the initiative will ensure the 10 actions outlined in Bonn Call-for-Action and the requirements of the new Basic Safety Standards are realized in Africa within a specified time period.

Afrosafe said it was inspired by EuroSafe Imaging, launched last year. The NGO's membership is open to all organizations and individuals having a stake or working in the medical radiation safety field. Its secretariat will be based in one of the centrally located cities in Africa and will be responsible for coordinating, facilitating, and monitoring activities related to Afrosafe's objectives and reporting and communicating the outcomes to relevant stakeholders.

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