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Status and Issues of Occupational Exposure Protection for Nurses Involved in Radiation Therapy - a Nationwide Survey in Japan

Purpose: This study aimed to clarify nurses’ knowledge, awareness, and safe behavioral practices regarding occupational exposure. Methods: A mail-based questionnaire survey was conducted for 2,820 nurses engaged in radiation medicine and working in randomly selected hospitals in Japan. Results: Overall, 1,385 questionnaire responses were obtained (1284 females and 87 males; average clinical experience of 19.12±8.7 years, and 49.1% collection rate), and 1,370 were included in the analyses (98.9% valid response rate). It was found that 40% the content of basic nursing education on radiation treatment, which was “insufficient” in terms of quantity and quality. Occupational exposure protection measures were different depending on the organization size and position, with significantly higher rates of protective equipment use and manual maintenance in organizations with >400 beds and considerably higher rates of use of “partitioning screen,” “neck guard,” and “protective goggles” by nurse administration than by nurses during emergency interventional radiology. Additionally, only 46% of the general wards correctly answered that “a distance of >2 m” was required when using mobile X-ray equipment. These results indicate that nurse administrators and nurses involved in radiation therapy have insufficient professional knowledge and skills and that nurses in general wards lack knowledge about radiation therapy. Therefore, a systematic risk management program is necessary.

Occupational Radiation, Radiation Nursing, Nurse Administrator, Nurse, Safe Behavior Practices

Satsuki Shiratori, Fumiko Oishi, Yuka Hayama. (2023). Status and Issues of Occupational Exposure Protection for Nurses Involved in Radiation Therapy - a Nationwide Survey in Japan. American Journal of Nursing Science, 12(3), 56-63.

Copyright © 2023 Authors retain the copyright of this article.
This article is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License ( which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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