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Year : 2016  |  Volume : 18  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 91-97

Medical support to a disabled nuclear platform at sea

Base Medical Officer, INS Virbahu (Classified Spi Marine Medicine & Spi Physiology), Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh, India

Correspondence Address:
Vishal Kansal
Base Medical Officer, INS Virbahu (Classified Spi Marine Medicine & Spi Physiology), Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0975-3605.202992

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Indian Navy has recently joined the select band of countries that are operating nuclear powered platforms. Despite the fact, that the present day nuclear technology is quite advanced and safe; accidents on board can still happen. An accident on board a Nuclear Platform at sea can result in ‘Radiation Exposure and Contamination’ to the crew members; which can prove catastrophic. Management of casualties on board a Nuclear platform at sea presents a formidable challenge. The distressed platform being at sea will also bring in many other operational variables like distance from shore, geographical location, weather conditions, availability of rescue assets and trained manpower etc. Consequently, there is a necessity to have a well defined ‘Medical Contingency Plan’ to deal with any such eventuality happening at sea. The successful execution of the contingency plan will depend upon close coordination among diverse authorities like local Service Hospital, Command Medical & Operational Authorities, Naval Dockyard, Radiation Safety Organisations and the Rescue/Hospital Ship crew. The need is to have a holistic review of our existing medical set up and integrate new equipment, training methodologies, operating procedures to have a credible response capability.

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