Dosimeters are used to monitor your occupational dose from radioactive material or radiation-producing equipment. The University's Radiation Safety Program strives, to the extent practicable, to maintain doses at levels that are As Low As (is) Reasonably Achievable (ALARA). For those individuals working in the research laboratory setting, dosimeters will be issued based on the nuclide and total activity that will be used. Dosimeters will be issued to x-ray producing equipment users in the medical center in accordance with radiology and other medical center policies.

Please note that alpha and low-energy beta radiation will not be detected by these dosimeters and therefore, dosimeters are not issued to individuals using only alpha or low energy beta emitting nuclides. These types of radiation are not penetrating and do not contribute to whole body or deep doses.

It is the responsibility of each department or PI to identify new users who will be working with sources of radiation and advise them to contact EHS regarding the need for a dosimeter.

Guidelines for Issuance of Dosimeters

The following table will be used as guidance to determine if an individual should be issued a dosimeter to monitor external dose. The guidelines are generally based on total activity used over a one month time period.

Radioisotope(s) Activity (mCi) Type of Monitoring
C-14, H-3, P-33 & S-35 any amount none required
P-32 < 6 mCi none required
>= 6 mCi
< 30 mCi
ring dosimeter
>= 30 mCi ring dosimeter & whole body dosimeter
Ca-45 < 50 mCi none required
>= 50 mCi ring dosimeter
Low Energy Gamma Ray Emitters
< 200 keV (e.g. I-123, I-125, Tc-99m, Tl-201)
< 50 mCi none required
>= 50 mCi ring dosimeter & whole body dosimeter
High Energy Gamma Ray Emitters
>= 200 keV (e.g. Cr-51, I-131, Co-60, Cs-137)
< 2 mCi none required
>= 2 mCi
< 5 mCi
ring dosimeter
>= 5 mCi ring dosimeter & whole body dosimeter
Before a dosimeter can be issued, the applicant must:
  1. complete, and submit to EHS, a Dosimeter Application:
  2. complete online radiation safety training (see below);
  3. understand prudent practices for wearing a dosimeter (see Instructions for Use of Dosimeter below); and
  4. be fully informed about NRC Regulatory Guide 8.13 - Instructions Concerning Prenatal Radiation Exposure.
    • Declaration of Pregnancy Form - word | pdf
    • Withdrawal of Pregnancy Declaration Form - word | pdf

For dosimeter wearers who become pregnant, the Declaration of Pregnancy form provides the University (licensee) with information to "ensure that the dose equivalent to the embryo/fetus during the entire pregnancy, due to the occupational exposure of a declared pregnant woman, does not exceed 0.5 rem (5 mSv)".

University of Virginia Policy ID:SEC-010 - Radiation Protection during Pregnancy contains addtional information

Finally, it is important to return your dosimeter each month or quarter for timely processing by Landauer. Environmental Health & Safety will charge your department for late or unreturned dosimeters. If you have additional questions, call EHS at 434-982-4911 or the UVA Dosimetrist at 434-243-3010.

Required Radiation Safety Training for Issuance of Radiation Dosimeter

Applicants with NO Previous Radiation Safety Training

Individuals who are issued dosimeters by EHS must first complete the appropriate online Radiation Safety Guide Lecture.

Applicants with Previous Radiation Safety Training

If you have already completed one of the following radiation safety training courses below and have documentation of such, you do not need to complete either of the above mentioned Radiation Safety Guide Lectures. Please document the course name and date of completion on the Dosimeter Application Log-in. The UVA Research Compliance Database will be used to verify documentation of training completed by dosimeter applicants.

Special Materials Handling Facility
515 Edgemont Road
P.O. Box 400322
Charlottesville, VA 22904-4322
PHONE 434.982.4911
FAX 434.982.4915
One Morton Drive
Suite 320
P.O. Box 400333
Charlottesville, VA 22904-4333
FAX 434.243.1735
© 2019 By The Rector And Visitors Of The University Of Virginia