Online radiation safety training and a welcome break
Published: Jul 27, 2022
This blog post is being written from Cornwall, far away from the Ionactive office in Berkshire. Having a welcome break after the last few months. As the Covid Pandemic effects recede (we hope for good), Ionactive has been busy playing visit catch up. It has been so nice to get out and about and meet our clients from all around the UK. So far we have not ventured outside the UK, but still managed to undertake contract radiation shielding work for a company in New Zealand at the start of 2022.
Online radiation protection training
So with all those visits going on, as enjoyable and rewarding as they are, it has been nice to have some downtime towards the end of July 2022. Here is a view from our holiday cottage, something about the sea that is so relaxing and refreshing.
Running Ionactive means that even on holiday we are never fully away from the business of the day. In this regard we are taking time to update some training and pages around the website.
Ionactive radiation safety training over the next year
A key decision at this stage is what to do about our live public 2-day RPS training course at our training venue (Missenden Abbey, Buckinghamshire). After delivering this 10 months every year since 2003, our last course was March 2020 just before the first Covid Lockdown. Various training providers have had their own ideas on delivering training in an alternative way, at Ionactive we chose to design an online multi-media training system from the ground up. This featured Mark Ramsay in videos (to provide a live like experience), combined with slide shows, audio commentary, animations, puzzles and a test. We felt that Teams (et al) had their place for meetings and keeping the workforce informed, but not to deliver training over an extended period.
With over 600 delegates registered on our training platform, most undertaking RPS training, and some taking our new x-ray safety awareness course for the food industry, it leads us to some interesting observations which are becoming ‘more obvious still’ as time moves on. A few of these are as follows (in no particular order).
1) Delegates using our online system are from every sector of ionising radiation use.
2) We are delighted to have so many medical related delegates from all modalities (NHS and private), despite the course not being specifically designed for the medical sector. [Medical radiation is such an interesting area of radiation protection that is features in all our training courses].
3) We have had block orders (typically for 5-10 places) where a company training supervisor has specifically stated they want the bespoke online 24/7 flexible approach for their employees, rather than sending them 'on mass' to a central location for training.
4) Online multi media training is not for everyone (and some potential delegates have told us as much).
5) We love live face to face training – which is why we have run several bespoke radiation safety training courses over the last few months with many more planned during the rest of 2022.
6) Delegates on our live training courses like their course material to be hosted using our online training platform – it saves paper and it is immediately available wherever they are (and it is also updateable).
Our radiation safety training goals over the next 6 months
The sum of the above points mean we have to make a cautious but not permanent decision to not run 2-day public face to face RPS training at our Missenden Abbey venue for the foreseeable future.
It should be stressed that this is not a permanent decision, company / delegate expectations are still in a flux post pandemic and it might take another year before the ‘new way’ settles down for the future delivery of safety courses. We are delivering online delegate numbers each week which we would have been lucky to train live in a good month during our public events pre March 2020. This is allowing us to develop new training products and increase the level of onsite bespoke live training we can deliver.
We understand there will be some disappointment and are aware that a few of our delegates previously trained live by Ionactive, have moved on to other providers. This is choice - you only need to Google to find radiation training providers and we are sure there is a course available for every UK delegate.
The next 12 months will be an interesting time in the radiation safety training world. Our international online RPO course is nearing completion so look out for that if you are reading this from outside the UK.
Radiation Protection Adviser and Company Director for Ionactive Consulting Limited.