Developing a Model for Hospitals’ Emergency Department Preparedness in Radiation and Nuclear Incidents and Nuclear Terrorism in Iran

Milad Ahmadi Marzaleh, Rita Rezaee, Abbas Rezaianzadeh, Mahnaz Rakhshan, Gholamhassan Haddadi, Mahmoudreza Peyravi


Objective: To develop a national model for hospitals’ Emergency Department (ED) preparedness when facing radiation and nuclear incidents as well as nuclear terrorism in Iran.

Methods: This analytical study was carried out in 2019 via Delphi technique in two rounds and prioritization using a pairwise questionnaire. Using classic Delphi technique and pairwise comparison, the components were given to 32 specialists in emergency medicine, nuclear medicine, medical physics, nuclear physics, radiobiology and radiation protection, health in disaster and emergency, and passive defense. Finally, the national model was developed by holding two focus group sessions.

Results: The results from the two rounds of Delphi technique showed that 31 factors of preparedness were classified into three main classes, namely staff, stuff, and structure (system). Only three factors were excluded and the rest were agreed upon by the specialists. Given the weight of each class, it was found that staff preparedness and stuff preparedness had the highest and lowest priorities, respectively.

Conclusion: Comprehensive preparedness requires enhancing and promoting cultural, social, economic, and political levels. Indeed, all preparedness levels should be promoted in alignment with each other. Hence, governments should align their policies to manage such incidents.


Preparedness; Emergency department; Hospital; Radiation incidents; Nuclear incidents; Terrorism

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