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Q&A with Andy Rogers, President of the British Institute of Radiology

What are the main aims of the BIR?

“The British Institute of Radiology (BIR) is for everyone working in imaging, radiation oncology and the underlying sciences and that’s what sets us apart from other societies. We aim to support the work of our members and their colleagues to achieve professional excellence and provide continuing professional development for our community. We are an international organisation and publish cutting edge research for our authors and readers across the world. Ultimately, I see the BIR as a real community of all the professions involved in imaging and radiation and oncology and an important aim is to influence and connect with the sector and act as a conduit for action, education and debate!”

Why did you decide to run an initiative on PPE?

“The idea originated from the BIR’s Radiation Safety special interest group. They noticed that it was not uncommon to see people wearing protective equipment incorrectly and not looking after it properly when not in use. With no authorised practical guidance materials available, they set about writing some themselves.”  

What do you hope the campaign will achieve?

“We hope to raise awareness about the importance of operators protecting themselves and to highlight how poor fit or badly stored protection can lead to harmful radiation getting through. It is crucial that protective aprons, thyroid and eye wear are worn and fitted correctly to protect the body against dangerous radiation levels. Incorrect storage can cause the PPE to become damaged and that immediately reduces its effectiveness.”

What has been the reaction so far?

“It’s been really positive! There was nothing like this around before and people have been impressed by the clear layout of the posters, videos and book.”