If Vermont Yankee had an Incident like Fukushima, What Would be the Responsibilities and Public Expectations of the Scientific Community?

Harold Swartz, Dartmouth Medical School

Friday, October 7, 2011, 3:30pm

Spanos Auditorium

This seminar is part of the Jones Seminars on Science, Technology, and Society series

The purpose of this presentation is:

  1. To understand the medical implications of a total body exposure of an individual to high levels of ionizing radiation (greater than 1 Gray), and also, potential long-term effects.
  2. To understand how to interpret the information and counsel colleagues and the public about radiation exposures in the environment.
  3. To understand public health implications and actions that should be taken when there are potential exposures of large numbers of individuals to ionizing radiation as might occur with a major accident from a nuclear power plant or an attack by terrorists that involves ionizing radiation.
  4. Delineate and differentiate between medical needs and risks between a nuclear device and an incident at a nuclear power plant.
  5. Provide guidance for your responses to a radiation event (because people will believe you!).
  6. Explain context and needs for dosimetry in large scale event.
  7. Describe our current research and activities in responses to major radiation events.

About the Speaker

Harold Swartz, MD, MSPH, PhD is a Professor of Radiology, Medicine (Radiation Oncology), Physiology, Community and Family Medicine, Chemistry, and Engineering and the director of the Dartmouth EPR Center and the Dart-Dose CMCR. He is an internationally recognized biophysicist and radiation biologist who has especially been involved in the development of magnetic resonance for preclinical and clinical applications. He has done research and teaching on the biological effects of ionizing radiation since 1962 at Walter Reed, Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW), University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC), and Dartmouth. The EPR Center at Dartmouth is especially focused on developing and applying in vivo EPR for measurements of physiologically and pathophysiological parameters in vivo. He has developed, at Dartmouth, the first clinical program in EPR, which has a special emphasis on using the technique to measure radiation dose after the fact for purposes of triage and to advance cancer treatment by using repetitive measurements of oxygen to optimize delivery of cancer therapy. He has founded and directed national EPR Centers at the Medical College of Wisconsin, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and at Dartmouth. He is the PI of one of the CMCR Centers, DART-DOSE CMCR, focusing on Physical Biodosimetry. He is the author/coauthor of approximately 450 papers and four books. He has received several international awards including the Zavoisky prize.