WHO Updates Medicines For Nuclear and Radioactive Emergencies

For the first time since 2007, the World Health Organization (WHO) revised its list of medications and treatments recommended to treat radiological and nuclear crises on Friday.

The updated list, which advises countries on how to prepare for nuclear and radiological catastrophes and crises, is part of a new WHO report that takes into account data and research for associated medical treatment that has arisen in the previous decade.

The WHO’s Department of Public Health and Environment Director, Maria Neira, underlined the necessity of nations and governments maintaining a ready supply of lifesaving medications to decrease risks and treat radiation damage.

She noted that during a radiation emergency, individuals may be exposed to radioactivity at levels ranging from inconsequential to lethal and governments must make treatments available to those in need as soon as possible.

As recommended by the WHO, a typical radiation emergency reserve should comprise stable iodine to decrease thyroid exposure to radioactive iodine, chelating agents to remove radioactive cesium from the body, which can occur during nuclear fission, and cytokines to protect bone marrow.

Several more are included on the list that can cure an infection, diarrhea, vomiting, and other causes of body illness and suffering from radiation exposure. It also describes the other medicines and chemicals, as well as how to maintain and store them and how to utilize pharmaceuticals for emergency treatment.