The 15th Ministerial Meeting of the Global Health Security Initiative was held in Tokyo, to reflect on emerging health security events of the last year and to explore collaborative actions to protect the health and safety of our populations, and to strengthen health security globally. Ministers/Secretaries/Commissioner from Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, UK, USA, and the European Commission attended. They discussed key priorities for collective preparedness and response to chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear threats, pandemic influenza, and other emerging infectious diseases, specifically the Ebola Virus outbreak in West Africa.
FMU’s Professor Seiji YASUMURA made a presentation on “Challenges in Fukushima after 3 years from the Great East Japan Disaster”. A representative from the USA expressed his high regard for the Fukushima Health Management Survey. Ministers/Secretaries/Commissioners agreed on working collaboratively to inform future planning for radiological and nuclear incidents within the health sector.
Fukushima Medical University (FMU) and IAEA agreed to conduct 3 projects in 2012. The 1st one is NA9/16: Enhancing radiation medicine education by building capacity of health professionals and medical students. The 2nd one is NA9/17: Strengthening research co-operation in radiation disaster medicine including post-traumatic stress disorders. And the 3rd one is NA/21: Development of a specific training package for medical radiation physicists in support of nuclear or radiological emergency situations.
An FMU-IAEA Consultancy Meeting was held 1-5 December to review NA9/16 and NA9/17 project activities implemented in 2013-2014 and to debate over the draft textbooks authored by the Science, Technology and Society (STS) specialists who participated in these programs. FMU & IAEA will add necessary content to them from the viewpoint of a disaster-stricken area, for publication in both English and Japanese, to advance radiation medicine education around the world.
The Tokyo International Amateur Radio Association (TIARA) and FMU organized an Emergency Communications Laboratory (EmComm Lab) event at TIARA’s regular meeting place in Meguro Ward. Extensive discussion and hands-on evaluation of equipment accompanied a presentation by FMU’s Dr. Ken Nollet, drawing on the expertise of TIARA members from around the world. As with Dr. Nollet’s 13 June 2014 presentation to TIARA, EmComm Lab was streamed online for members outside Japan, and annotated slides can be downloaded for personal scholarship and non-commercial educational activities within “fair use” copyright and other applicable laws. The notes associated with each slide concisely reconstruct what was said and done. Material has been added or edited for clarity and to accommodate a broader audience.
Part 2 introduces an outdoor equipment validation and proof-of-concept project that falls in between a tabletop exercise and a full-scale deployment.
Governments around the world recognize the Amateur Radio Service for its ability to promote international goodwill at all times, and to provide emergency communication when other channels are damaged or overloaded. TIARA, founded in 1972, is a forum for Amateur Radio operators of all nationalities who live in Tokyo or have a special interest in Japan.
November 28 EmComm Lab participants expressed their hopes for future programs. Bill Stenson (7J1AAB in Japan, NA2Y in America) was among the nominees to lead a future EmComm Lab. Otherwise known as William D. Stenson, founder of Forte, a science communications firm in Tokyo, Bill is active in the Hood River County Amateur Radio Emergency Service when he is stateside. In February, 2015, Bill Stenson will be in Salt Lake City, Utah to attend the All Hazards Incident Management Team, Communications Unit Leader Course (AHIMT COM UL). In the meantime, he recommends this reference from ARRL, the national association for Amateur Radio in the United States:
Dr. Wolfgang Weiss and Dr. Hiroshi Yasuda from UNSCEAR visited FMU on 13 November 2014. This informal visit followed an UNSCEAR workshop held the previous night at Fukushima University, just a few kilometers from our campus.
FMU staff spoke about several topics related to the Fukushima Health Management Survey. General remarks from Prof. Ohto and Prof. Yasumura were followed by details about the Basic Survey from Dr. Ishikawa and a PowerPoint presentation by Prof. Nollet on baseline results of the Thyroid Ultrasound Examination program.
Click here to view Dr. Nollet’s PowerPoint presentation.
Dr. Weiss talked about UNSCEAR’s plans for the future, including their willingness to impartially analyze data that FMU and other institutions publish in peer-reviewed scientific journals, with the intend of making comprehensive and widely accessible reports to the world every few years.
French Embassy attaché Mr. Christophe Xerri brought Colonel Bertrand Domeneghetti and Lieutenant Colonel Gilles Ahuir to FMU to study our experience since the Great East Japan Earthquake. They aim to improve French nuclear emergency preparedness.
Professor Arifumi Hasegawa made a presentation addressing their main questions:
– Which actions were taken within the very first days and hours?
– What actions were taken respectively for irradiated persons, potentially irradiated persons and the rest of the population?
We also supplied information on the following:
– How was the radiation dose received by the population measured?
– How is medical follow-up of the population implemented recently?