Guidance in managing patients following radiation events

Tener Goodwin Veenema, Clifton P. Thornton

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


The threat of a radiological or nuclear disaster is ever-present. If such an event were to occur, hospitals would experience a surge of patients and advanced practice nurses (APNs) in the emergency department would be expected to immediately respond. To mitigate the effects of the disaster, treat patients, and prevent self-contamination, APNs must be well informed of nuclear disaster management and clinical treatment of radiation exposure. Understanding the effects of exposure, pathophysiology of radiation syndromes, and the basic tenants of radiation safety is essential for APNs. APNs will be required to utilize personal protective equipment during treatment and perform unique tasks including disaster triage, decontamination, environmental management, and radiological survey while tending to the psychological needs of affected individuals. An integrative review of peer-reviewed literature was conducted regarding the nursing clinical guidelines for radioactive/nuclear disaster management, revealing limited information pertaining to the role of nursing in radiological emergency management and decontamination

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)197-208
Number of pages12
JournalAdvanced Emergency Nursing Journal
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 1 2015


  • Advanced practice providers
  • Clinical practice guidelines
  • Disaster
  • Nurse practitioners
  • Nursing
  • Radiation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency Medicine
  • Emergency


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