World News – GB – A roundtable discussion on the future of nuclear medicine and radioactive waste


Some of Australia’s leaders in nuclear medicine will meet today to discuss the importance of nuclear medicine, research and radioactive waste management

The Minister for Resources, Water and Northern Australia, Keith Pitt, said the round table, to be held at Parliament House, comes as crucial legislation is presented to Parliament to establish a national radioactive waste management facility in Kempa, South Australia

Minister Pitt said: “About 80 percent of the low- and medium-level radioactive waste produced in Australia is directly related to the production of nuclear medicine”

“The facility will play a critical role in the nuclear medicine industry in Australia, and our ability to drive further innovations in nuclear medicine and research

“Along with the benefits of Australia’s ability to generate nuclear medicine in the past, present and future, comes the responsibility to properly manage the by-product including radioactive waste

“This is the reason for our progress in establishing a National Facility for Radioactive Waste Management in Kempa

“We all know someone who has relied on nuclear medicine for diagnosis or treatment, be it for cancer, heart disease or other conditions.

“Nuclear medicine is the cornerstone of the modern health system that we all enjoy, and I look forward to discussing its exciting applications and future innovations”

The round table will focus on innovations in the pipeline and the corresponding increased need to improve the management of radioactive waste currently stored at around 100 sites across the country

Dr. David Gillespie, a former gastroenterologist and former Assistant Secretary of Health, will chair a section of the Round Table

Dr. Gillespie said 95 percent of Australia’s nuclear waste is low-level and consists of gloves, needles and transport containers

« The waste comes from nuclear medicine facilities used for PET scans and for diagnosing and treating many types of cancer, » he said.

In person and online, the Roundtable will bring together physicians, scientists, academics, and public servants, with a fine representation of:

Minister Pitt said he looks forward to meeting with members of the nuclear medicine community to discuss the growing need for Australia to better manage our radioactive waste.

“I would like to thank the attendees and those who will contribute to the dialogue on medical innovation and peaceful nuclear medicine in Australia and future research.”

Radioactive Waste, Radioactive Decay, Australia, Nuclear Medicine, Keith Pitt

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