Development Prospects of Actual Problems of Medical Radiology and Radiation Safety

 In the implementation of health care for workers in particularly hazardous production facilities in industries such as defense, nuclear, chemical and others, technologies have been created and tested for many years to assess and mitigate the impact of harmful production factors on human health. These technologies became the basis for ensuring the radiation and chemical safety of personnel in various highly hazardous industries and people living near them.

However, with the undoubted achievements in these fields, now the borders of the usual schemes and available technologies for the implementation of sanitary and epidemiological surveillance, the implementation of scientific, clinical, information, and other such activities are "blurred" over time, creating new challenges and new views. That’s why in order to keep up with the times, the editorial policy of our journal in conditions of variability of external circumstances also requires and therefore undergoes changes.

There were times when many scientists were an isolated "elite" part of the society and could take liberties to engage in science "for the sake of science". Today, as the turn of the vector of scientific activity is directed towards a greater social demand for its results, a new strategic task is the maximum economic and social effectiveness of the scientific projects implemented by the institution, not only by state funding, but also by those that are search and initiative ones.

It seems necessary to consider our views on the strategic tasks that still lay ahead in the coming decades, to discuss not the present, but the future of medical radiology and radiation safety. To raise questions that have not been solved yet, but which, in our opinion, can serve as a reference point in the future, in accordance with the Fundamentals of the state policy in the field of nuclear and radiation safety of the Russian Federation for the period up to 2025[1].

Guided by these principles, we will determine the following fields of scientific development, on which it is necessary to focus the attention of the relevant specialists:

  • Development, improvement and introduction of new radiation technologies[2], methods of diagnostics and treatment of the most significant diseases, especially cardiovascular and oncological diseases;
  • reduction of mortality and morbidity rates of the serviced contingent;
  • prevention of economic damage, by eliminating emergency situations with radiological consequences at nuclear and radiation hazardous facilities;
  • ensuring safe handling of spent nuclear fuel, disposal of radioactive waste and other sources of ionizing radiation;
  • development of methods for effective reduction of social tension in the regions where both nuclear fuel cycle facilities and nuclear heritage facilities are located, and the related increase in public confidence in the further development of nuclear energy and industry.

To do this, it is necessary to ensure an acceptable level of risk of radiation exposure to humans and their habitat from the objects of use of atomic energy, sources of ionizing radiation of man-made and natural origin.

To implement these fields, further development of Russian nuclear medicine[3] is required, primarily the development and introduction into clinical practice of breakthrough medical technologies in the field of radiation medicine, oncology, surgery and transplantation, and methods for prolonging life.

It is very important that our national medical priorities in the field of radiology and radiation safety correspond to the strategic priorities for the development of radiation protection throughout the world. In order to maintain and continue to improve the quality, relevance and timeliness of scientific research in the field of radiation medicine, and to develop efficient and effective regulation, ICRP considers its main strategic priorities as the following[4]:

  • improvement of the radiation protection system, relying on the analysis and assessment of modern scientific and technological achievements and technologies based on the use of ionizing radiation;
  • promotion of awareness of radiological protection, education and training in radiation protection and related fields, focusing on the medical sector, health professionals and affected populations;
  • improvement interaction with specialists, authorities, politicians and the public, expanding effective cooperation with other organizations.

An important turning point in our editorial policy is a serious change in the vector of international scientific and technical cooperation. Previously, scientists presented information mainly on international best practices received as a result of international business trips, but now Russian specialists in the pool of serious international expert organizations, such as UNSCEAR, ICRP, IAEA, WHO, the European Association of Nuclear Medicine and etc., present to world science their own experience and the results of joint projects of cooperation and the scientific and practical experience accumulated in the course of their implementation.


[1] Approved by the President of the Russian Federation 01.03.2012 г., № Order-539.

[2] Nuclear medicine technologies (radiopharmaceuticals); biomedical cell technologies; personalized medicine technologies.

[3] In 2017 the city of Dimitrovgrad, the Ulyanovsk region, hosted the most important event in the history of Russian nuclear medicine: preoperational tests of the proton accelerator of the Federal High-Tech Center for Medical Radiology of the Federal Medical Biological Agency began. There is installation of high-tech equipment in the building of the PET-center, the facility is preparing for a phased commissioning.

[4] ICRP Strategic Plan 2016-2020, ICRP. – 2106 - 8p.