International Atomic Energy Agency co-sponsored by
the European Commission
Pan American Health Organization and
World Health Organization

hosted by the Government of Spain

International Conference on the Radiological Protection of Patients

Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology
Nuclear Medicine and

Torremolinos (Málaga), Spain
26 - 30 March 2001


[View Preliminary Programme, Logistics and Hotel Reservations]
[Click for Spanish Version - First Announcement]


    Medical applications of ionizing radiation (or "radiation" for short) are accepted worldwide as essential tools for protecting and improving human health. However, they also represent by far the largest man-made source of radiation exposure; the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation (UNSCEAR) estimates that diagnostic medical applications of radiation account for about 95% of the exposure to radiation from man-made sources and about 12% of total exposure. Furthermore, there is certain to be a continuing increase in the prevalence of medical applications of radiation, including high-dose procedures such as

    • radiological interventional procedures often replacing surgery can lead to very high radiation doses, both to patients and to medical staff, in some cases exceeding thresholds for deterministic effects; and
    • the use of helical computed tomography has improved diagnostic quality of CT examinations, and the procedures are made faster and more flexible than with non-helical equipment. However, increased number of procedures and increased number of scans per procedure may lead to significant increase in radiation exposure.

    In diagnosis, the radiological protection objective is to keep doses as low as reasonably achievable while obtaining the necessary diagnostic information. According to the International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP), doses from similar radiological investigations can differ by as much as two orders of magnitude. There is therefore considerable scope for dose reduction in diagnostic and interventional radiology and also in nuclear medicine. In therapy, the objective is to ensure that the target tissue is given the prescribed dose while minimizing the dose to surrounding healthy tissue. If the dose, dose distribution or dose fractionation is significantly different from that prescribed, serious consequences can arise, as in recent incidents involving the accidental exposure of radiotherapy patients. The application of well designed quality assurance programmes are necessary in order to ensure the protection of patients.

    In fulfilling its statutory functions, the International Atomic Energy Agency (the IAEA) - jointly with the World Health Organization (WHO), the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the International Labour Organization (ILO), the Nuclear Energy Agency of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (NEA/OECD) and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) - has established International Basic Safety Standards for Protection against Ionizing Radiation and for the Safety of Radiation Sources, which were issued by the IAEA in 1996. These include radiological protection requirements for medical exposure situations. Supporting guidance on meeting these requirements is being developed by the IAEA, WHO, PAHO and the European Commission. In 1997 the European Union (EU) adopted a "Council Directive on Health Protection against the Dangers of Ionizing Radiation in relation to Medical Exposures", which imposes radiological protection requirements on EU member States.

    In October 1999 the IAEA’s General Conference requested the Secretariat of the IAEA to organize "an international meeting on the radiological protection of patients for the purpose of an exchange of information and the development of recommendations, as appropriate, regarding the radiological protection of patients". In response to that request, the IAEA is organizing the International Conference on the Radiological Protection of Patients in Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology, Nuclear Medicine and Radiotherapy, which is being co-sponsored by the European Commission, the PAHO and the WHO and will be hosted by the Government of Spain. The Conference will take place in Torremolinos (Málaga), Spain, from 26 to 30 March 200l.


    The objective of the Conference is to foster the exchange of information on issues related to the radiological protection of patients during medical applications of radiation and to formulate recommendations, as appropriate, regarding further international co-operation in this area.


    The Conference is directed to a broad spectrum of professionals dealing with the medical applications of radiation - including radiologists, nuclear medicine specialists, radiation oncologists, medical physicists, technologists/radiographers, radiological protection officers, equipment manufacturers, experts who develop radiological protection standards, hospital administrators and governmental officials (for example, regulators and health policy-makers).


    After an opening session with welcoming addresses by a representative of the host Government, a representative of the IAEA and representatives of the other co-sponsoring organizations and an opening address by the President of the Conference, there will be a briefing session at which the global situation with regard to the radiological protection of patients will be summarized in keynote presentations, including presentations given by representatives of the European Commission, the IAEA, ICRP, PAHO, UNSCEAR and WHO.

    A series of topical sessions will then cover selected topics relating to the radiological protection of patients. Each topical session will be addressed by a Rapporteur and moderated by a Chairperson. The topic will be introduced and the relevant contributed papers summarized by the Rapporteur, whose presentation will be followed by a general discussion. Subsequently, topical session summaries will be prepared by the Chairpersons.

    Finally, there will be a round table discussion of possible recommendations for future action, followed by a concluding session at which the topical session Chairpersons will present their summaries and the President of the Conference will present the Conference conclusions.


    The briefing session will cover subjects such as:

    • The current uses of radiation in medicine
    • The current levels of radiation dose to patients
    • The radiological risks associated with the various uses of radiation in medicine within the context of the benefits
    • International standards for the radiological protection of patients
    • The history of the use of radiation in medicine and lessons learned from experience
    • The international regulatory climate.


    The topical sessions will cover subjects such as:

    • Radiological protection of patients in general diagnostic radiology
    • Radiological protection issues in specific uses of diagnostic radiology, such as mammography and computed tomography (with special consideration of the impact of digital techniques)
    • Radiological protection in interventional radiology, including fluoroscopy not carried out by radiologists [this topic will cover the radiological protection both of patients and of staff carrying out interventional radiology]
    • Radiological protection of patients in nuclear medicine
    • Developing and using guidance (reference) levels for medical exposures in radiology and nuclear medicine examinations
    • Radiological protection of the embryo and foetus in pregnant patients
    • Radiological protection of paediatric patients
    • Radiological protection of patients in radiotherapy (including the prevention of exposures differing from prescription)
    • Radiological protection of patients in biomedical research
    • Influence of standardization in the design and development of medical radiological equipment on the radiological protection of patients
    • Education, training and continuous professional development in the radiological protection of patients
    • Topics for research and development in the radiological protection of patients


    • What should be done about radiation-sensitive groups?
    • Problems in the radiological protection of patients attributable to a country’s general infrastructure.
    • Risks and benefits: should they be quantified?
    • Regulations: too much or not enough?
    • Expectations of patients’ advocats.


    Concise papers on issues falling within the scope of the Topical Sessions (see Section 6 above) may be submitted as contributions to the Conference. These papers will not be presented orally, but will be summarized by a Rapporteur (as indicated in Section 4 above) and included in a Compendium of Contributed Papers to be distributed free of charge to all participants upon registration. Questions relating to the contributed papers can be put at an appropriate topical session. Authors of contributed papers may, if they so wish, present the substance of their papers in the form of Posters, which will be exhibited in a Poster Area. It is expected that a least one author of each Poster will attend the Conference in order to explain the Poster. Guidelines for the preparation and submission of contributed papers and posters are given in the Appendix. (See Section 10 for submission of the contributed papers and Form for Submission of a Contributed Paper).

    The deadline for the receipt of contributed papers is 1 November 2000.

    Papers submitted after the deadline cannot be considered.


    The Proceedings of the Conference, to be published by the IAEA, will contain the welcoming addresses, the opening address by the President of the Conference, the keynote presentations, the Rapporteurs’ reports, the Chairpersons’ summaries, the Conference conclusions presented by the President of the Conference, and the records of the discussions. The Proceedings can be ordered, at a discount price, during the Conference.


    For participation in the meeting the Participation Form must be completed and sent to one of the competent official authorities (Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Health or the national atomic energy authority).

    For contributed papers the Form for Submission of a Contributed Paper must be completed and sent along with the contributed paper itself to one of the competent official authorities listed above.

    For participants wishing to receive financial assistance for travel to the conference (see Section 12), the Grant Application Form must be completed and sent to one of the competent official authorities listed above.

    Additionally, it would be helpful if advance copies of these forms could be faxed directly to the IAEA Conference Secretariat (see Section 17) for information purposes.

    The deadline for receipt by the IAEA through official channels of all applicable forms is 1 November 2000.

    Subsequent communications should be sent to the Scientific Secretary of the Conference when they concern technical matters and to the Conference Organizer when they concern administrative matters (see Section 17 for addresses, etc.).


    The Conference will take place at the Palacio de Congresos in Torremolinos (Málaga), Spain, from 26 to 30 March 2001. Registration will start in the afternoon of Sunday, 25 March 2001 on the Conference premises. The Opening Session will start at 09:30 hours on Monday, 26 March 2001.

    The working languages of the Conference will be English and Spanish. Simultaneous interpretation (into and from these two languages) will be provided during the Conference. Please note that there will be no interpretation in the Poster Area.


    There is no registration fee for participation in the Conference.

    The costs of organizing the Conference will be borne by the sponsoring Organizations and the host Government.

    As a general rule, the IAEA does not meet travel and living costs of persons attending events organized by it. However, it does have some funds available to help meet the costs of attendance of selected specialists from developing Member States with low economic resources (usually, only one travel grant may be awarded per country). To apply for a travel grant, please send the Grant Application Form, with details typewritten or clearly hand-printed, through official channels (see Section 10) to reach the IAEA by 1 November 2000. Incomplete or late applications cannot be considered. The grants will be lump sums, in most cases covering only part of the costs of attendance.


    Information on accommodation, together with general information, will be sent to all officially designated participants approximately three months prior to the Conference.

  14. VISAS

    Participants who require a visa in order to enter Spain should submit the necessary application to the nearest diplomatic or consular representative of Spain as soon as possible.


    Deadline for receipt of participation form: 1 November 2000

    Deadline for submission of contributed papers: 1 November 2000

    Deadline for application for grants (if applicable): 1 November 2000


    The Conference is supported by the following three bodies:

    • A Conference Secretariat
    • A Programme Committee
    • An Organizing Committee


    Administrative matters
    Conference Organizer, IAEA:   Ms. Hildegard Schmid

    Conference Service Section
    International Atomic Energy Agency
    Vienna International Centre
    Wagramer Strasse 5
    P.O. Box 100
    A-1400 Vienna, Austria, Europe

    Telephone No.: +43-1-2600-21316 or - 21311
    Telefax No.: +43-1-26007
    Electronic mail: [email protected]
    Electronic mail address for paper submission: [email protected]

    Technical matters and paper submission
    Scientific Secretary, IAEA:   Mr. Pedro Ortiz-López

    Radiation Safety Section, Division of Radiation and Waste Safety
    International Atomic Energy Agency
    Vienna International Centre
    Wagramer Strasse 5
    P.O. Box 100
    A-1400 Vienna, Austria, Europe

    Telephone No.: +43-1-2600-22718 or -22736
    Telefax No.: +43-1-26007
    Electronic mail: [email protected]

    Conference venue matters
    Local organization:   Mr. Rafael Ruiz Cruces

    Professor of Radiology and Medical Physics
    Assistant Director of Research Group of Radiation Protection
    Radiology and Medical Physics Department
    School of Medicine, University of Málaga
    C/ Campus de Teatinos, s/n
    E- 29071 Málaga, Spain

    Telephone No.: +34-952131576
    Telefax No.: +34-952134231
    Electronic mail: [email protected]


    The Conference Webpage addresses are:


Preparation and Submission of Contributed Papers


    Contributions to the Conference, in the form of concise papers not exceeding four pages in length, are welcome. These papers will not be presented orally, but will be summarized by Rapporteurs at the topical sessions. A Compendium of Contributed Papers will be given to each participant upon registration. Questions relating to the contributed papers can be put at the appropriate topical session. Contributed papers must be submitted in one of the working languages of the Conference: English or Spanish. Each contributed paper must be preceded by an abstract, in English, not exceeding 200 words.

    The contributed papers will be published in the Proceedings of the Conference. The authors of contributed papers may also, if they so desire, present the substance of their papers in the form of posters.

    Authors wishing to contribute a paper must submit it through an official channel (see Section 10 of the Announcement) together with Form for Submission of a Contributed Paper duly completed. They should state to which technical session topic their contribution relates (see Section 6 of the Announcement). Simultaneously an electronic version of the contributed paper, in Word, should be submitted by e-mail to [email protected] or sent on discette to the Conference Secretariat. The discette label should identify the paper, the topic and the word processing application used. To permit selection and review, these items must be received at the Conference Secretariat in Vienna not later than

    1 November 2000

    Papers arriving after this deadline will not be considered. Papers submitted through official channels together with Form for Submission of a Contributed Paper duly completed will be selected for inclusion in the Compendium of Contributed Papers after a review process. The Secretariat reserves the right to exclude papers that do not comply with its quality standards.


    Authors should submit a copy, printed on one side of the paper only, single spaced, 12 point or 11 point CG Times, Times Roman, or similar type. Sans serif type (e.g. Arial, Univers) must not be used. Margins must be set to yield a print area of 16 cm x 25 cm. The paper must not exceed a total of four pages, including any tables and figures. Pages should be numbered at the centre of the page below the print area.

    2.1.   General

    1. Section and subsection headings should be numbered as in these instructions.
    2. The international system of units (SI) should be used, or appropriate conversions given where non-SI units must be retained.
    3. Abbreviations likely to be unfamiliar to readers must be explained the first time they occur.
    4. Mathematical symbols must be clearly and consistently typed, or handwritten if necessary, to ensure that their meanings and positions are unambiguous.
    5. Lists should be set out as in this list.
    6. Footnotes to the text should be indicated by superscript Arabic numerals and should be typed at the foot of the appropriate page.

    2.2.   Title page

         The title of the Paper, the name(s) of the author(s), the names and locations of their institutions and the fax number and/or e-mail address of the main author must be given on the first page of the paper. Footnotes to the title and to authors’ names should be indicated by asterisks and other symbols. The paper should begin with an abstract, in English, not exceeding 200 words and not containing references, figures or tables.

    2.3.   References

         References should be numbered (in Arabic numerals in square brackets) in the order in which they are mentioned in the text and should be listed at the end of the paper. A reference first cited in a figure, figure caption or table should be numbered according to the place in the text where the figure or table is first mentioned. References must conform to the format and must contain all information shown in the examples in Refs. [1-10], below, and must be carefully checked against the actual material cited.


    [1]    TAIT, W.H., Radiation Detection, Butterworth, London (1980) 406 pp.

    Paper in proceedings (the publisher and the place and year of publication should be given)

    [2]    GRAMBOW, B., LUTZE, W., "Chemical stability of a phosphate glass under hydrothermal conditions", Scientific Basis for Nuclear Waste Management (Proc. Int. Symp. Boston, 1979), Vol. 2 (NORTHRUP, C.J.M., Jr., Ed.), Plenum Press, New York (1980) 109-116.

    Entire proceedings

    [3]   Nuclear Power Performance and Safety (Proc. Int. Conf. Vienna, 1987), 6 vols, IAEA, Vienna (1988).

    Paper in the proceedings of this Conference

    [4]   BRENNECKE, P., et al., IAEA-CN-67/17, these Proceedings.


    [5]   FORSYTH, R.S. (Ed.), The Hot Cell Laboratory -- A Short Description of Programs, Facilities and Techniques, Rep. STUDSVIK/NF(P)-86/29, Studsvik Energiteknik, Nyköping (1986).

    [6]   NATIONALE GENOSSENSCHAFT FÜR DIE LAGERUNG RADIOAKTIVER ABFALLE, Repository for High Level Waste: Construction and Operation, Rep. 85-04, Nagra, Baden, Switzerland (1985).

    Journal article

    [7]   MATHERON, G., Principles of geostatistics, Econ. Geol. 58 (1963) 1246-1266.

    [8]   WILLE, H., BERTHOLDT, H.O., Chemical decontamination of components and systems, Nucl. Eur. 8 10 (1988) 41-42.

    Personal communication

    [9]   PHILLIPS, S.M., Kernforschungsanlage Jülich, KOCH, D., Physikalisch Technische Bundesanstalt, Braunschweig, personal communication, 1985.


    [10]   ASHTARI, M., Biological and Physical Studies of Boron Neutron Capture Therapy, PhD Thesis, Massachusetts Inst. of Technology, Cambridge (1982).

         If a bibliography for background reading, i.e. whose entries are not cited in the text, is included, it should be set out in reference form and put in alphabetical order by author. The entries should not be serially numbered. References by the same author should be ordered chronologically, with the earliest reference first.

    2.4.   Tables

         Tables should be integrated into the text. Tables should be numbered (in Roman numerals) in the order in which they are mentioned, and each table should have a heading. Footnotes to tables should be indicated by lower case letters.

    2.5.   Figures

         Figures should be numbered in Arabic numerals in the order in which they are mentioned in the text and each figure should have a caption.

    Line drawings should be prepared with a computer, if possible, or by a draftsperson if necessary (authors’ sketches are not acceptable). Lettering should be in sans serif type no smaller than 8 point. Detail that will not reproduce clearly (e.g. fine lines, small plotting symbols, and fine shading) should be avoided. Original prints of line drawings, preferably from a high resolution computer printer, should be used.

    Photographs should be kept to a minimum. Do not insert photographs into the text; instead, submit good quality glossy continuous tone prints of any convenient size, clearly identified on the back. Leave enough space for each photograph in the text, taking into account the aspect ratio of the photograph, and insert the corresponding caption below that space. The following are not acceptable: halftones or "screened" prints, computer scans, copies of photographs of existing publications, photocopies and slides. Colour reproduction is not possible.

    Computer produced figures should be saved on a discette, in the original application and also as tif, eps or pict files if possible. Files should be numbered appropriately. The discette label should indicate the application in which the figures were prepared.


    3.1.   General

         Information on a poster should attract attention. It should therefore be limited to the most important facts only. Details and explanations should be left for face-to-face discussions. Text and presentation should be in one of the working languages of the Conference (English or Spanish).

    Posters should be prepared in advance, and should be easily mounted on a poster board. The exact dimensions of the poster boards will be announced later.

    3.2.   Title

         The top of the poster should display, in lettering at least 3 cm high, the title of the presentation and the names and affiliations of the authors.

    3.3.   Body

         The body of the poster should contain divisions such as Introduction, Method, Results and Conclusions or the equivalent.

    The text should be easily readable from a distance of 2 to 2.5 m. Use heavy lettering at least 1 cm high. Ordinary typewritten text is NOT acceptable.

    3.4.   Presentation

         Poster authors are requested to be at their posters for discussion with interested participants during the relevant poster session, as indicated in the Conference programme.

    3.5.   Size

         The size of the poster boards will be communicated to authors at a later stage.

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