The article “Lessons being learned between the Covid-19 pandemic and radiological emergencies: report from experts’ discussions” is now in press in the Journal of Radiological Protection and can be accessed here.
The article is the compilation of the three online webinars conducted by SHARE with leading experts, scholars and practitioners from a wide range of disciplines essential for emergency management and longterm risk governance. The first webinar debated the lessons we are learning from the Covid-19 pandemic for radiological risk communication, the second explored issues around longer-term outcomes of a crisis and how to balance these with short-term actions whilst the third focused on the key challenges of the ‘transition phase’, using lessons learned from Chernobyl (1986) and Fukushima Daichii (2011) accidents. The paper reviews the discussion and provides valuable lessons for the radiation protection community. Results of the discussion indicated that: i) non-radiological and non-epidemiological consequences of emergencies, e.g. psychological (mental health), societal and economic, should not be underestimated; ii) multidisciplinary expertise is imperative for communication efforts and for effective emergency management, including decision-making in the application of protective measures; iii) stakeholder engagement, including the involvement of the potentially affected population, should be encouraged from an early stage and iv) trust is increased if policy-makers and main science agencies show a unified voice.
We are extremely grateful to experts who voluntarily participated as panellists in the webinars, as well as to the moderators.