Canadian biodosimetry capacity for response to radiation emergencies
D. Wilkinson, T. Segura, L. Prud’homme-Lalonde, D. Mullins, S. Lachapelle, S. Qutob, E. Thorleifson, R. Wilkins, D. Morrison, J.-A. Dolling, D. Boreham
In December 2001, Canada's response to the international political climate was launched by the creation of the Chemical, Biological, Radiological/Nuclear Research & Technology Initiative (CRTI). The National Biological Dosimetry Response Plan (NBDRP), established through partnering the expertise of three federal departments and one university, was created in response to this initiative. The NBDRP objectives were to develop a network of laboratories with expertise to perform biological dosimetry by cytogenetics and to investigate new technologies that may be applicable in the development of the new biodosimetry program. Since the creation of the NBDRP, Canada has made significant progress in enhancing expertise and resources to be better prepared for radiological/nuclear events. Through participation in exercises, the existing capacities were tested and recommendations for improvements were made. This paper describes the results from two exercises. The first exercise was designed to test the culturing, analysis, and reporting procedures within a single laboratory, and the second exercise was intended to test the capacity of the NBDRP. Future exercises will further challenge the network resulting in an improved national response capability.