Hostname: page-component-758b78586c-dtt57 Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2023-11-30T04:01:36.286Z Has data issue: false Feature Flags: { "corePageComponentGetUserInfoFromSharedSession": true, "coreDisableEcommerce": false, "useRatesEcommerce": true } hasContentIssue false

Prioritizing Communication About Radiation Risk Reduction in the United States: Results from a Multi-criteria Decision Analysis

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  23 June 2020

Rennie W. Ferguson*
Affiliation:
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Department of Environmental Health & Engineering, Baltimore, Maryland
Daniel J. Barnett
Affiliation:
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Department of Environmental Health & Engineering, Baltimore, Maryland
Ryan David Kennedy
Affiliation:
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Department of Health, Behavior and Society, Baltimore, Maryland
Tara Kirk Sell
Affiliation:
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Department of Environmental Health & Engineering, Baltimore, Maryland Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, Baltimore, Maryland
Jessica S. Wieder
Affiliation:
National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurement, Bethesda, Maryland
Ernst W. Spannhake
Affiliation:
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Department of Environmental Health & Engineering, Baltimore, Maryland
*
Correspondence and reprint requests to Rennie W. Ferguson, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD 21205; (e-mail: rfergu18@jhu.edu).

Abstract

Objectives:

The lack of radiation knowledge among the general public continues to be a challenge for building communities prepared for radiological emergencies. This study applied a multi-criteria decision analysis (MCDA) to the results of an expert survey to identify priority risk reduction messages and challenges to increasing community radiological emergency preparedness.

Methods:

Professionals with expertise in radiological emergency preparedness, state/local health and emergency management officials, and journalists/journalism academics were surveyed following a purposive sampling methodology. An MCDA was used to weight criteria of importance in a radiological emergency, and the weighted criteria were applied to topics such as sheltering-in-place, decontamination, and use of potassium iodide. Results were reviewed by respondent group and in aggregate.

Results:

Sheltering-in-place and evacuation plans were identified as the most important risk reduction measures to communicate to the public. Possible communication challenges during a radiological emergency included access to accurate information; low levels of public trust; public knowledge about radiation; and communications infrastructure failures.

Conclusions:

Future assessments for community readiness for a radiological emergency should include questions about sheltering-in-place and evacuation plans to inform risk communication.

Type
Original Research
Copyright
Copyright © 2020 Society for Disaster Medicine and Public Health, Inc.

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

REFERENCES

Becker, SM. Risk communication and radiological/nuclear terrorism: a strategic view. Health Phys. 2011;101(5):551-558. doi: 10.1097/HP.0b013e318222ec5c CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. Exploring medical and public health preparedness for a nuclear incident: a workshop. 2019. https://www.nationalacademies.org/our-work/exploring-medical-and-public-health-preparedness-for-a-nuclear-incident-a-workshop. Accessed May 23, 2020.Google Scholar
The Peter Sandman Risk Communication Website. Dr. Peter M. Sandman Outrage Management Index. http://www.psandman.com/index-OM.htm. Accessed December 13, 2019.Google Scholar
Slovic, P. Perception of risk. Science. 1987;236(4799):280-285. doi: 10.1126/science.3563507 CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Svendsen, ER, Yamaguchi, I, Tsuda, T, et al. Risk communication strategies: lessons learned from previous disasters with a focus on the Fukushima radiation accident. Curr Environ Health Rep. 2016;3(4):348-359. doi: 10.1007/s40572-016-0111-2 CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Pascale, C-M. Vernacular epistemologies of risk: the crisis in Fukushima. Curr Sociol. 2017;65(1):3-20. doi: 10.1177/0011392115627284 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Nakayama, C, Sato, O, Sugita, M, et al. Lingering health-related anxiety about radiation among Fukushima residents as correlated with media information following the accident at Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. PLoS One. 2019;14(5):e0217285. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0217285 CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Whitcomb, RC, Ansari, AJ, Buzzell, JJ, et al. A public health perspective on the U.S. response to the Fukushima radiological emergency. Health Phys. 2015;108(3):357-363. doi: 10.1097/HP.0000000000000198 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
CDC. Radiation emergencies. More information on types of radiation emergencies. https://www.cdc.gov/nceh/radiation/emergencies/moretypes.htm. Published April 22, 2019. Accessed November 19, 2019.Google Scholar
International Atomic Energy Agency. The Radiological Accident in Goiânia. Vienna: IAEA; 1988.Google Scholar
CDC. Radiation emergencies. https://www.cdc.gov/nceh/radiation/emergencies/index.htm. Published September 3, 2019. Accessed December 13, 2019.Google Scholar
O’Brien, EC, Taft, R, Geary, K, et al. Best practices in ranking communicable disease threats: a literature review, 2015. Euro Surveill. 2016;21(17). doi: 10.2807/1560-7917.ES.2016.21.17.30212 CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Cox, R, Sanchez, J, Revie, CW. Multi-criteria decision analysis tools for prioritising emerging or re-emerging infectious diseases associated with climate change in Canada. PLoS One. 2013;8(8):e68338. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0068338 CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Guest, G, Bunce, A, Johnson, L. How many interviews are enough? An experiment with data saturation and variability. Field Methods. 2006;18(1):59-82. doi: 10.1177/1525822X05279903 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Pope, C, Ziebland, S, Mays, N. Qualitative research in health care. Analysing qualitative data. BMJ. 2000;320(7227):114-116. doi: 10.1136/bmj.320.7227.114 CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
USDA. What is rural? https://www.nal.usda.gov/ric/what-is-rural. Accessed December 13, 2019.Google Scholar
Open Data Network. https://www.opendatanetwork.com/. Accessed December 13, 2019.Google Scholar
MCCormick, LC, Tajeu, GS, Klapow, J. Mental health consequences of chemical and radiologic emergencies: a systematic review. Emerg Med Clin North Am. 2015;33(1):197-211. doi: 10.1016/j.emc.2014.09.012 CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
McCabe, OL, Semon, NL, Thompson, CB, et al. Building a national model of public mental health preparedness and community resilience: validation of a dual-intervention, systems-based approach. Disaster Med Public Health Prep. 2014;8(6):511-526. doi: 10.1017/dmp.2014.119 CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
National Association of County & City Health Officials. A mixed-methods approach to understanding radiation preparedness within local health departments. March 2017. http://toolbox.naccho.org/api/ToolBlob?blobKey=41c7da15-cd6e-4d21-a9e0-a2a798533cf2&fileName=Understanding%20Rad%20Prep%20within%20LHDs.pdf. Accessed May 23, 2020.Google Scholar
Errett, NA, Barnett, DJ, Thompson, CB, et al. Assessment of medical reserve corps volunteers’ emergency response willingness using a threat- and efficacy-based model. Biosecur Bioterror. 2013;11(1):29-40. doi: 10.1089/bsp.2012.0047 CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Ingram, RJ. Emergency response to radiological releases: have we communicated effectively to the first responder communities to prepare them to safely manage these incidents? Health Phys. 2018;114(2):208-213. doi: 10.1097/HP.0000000000000757 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bass, SB, Gordon, TF, Maurer, L, et al. How do low-literacy populations perceive “dirty bombs”? Implications for preparedness messages. Health Secur. 2016;14(5):331-344. doi: 10.1089/hs.2016.0037 CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
International Atomic Energy Agency. Report on International Symposium on Communicating Nuclear and Radiological Emergencies to the Public. Vienna: International Atomic Energy Agency; 2018.Google Scholar
Wolkin, AF, Schnall, AH, Nakata, NK, et al. Getting the message out: social media and word-of-mouth as effective communication methods during emergencies. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2018:1-6. doi: 10.1017/S1049023X1800119X Google ScholarPubMed
ASPR TRACIE. Topic collection: social media in emergency response. https://asprtracie.hhs.gov/technical-resources/73/social-media-in-emncy-response/60. Accessed December 13, 2019.Google Scholar
Locke, PA. Communication of radiation benefits and risks in decision making: some lessons learned. Health Phys. 2011;101(5):626-629. doi: 10.1097/HP.0b013e3182299539 CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Seeger, MW, Pechta, LE, Price, SM, et al. A conceptual model for evaluating emergency risk communication in public health. Health Secur. 2018;16(3):193-203. doi: 10.1089/hs.2018.0020 CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Covello, VT. Risk communication, radiation, and radiological emergencies: strategies, tools, and techniques. Health Phys. 2011;101(5):511-530. doi: 10.1097/HP.0b013e3182299549 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Palinkas, LA, Horwitz, SM, Green, CA, et al. Purposeful sampling for qualitative data collection and analysis in mixed method implementation research. Adm Policy Ment Health. 2015;42(5):533-544. doi: 10.1007/s10488-013-0528-y CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed