The Radiation Safety Act 2016 came fully into force on 7 March 2017. The Act is administered by the Ministry of Health’s Office of Radiation Safety.
The Act sets out high-level safety and security obligations in sections 9–12. There are many different types of radiation use and the requirements are often very technical. The Act therefore authorises the issuing of codes of practice to set out more detailed requirements relating to individual areas of practice. This code applies to all activities associated with the administration of unsealed radiopharmaceuticals to patients to diagnose or treat disease, or for clinical or pre-clinical research. This includes, but is not limited to, the practices of nuclear medicine, positron emission tomography, in vivo diagnostics and sentinel node biopsy procedures that use radiopharmaceuticals.
Section 86(2) states ‘before issuing a code of practice, the Director [for Radiation Safety] must consult any person who the Director reasonably considers is likely to be affected by the proposed code.’ The purpose of this consultation document is to consult as required by section 86(2) and promote discussion. No decisions have been made about the final content.