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Dental Radiography: Radiation Protection in Dental Practice

Learn the UK safety requirements and legislation for carrying out safe dental X-rays on this CPD course for dental professionals.

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Dental Radiography: Radiation Protection in Dental Practice

Discover the core principles of dental radiography and X-ray exposure

Led by experts from the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA)’s Dental X-ray Protection Service (DXPS), this course will improve your understanding of the requirements for radiation protection in dental practice and provide you with the skills to take on the role of Radiation Protection Supervisor in your dental practice.

Develop your professional knowledge around the risks of X-radiation

This CPD course will equip you with the information and skills to ensure that dental radiography is carried out in a safe manner and that the requirements of key radiation protection legislation are complied with.

You’ll explore the potential hazards of dental X-radiation and the importance of restricting staff and patient radiation exposure as far as practicable.

Learn about UK dental radiation protection legislation and guidance

You’ll also familiarise yourself with relevant radiation protection guidance and legislation, including the Ionising Radiations Regulations 2017, the Ionising Radiation (Medical Exposure) Regulations 2017, as well as the UK guidance for users of dental X-ray equipment.

By the end of the course, you’ll be able to apply the basic principles of practical radiation protection in a dental practice and be ready to act as Radiation Protection Supervisor in your dental practice.

Does this course count as core CPD for dentists?

Yes, this course provides five hours of continuous professional development (CPD) training. Current UK legislation and guidance recommend that certain staff at dental practices to undertake five hours verifiable CPD in radiography or radiation protection, every five years.

Syllabus

  • Week 1

    X-ray concepts and risks

    • Welcome to the course

      Introducing what the course will cover and who you will be learning with.

    • Basic radiation concepts

      This activity introduces X-ray equipment used in dental practices, explains how X-rays are produced and briefly describes X-ray properties.

    • Radiation hazards and dose limitation

      This activity introduces the standard units used when working with X-rays and explores why it is important to regulate radiation exposure.

    • End of week 1

      Testing your knowledge from week 1 and summarising what we have covered this week.

  • Week 2

    Regulatory requirements - planning

    • Regulatory requirements

      IRR17 and IRMER17 contain vital regulatory requirements, this activity will explore the details of these documents.

    • Expert advice and training

      This activity covers training requirements for IRR17 and IRMER17 and looks at when and from whom you should seek expert advice.

    • Planning for a new practice

      Using what you have learned so far you will review a scenario then discuss your solutions.

    • End of week 2

      Testing your knowledge and summarising what you have learned in week 2.

  • Week 3

    Practical protection from X-radiation

    • Restricting doses to patients

      In this activity, explore the features of the X-ray equipment and see how patient doses are restricted in practice.

    • Restricting doses to dental practice staff

      The measures in place to restrict doses of radiation to dental practice staff are discussed in this activity.

    • End of week 3

      Testing your knowledge and summarising what you have learned in week 3.

  • Week 4

    Regulatory requirements - management of work with X-radiation

    • Putting plans into action

      The activity will cover the outcomes from the radiation risk assessment and look at how the regulations are put into practice.

    • Written procedures for radiation safety - IRR17

      The local rules are covered further in this activity as well as the designated staff member(s) who supervise them within the practice.

    • Written procedures for radiation safety - IRMER17

      In this activity, the IRMER17 regulations are revisited, including the procedures and protocols that the employer must have in place.

    • End of week 4

      Testing your knowledge and summarising what you have learned in week 4.

  • Week 5

    Regulatory requirements - Quality Assurance

    • Introducing Quality Assurance

      This activity introduces the quality assurance required by the UK regulations.

    • QA of Equipment

      The Quality Assurance checks required for X-ray equipment are covered in this activity.

    • QA of Clinical Images

      This activity will cover the image quality assurance audits and the quality assurance required for protocols and procedures.

    • End of course

      Testing your knowledge and summarising the content covered throughout the course.

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and learn at your own pace. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

Learning on this course

You can take this self-guided course and learn at your own pace. On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Explore the potential hazards associated with X-radiation and the importance of restricting the exposure of staff and patients as far as is reasonably practicable
  • Identify the principal requirements of relevant UK legislation and guidance, namely IRR17, IRMER17 and the Dental Guidance Notes, 2nd Edition
  • Apply the basic principles of practical radiation protection in a dental practice
  • The ability to take on the role of the Radiation Protection Supervisor in relation to X-radiography in a dental practice

Who is the course for?

This CPD training course is designed for dental professionals who are involved in work with dental X-ray equipment. This includes dentists, hygienists, therapists, dental nurses and practice managers.

Others working in the dental or general healthcare sectors may also find the course interesting, but will not have the same professional requirement to undertake verifiable CPD.

Who will you learn with?

Joanne is the group leader of UKHSA's Dental X-ray Protection Services (DXPS) and is a Radiation Protection Adviser and Medical Physics Expert with more than 30 years experience.

Andrew is an experienced Radiation Protection Adviser and Medical Physics Expert and provides advice to a wide range of users of ionising radiation. He specialises in dental radiation protection.

A Medical Physics Expert and principal scientist working in UKHSA's Dental X-ray Protection Services. He has a substantial amount of experience in helping dental practices work safely with radiation.

Graham is the technical manager for UKHSA’s Dental X-ray Protection Services (UKHSA-DXPS) and is an experienced Radiation Protection Adviser and Medical Physics Expert.

Ruth leads the radiation protection consultancy team of UKHSA’s Dental X-ray Protection Services and is an experienced Radiation Protection Adviser and Medical Physics Expert

Who developed the course?

UK Health Security Agency

The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) is responsible for planning, preventing and responding to external health threats by providing intellectual, scientific and operational leadership at national and local level, as well as on the global stage. UKHSA is an executive agency, sponsored by the Department of Health and Social Care.

What's included?

This is a premium course. These courses are designed for professionals from specific industries looking to learn with a smaller group of like-minded individuals.

  • Learn best practices from experts
  • Learn from the experience of other health professionals
  • Fit learning around your schedule with unlimited access
  • Get evidence of learning outcomes and CPD hours
  • Certificate of Achievement to prove your success when you're eligible
  • Download and print your Certificate of Achievement anytime

Still want to know more? Check out our FAQs

Learning on FutureLearn

Your learning, your rules

  • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps, but you can complete them as quickly or slowly as you like
  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
  • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

Join a global classroom

  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
  • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
  • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

Map your progress

  • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
  • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

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