Task Group 109
Ethics in Radiological Protection for Medical Diagnosis and Treatment

A Taskgroup under Committee 3 and Committee 4

The mandate of Task Group 109 is to develop an ICRP publication presenting the ethical aspects in the use of radiation in medicine, addressed to the radiological protection of patients, and intended for medical professionals, patients, the public, and authorities. This builds upon ICRP Publication 138 which identified the ethical values associated with the system of radiological protection for occupational, public and medical exposures, and for protection of the environment.

Although ethics cannot provide conclusive solutions in all specific cases, it can undoubtedly help in facilitating discussions among those acting to promote the well-being of individuals. The medical practice has a long history in moral philosophy, formalized in biomedical ethics in the late seventies, and these principles have been widely applied in medicine for patients and research subjects. A clear understanding of ethical values, together with the principles of radiological protection, can help address issues of potential conflict in decision making.

The publication to be developed will present the ethical issues in the context of the use of radiation in medicine, in specific patient care circumstances. Different care scenarios will be considered as examples on how and which reflections on ethical values can be of help in decision making process, with attention to do more good than harm and to personal dignity and respect. Proposed scenarios will include: radiological and nuclear medicine in pregnant patients, pediatrics, elderly patients, end of life scenario and medical screening.

François Bochud (Co-Chair), IRA CHUV, Switzerland
Marie-Claire Cantone (Co-Chair), University of Milan, Italy
Frederic Fahey (Member), Boston Children's Hospital, USA
Chieko Kurihara-Saio (Member), Japan
Alberto Lachos-Davilla (Member), Peru
Friedo Zölzer (Member), University of South Bohemia, Czech Republic
John Damilakis (Corresponding Member), European Alliance for Medical Radiation Protection Research (EURAMED), Greece
Bernard Le Guen (Corresponding Member), France
Jim Malone (Corresponding Member), Trinity College Dublin, Ireland
Margaret Murphy (Corresponding Member), Ireland
Maria del Rosario Perez (Corresponding Member), World Health Organisation (WHO), Switzerland