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AAPM Recognizes First International Day of Medical Physics on November 7, 2013

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

More Information:
Jason Socrates Bardi
+1 240-535-4954
jbardi@aip.org
@jasonbardi

WASHINGTON D.C. Nov. 7, 2013 -- The American Association of Physicists in Medicine (AAPM) joins with the International Organization for Medical Physics (IOMP) and the IOMP's 80 global chapters on November 7, 2013 to recognize the inaugural International Day of Medical Physics.

The celebration recognizes the critical role medical physicists play in providing quality health care for millions of people around the world every day and ensuring the safety and efficacy of radiation, which is used routinely to diagnose and treat diseases that range from head injuries to cancer.

"Anywhere a child who was in an accident gets scanned for broken bones and other potentially life-threatening trauma, any time a woman is given a routine screening exam to detect breast tumors and every time a cancer patient receives lifesaving radiation therapy, medical physicists are there," said AAPM President John D. Hazle, PhD, the Bernard W. Biedenharn Chair in Cancer Research at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. "This day is an important opportunity to reflect on the important work medical physicists do in hospitals and communities worldwide, and to highlight the unique and diverse set of skills they bring to patient care, biomedical research and education."

Many medical physicists have advanced clinical training and serve on multi-disciplinary teams overseeing the diagnosis and treatment of patients, Hazle said. They help safeguard the health of millions of people undergoing medical imaging or radiation therapy procedures every year by minimizing the associated risks and maximizing the benefits through quality improvement of both disciplines. Many medical physicists also work as researchers and teachers, helping to develop safer new tools to extend people's lives, technologies for earlier detection of disease and by training the next generation of health professionals.

This year's International Day of Medical Physics theme is "Radiation Exposure from Medical Procedures: Ask the Medical Physicist!" November 7 was selected in tribute to the legacy of two-time Nobel laureate Marie Sklodowska-Curie, known for her pioneering research on radioactivity, who was born in Poland on this day in 1867.

FOR MORE INFORMATION

- About Medical Physics in general, see this Web site from AAPM:
http://aapm.org/publicgeneral/default.asp

- About the International Day of Medical Physics, see this Web site from IOMP:
http://www.iomp.org/?q=content/international-day-medical-physics

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ABOUT AAPM

The AAPM is a scientific and professional organization, founded in 1958, composed of more than 7,500 scientists whose clinical practice is dedicated to ensuring accuracy, safety and quality in the use of radiation in medical procedures such as medical imaging and radiation therapy. The responsibility of the medical physicist is to assure that the radiation prescribed in imaging and radiation therapy is delivered accurately and safely, and one of the primary goals of AAPM is the identification and implementation of improvements in patient safety. See: http://www.aapm.org

This press release was prepared and distributed by the American Institute of Physics (AIP).