UK Workshop on the Ethical Dimensions of the Radiological Protection System
11 June 2014
British Dental Association
64 Wimpole Street, London W1G 8YS
This one day workshop took place on Wednesday 11 June at the British Dental Association, London.
The system of radiological protection develops gradually over time, integrating both scientific advancements and the evolution of the ethical and social values that shape modern community life. The recommendations of ICRP are designed to respect individual rights (deontological ethics), to promote the collective interest (utilitarian ethics) and favour vigilance and equity (virtue ethics). Having recently undertaken a review of ethics within the system of protection, ICRP has now established a Task Group to develop an ICRP Publication presenting the ethical foundations of the system of radiological protection. The purpose of this Publication is to consolidate the basis of the Recommendations, to improve the understanding of the system and to provide a basis for communication on radiation risk and its perception.
IRPA is working with ICRP to ensure that the radiation protection profession is fully engaged in this task. It is in all our interests to ensure that our system is recognised as having a strong ethical basis, whilst at the same time is capable of being understood, explained and believed by all stakeholders, including both practitioners and the wider public.
The work will seek to identify the key components of the ethical theories and principles prevailing in the fields of safety, health, labour, the environment and sustainable development relevant to the system of radiological protection, and distinguish the ethical values defining the standards by which action should be taken, the ethical procedures for integrating these values in decision making and in the implementation of the decisions, and the ethical behaviour corresponding to the values that are supposed to guide the conduct of the various parties. Because the radiation protection system is intended to be international, it is important to promote values common to different cultures such as autonomy, non-maleficence, beneficence and justice.
The Workshop will share the current reflections about ethical dimensions of the radiological protection system. The workshop findings will contribute to the joint ICRP/IRPA review of ethics and values within the management of radiation risk, including the aim of improving the understanding and communication of the system. This will be undertaken through exploring the ethical values currently within the system of protection and through ‘shedding light’ on different aspects of practical implementation that raise ethical questions and value judgments. The outcome from the workshop will form a contribution to the ongoing dialogue on ethics in radiation protection: it will seek to build on the output from the Milan Workshop in December 2013, and will provide a basis for further discussion at the upcoming Geneva IRPA Regional Congress in June.
Wednesday 11 June 2014
0845 Registration and coffee
0915 Welcome – Aim and objectives of the Workshop
0930 – 1115 Presentations reviewing ethical theories and issues surrounding the implementation of the system for radiological protection
1115 – 1130 Refreshments
1130 – 1215 Session 1 continued
1215 – 1230 Working Groups aims and objectives
1230 – 1315 Lunch
1315 – 1545 Working Groups
1545 – 1630 Presentations of working group findings
1630 – 1700 Conclusions