Keywords: medical exposure, nuclear law, radiological protection, medical standards, radioprotection, radiological risks, Directive 97&, #47, 43&, #47, Euratom, quality assurance, quality control, safety culture, radiology, nuclear medicine
EU normative framework and standards of radiological protection in medicine
This paper examines the normative framework of the European Union (EU) and member states in the field of radioprotection of individuals undergoing medical exposure, in the light of harmonisation on the basis of the European Atomic Energy Community (EAEC or EURATOM) directives and enforcement at the national level. It discusses to what extent medical standards in radioprotection vary in member states, and analyses the factors determining differences in national laws and regulations adopted in this area. Bearing in mind the emerging challenges for medical practices in radiology and nuclear medicine, on the one hand, and the implicit limitations of the direct regulation, on the other hand, we will argue that the law can stimulate self-organisation within the healthcare environment and induce the operators on the floor to self-reflective performance, in order to enhance the quality of services and to minimise radiological risks.