The Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR) has served an Improvement Notice on Siemens Healthcare Limited after the loss of a package of radiopharmaceuticals while in transit.
The package was lost during its transport between Siemens’ Mount Vernon Hospital in London and London Bridge Hospital in September 2021.
There was no harm to the public or the environment and the consignment was subsequently retrieved and all materials accounted for.
Radiopharmaceuticals are radioactive medicines commonly used for the diagnosis and treatment of diseases such as cancer which are routinely transported to medical facilities across the country. Transport arrangements must meet strict regulatory requirements to protect workers and the public.
After the incident was reported to ONR, an investigation was carried out into Siemens Healthcare Limited’s handling of the loss of the package.
ONR’s investigation found shortfalls in the company’s radiation risk assessment for the transport of the material, and that the company did not have appropriate plans in place to respond to the loss of the material.
The Improvement Notice has been issued under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, Section 2(1) and 3(1) and Ionising Radiations Regulations 2017 Regulation 8 – Radiation Risk Assessment.
Siemens Healthcare has made progress in improving its arrangements since the incident but further work is needed to meet the required standards. ONR is providing regulatory guidance and the Improvement Notice must be complied with by 21 January 2022.
* Siemens Healthcare Limited are Trading as Siemens Healthineers PETNET (Mt Vernon).