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ORPAS, an independent assessment, can be used to maintain or enhance the effectiveness of the programme and to identify in an objective and unbiased manner the areas where improvements may be required to meet international guidance and best practices. Such an appraisal tries to answer the question “Are arrangements adequate and will they work?”.

The appraisal is based on international standards and takes into account the specific conditions in the requesting member state. It also identifies specific national strengths, such as good practices in occupational radiation protection, that could be shared with other Member States.

What are the key objectives of ORPAS?
  • To provide the host country with an objective assessment of its arrangements for ORP. 
  • To identify areas where performance should be improved to meet international guidance and best practices, with the aim of achieving an optimized level of protection.
  • To make recommendations on actions to be taken to achieve such improvements.
  • To identify the strengths in the host country which may be unique and worthy of bringing to the attention of others.
  • To promote the use of self-assessment by the host country.
  • To determine whether the host country has made adequate arrangements for ORP and whether these arrangements are functioning to the extent that the practical provisions for ORP are effective and generally optimized.
What is the scope of ORPAS? 

The scope of ORPAS includes the review of the legislative and regulatory infrastructure for occupational radiation protection, technical services relating to protection and safety, such as services for personal dosimetry and the calibration of monitoring and measuring equipment, and practical implementation of Member States' arrangements for occupational radiation protection through radiation protection programmes by operators.

While each Member State is responsible for its own arrangements for occupational radiation protection, a request for an ORPAS mission can be sent to the IAEA to provide an appraisal of some or all aspects of the requesting country's arrangements for occupational radiation protection.

What facilities are invited to ORPAS? 

They usually come from the following areas:

  • Medical
  • Non Destructive Testing
  • Gauging
  • Oil Logging
  • NORM (including oil and gas industries, milling activity involving minerals containing NORM)
  • Research. Access the full list >>
ORPAS can help the Member State answer the following questions:
  • Is necessary legislative and regulatory ORP infrastructure in place and functioning? 
  • Are operators aware of their responsibilities? Do they have effective occupational radiation protection programmes in place and functioning?
  • Are technical service providers available and able to provide radiation protection services? These should be in compliance with the IAEA Radiation Protection and Safety of Radiation Sources: International Basic Safety Standards, in respect to:
    • Assessment of occupational exposure from external sources of radiation,
    • Assessment of occupational exposure due to intakes of radionuclides,
    • Workplace monitoring, 
    • Recording of occupational exposure, and
    • Advisory services.
  • Do all involved organizations have quality systems in place and functioning to ensure ongoing adherence to the standards with potential accreditation or certification?
  • Is safety culture promoted at facilities and in activities?