The Australian National Radiation Dose Register
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Initially established in 2010 for the uranium mining and milling industry, the Australian National Radiation Dose Register (ANRDR) is expanding to cover all occupationally exposed workers in Australia. The ANRDR will ensure that records of workers’ radiation doses are maintained in a centralised Register regardless of where or for whom the individual is working in Australia.
The ANRDR is the Commonwealth’s approved central record keeping agency for the dose records of its workers who are occupationally exposed to ionising radiation (RPS C-1, clause 3.1.24 (c)).
The ANRDR is an electronic database that is designed to store and maintain radiation dose records for workers who are occupationally exposed to radiation. Currently, the ANRDR is limited to workers in the uranium mining and milling industry, the mineral sands mining and processing industry and Commonwealth Government entities, however, expansion of the ANRDR to include workers exposed to radiation in other industries, such as the medical and aviation sectors, is in progress.
Workers can request a copy of their radiation dose history from ARPANSA. The dose history report will contain all past doses received while working in applicable industries in Australia, and while registered with the ANRDR.
The Dose Register is maintained and managed by the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA).
Prior to the commencement of the ANRDR, a worker’s doses were assessed and recorded by the employer. Whilst this ensured that dose records were maintained at the worksite, there was no system in place to monitor the cumulative dose received by a worker who moved between different employers, industries or jurisdictions. The ANRDR has been developed to overcome this gap in the management of dose records. Employers will still be required to maintain radiation dose records for workers in compliance with relevant state, territory or Commonwealth law, however, there may also be a requirement to report dose records to the ANRDR.
The development of the ANRDR began as a result of a recommendation made in a report from the Uranium Industry Framework Steering Group in 2006.
Recommendation 12 stated:
“The Australian Government should work with relevant State and Territory governments to establish cooperative arrangements with industry to ensure that permanent records of the radiological dose history of uranium industry individuals are collected, maintained and retrievable.”
As a result of this recommendation, the Department of Resources, Energy and Tourism (now the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science), and ARPANSA commenced development of the ANRDR.
The ANRDR was officially launched to the uranium industry in June 2011 following development of the Dose Register, including a tool for workers to be able to request their personal dose history report.
The ANRDR stores and maintains radiation dose information as well as some personal information.
There are a number of different types of radiation and various pathways that result in personal radiation exposure. The ANRDR records information on the doses received from the different types of radiation and pathways of exposure.
Personal information is also disclosed to ARPANSA to ensure that appropriate doses are matched to the correct worker. This personal information includes:
- Full name
- Date of birth
- Employee number (unique identifier)
All personal information is handled in accordance with the Privacy Act 1988 (Cwlth). Please refer to the ANRDR Privacy Statement for further information on the storage and use of personal information.
The ANRDR is used to maintain a registered worker’s cumulative dose history from data disclosed by their employer(s). It ensures that their dose history remains retrievable, regardless of whether a worker changes employers, moves to a different jurisdiction, or if an employer ceases to exist.
The data maintained in the Register is used to produce industry trends and comparisons across different work practices. This information will assist in developing better work practices to improve radiation safety for occupationally exposed workers in Australia. The published data will not identify or reveal personal information about individuals or details about employers who are registered with the ANRDR.
The ANRDR allows workers to track their personal doses received through the course of their employment. Workers whose dose records are stored and maintained in the ANRDR benefit from having their radiological dose records retrievable over the long-term.
Furthermore, the information contained in the ANRDR will help strengthen radiation safety practices for occupationally exposed workers in Australia.
Dose history reports can be requested by completing a dose history request form.
The service is provided free of charge by ARPANSA.