Most Hospitals Don’t Properly Secure Radiological Material

Nearly four out of five high-risk hospitals across the country have failed to properly secure radiological material that could be used in a “dirty bomb,” according to congressional investigators.

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) report said that National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) has completed security upgrades at only 321 of 1,503 medical facilities it identified as high-risk because they store extensive amounts of radiological material, The Washington Post reports. NNSA said it will not be able to complete the upgrades until 2025.

The GAO report blamed the delay on security requirements that are voluntary and too broad.

The GAO recommends, among other things, that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) strengthen its security requirements by providing medical facilities with specific measures they must take to develop and sustain a more effective security program. The report claims NRC neither agreed nor disagreed with this recommendation and stated that its existing security requirements are adequate.

Read the full story.

Read the report.

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