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Open AccessArticle

Radon Levels in Indoor Environments of the University Hospital in Bari-Apulia Region Southern Italy

1
Interdisciplinary Department of Medicine, Section of Occupational Medicine, University of Bari Aldo Moro Medical School, 70124 Bari, Italy
2
Regional University Hospital Policlinico—Prevention and Protection Service/Health Physics—A.O.U. Consortium Policlinico di Bari, 7014 Bari, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(4), 694; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15040694
Received: 14 February 2018 / Revised: 3 April 2018 / Accepted: 3 April 2018 / Published: 7 April 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Geochemistry and Human Health)
Since 1988, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has classified radon among the compounds for which there is scientific evidence of carcinogenicity for humans (group 1). The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends a reference radon level between 100 and 300 Bq/m3 for homes. The objective of this study is to measure the radon concentrations in 401 workplaces, different from the patient rooms, in 28 different buildings of the university hospital in Bari (Apulia region, Southern Italy) to evaluate the exposure of health care workers. Radon environmental sampling is performed over two consecutive six-month periods via the use of passive dosimeters of the CR-39 type. We find an average annual radon concentration expressed as median value of 48.0 Bq/m3 (range 6.5–388.0 Bq/m3) with a significant difference between the two six-month periods (median value: February/July 41.0 Bq/m3 vs. August/January 55.0 Bq/m3). An average concentration of radon lower than the WHO reference level (100 Bq/m3) is detected in 76.1% of monitored environments, while higher than 300 Bq/m3 only in the 0.9%. Most workplaces report radon concentrations within the WHO reference level, therefore, the risk to workers’ health deriving from occupational exposure to radon can be considered to be low. Nevertheless, the goal is to achieve near-zero exposures to protect workers’ health. View Full-Text
Keywords: radon; university hospital; exposure; health care workers radon; university hospital; exposure; health care workers
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MDPI and ACS Style

Vimercati, L.; Fucilli, F.; Cavone, D.; De Maria, L.; Birtolo, F.; Ferri, G.M.; Soleo, L.; Lovreglio, P. Radon Levels in Indoor Environments of the University Hospital in Bari-Apulia Region Southern Italy. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15, 694.

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