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Contamination event

City: FORT WORTH   State: TX

The following information was received via e-mail:

"On December 2, 2018, the Agency [Texas Department of State Health Services]
was notified by the licensee's radiation safety officer (RSO) that they had admitted a patient
at 2210 hours [CST] on December 1, 2018, complaining about a sickness.

At 0000 hours on December 2, 2018,
the patient gave the treatment nurse a piece of paper from a hospital in Houston, Texas,
stating this individual had received a thyroid treatment with iodine-131 on November 29, 2018.

[ so the patient waited 2 hrs before revealing radiation treatment. ]
[ The patient also appears to have spent 3 days possibly contaminating other locations. ]

At this time the patient was moved to an appropriate room.
At this point the patient had been in four different rooms.

The four rooms were surveyed for contamination.

No contamination was found in the first room surveyed.
[ ER walk-in intake waiting? ]

In the second room, only paperwork was found to be contaminated and the paperwork was disposed of.
[ Treatment room? Paperwork from the patient? ]

The third room was a bathroom.
Seven tiles in the bathroom were found to be contaminated and were removed.

The fourth room was also a bathroom. In this room, the toilet was found to be contaminated.

The RSO stated the first survey performed with a 14C rate meter [ a Carbon 14 meter? ]
with a pancake GM probe read greater than 20 millirem per hour
(mR/hr) (maximum reading on the instrument, i.e. pegged high).

A second survey performed with a second instrument indicated a dose rate of 60 mR/hr (on scale reading).
[ Notice there's no mention of the type of instrument used in the second survey. ]

The RSO was asked if the reading was in mR/hr or microrem per hour.
The RSO confirmed the reading was 60 mR/hr at one foot from the top of the bowl.
The RSO stated the room has been isolated and posted.
The RSO stated all contaminated laundry had been removed from the areas and placed in the appropriate storage location.
The RSO stated the second bathroom would be isolated for an extended period of time.
The RSO had been at the facility since 0000 hours so he was headed home for rest.
The RSO stated he would provide additional information on Monday December 3, 2018.
Additional information will be provided as it is received in accordance with SA-300."

Texas Incident: 9641


The following update was received from the State of Texas via e-mail:

"The licensee's RSO informed the Agency that during its follow-up survey of the bathroom in which they had removed contaminated
floor tiles, a single spot was found with readings of 5 mR/hr on the toilet near its water supply line.

Therefore, access to this bathroom will also remain restricted.
The patient was released from the emergency room late in the day on 12/02/2018.

More information will be provided as it is received in accordance with SA-300."

Notified R4DO (Gaddy) and NMSS Event Notification Group (by email).

[ I think the patient was a male due to the fact that contamination was found on floor tiles and near the water supply line. ]
A guy standing to urinate missed the bowl, in at least two restrooms. But I may be wrong, the report appears to have
specifically been worded to not identify the patients gender.


[ The report also doesn't specify what the illness was or any diagnoses ( understandable, patient confidentiality ) ]

I find it strange that the patient didn't mention the rad treatment at ER triage intake,
 maybe this is a question that ER intake should ask all future patients.

[ I wonder if the staff at the hospital in Houston gave any guidance to the patient on procedures to follow due the rad treatment. ]
[ If they didn't that would seem negligent on their part, if they did and the patient ignored those instructions, then I would
think the patient is negligent, maybe even criminally negligent.

[ Disturbing that it was a Childrens Medical Center. ]

[ Nuclear - contaminating the planet, one uncontaminated square meter at a time. ]

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