The current state of the system of medical protection of the personnel of the Armed Forces of Ukraine from radiation-nuclear threats and terrorism
Background. Today, situation in the field of chemical, nuclear and radiation safety in Ukraine is an extremely unstable. In such conditions, there in an increase in the role of the Preventive Medicine Service of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine (PMS MDU), which provides medical protection in the conditions of radiation-nuclear and chemical threats. The purpose of the research: analysis of the state of the system of medical protection of service members of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the conditions of radiation, nuclear and chemical threats and terrorism. Materials and methods. The analysis of publications concerning the peculiarities of chemical and radiation safety of the state over the past 20 years has been carried out. Data on the state of nuclear and radiation safety in Ukraine were considered according to the annual reports of the State Emergency Service of Ukraine (SESU). Results. Today, Ukraine lacks nuclear and chemical weapons, however, the existence of terrorist threats and the possible consequences of natural, man-made, military and social emergencies, especially in connection with the marked aggravation of the domestic political situation in the country and the interference of the Russian Federation in the internal affairs of Ukraine, creates extremely a threatening situation in terms of nuclear and chemical threats. According to the SESU, 1004 industrial objects are registered in the territory of Ukraine, in which more than 219.6 thousand tons of hazardous chemical compounds are stored or used in the process of production, about 13 million people live in areas of probable pollution. Terrorist sabotage on hazardous sites can lead to anthropogenic and military emergencies, the extent of which can be compared to the consequences of the use of weapons of mass destruction. In these conditions, the role of military experts in toxicology, radiology and medical protection is substantially increasing. Today, the tasks of the PMS MDU are: prevention of harmful effects of environmental factors, control over the observance of hygienic requirements in the work of personnel with sources of ionizing radiation, aggressive liquids, electromagnetic fields and other harmful factors and the provision of their individual protective equipment; control over elimination of causes and conditions of occupational diseases, poisonings, radiation damage, organization and control over decontamination and degassing. Monitoring of potentially dangerous situations is carried out by the mobile sanitary and epidemiological teams (MSET) of the PMS MDU in the ATO zone. The assessment and prognosis of the impact of critical infrastructure threats is constantly assessed. In addition, the mobile units conduct expert examination of food, drinking water, sources of water supply and other objects of the environment for contamination with radioactive, toxic and hazardous chemicals, and organization and control of decontamination and degassing. The MSET of the PMS MDU is deployed with medical mobile laboratory based on ZIL-131 car with a lowdown trailer, which can perform chemo-toxicological studies — 15 per day, radiometric (dosimetry) studies — 90–100 per day. The forces and regular means of constant readiness of MSET of the PMS MDU able to conduct sanitary treatment of man/hour — 144 in the summer, 96 in the winter, chamber disinfection (disinfection), decontamination: 180 man/hours in summer, 120 — in winter. There are topical issues: the outdated material and technical base of the PMS MDU (automotive equipment, laboratory equipment, lack of devices, environmental factors survey, etc.); the absence of production in Ukraine of certain means for medical protection of military personnel under the influence of dangerous radiation and chemical factors in order to prevent damage and to reduce the striking effect. In addition, in previous years, there was a decrease in the number of specialists of the PMS MDU for military toxicology, radiology and medical protection. In these circumstances, the training of military doctors on military toxicology, radiology and medical protection, one of the scientific and practical branches that provides separate components of national security, becomes relevant. The issue of improving the level of postgraduate training of military doctors by updating the basic educational material on military toxicology, radiology and medical protection is very topical, taking into account current knowledge, practical experience and NATO standards. Conclusions. The current state of the system of medical protection of service members of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in conditions of radiation-nuclear, chemical threats and terrorism cannot guarantee the necessary level of safety for personnel and population. Improvement of the situation in the system of medical protection can be accomplished by strengthening the material and technical support of specialized units of the Preventive Medicine Service of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine; introduction of modern technologies and standards; introduction of new forms of training and improvement of existing curricula in order to meet the needs of a wide range of military and civilian specialists in the areas of military toxicology, radiology, chemical, radiation safety, modern anti-chemical and anti-radiation protection of troops in emergency situations, man-made disasters and in a special period.
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