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New ionising radiation regulations to come into force
Under the new 'graded approach', radiation employers will need to notify, register or get consent, depending on the level of risk involved in their work.
Practices will be required to register with HSE

Veterinary practices using diagnostic radiography will need to register with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), under new regulations coming into force from 1 January, 2018.

Those with multiple sites will only need to register once. Some sites may also be required obtain consent.

The Ionising Radiation Regulations 2017 (IRR17) are set to replace existing regulations (IRR99), which may impact the way veterinary practices work.

Some of the changes include*:

  • how you tell HSE that you work with ionising radiation
  • the dose limit for exposure to the lens of the eye - from 150mSv to 20mSv in a year
  • a requirement to put in place procedures to estimate doses to members of the public
  • recording and analysis of significant events, i.e radiation accidents
  • removing the subsidiary dose limit for the abdomen of a woman of reproductive capacity.
* List not necessarily exhaustive

Under the new 'graded approach', radiation employers - which will now be referred to as 'employers' - will need to notify, register or get consent, depending on the level of risk involved in their work.

Ionising radiation occurs as either electromagnetic rays (such as X-rays and gamma rays), or particles (such as alpha and beta particles). It occurs naturally, e.g. radon gas, but can also be produced artificially.

Veterinary practices are advised to contact their radiation protection adviser (RPA) for advice on how the new regulations may affect them. Further information can be found on:

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New app to improve street dog welfare

News Story 1
 A new free app will support vital work in clinics caring for stray dogs around the world, experts say. Created by the University of Edinburgh, the tool allows vets to track the wellbeing of dogs going through catch-neuter-return schemes, which are common in countries with large numbers of strays.

Vets say the welfare of individual dogs can be overlooked during the process of capture, transport or surgery. The app, piloted across Asia and Africa, helps staff to monitor welfare, spot signs of distress and develop strategies to improve care. It was launched at BSAVA Congress on Friday 6 April.  

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News Shorts
Farm to fork traceability championed in new service

Defra has created a new information service to offer farm to fork traceability when the UK leaves the EU. The Livestock Information Service, which is set to be operational from 2019, will identify and track animal movements via electronic IDs, meaning the industry and government are better placed to respond in the event of a disease outbreak.

Environment secretary Michael Gove said: “This service will be instrumental in improving traceability and providing guarantees to consumers about the origin of their food. NFU President Minette Batters, among others, has helped lead the way on this, showing how it will drive a progressive and vibrant livestock industry once we leave the EU.”