The Michener Institute Joins Health Canada's National Biological Dosimetry Response Plan

    TORONTO, June 25 /CNW/ - The Michener Institute for Applied Health
Sciences is collaborating with Health Canada on the National Biological
Dosimetry Response Plan (NBDRP). As a collaborator to this response plan,
Michener's Genetics Technology department will become involved in the
screening of Canadians in the event of a large-scale radiological or nuclear
    Building on the expertise of cytogenetic analysis and sample processing
within the Genetics Technology program, Health Canada has identified a unique
opportunity at Michener. This partnership will help build the capacity of the
Genetics Technology Program and the advanced diploma students to apply the
principles, processes, and analysis strategies used in biological dosimetry
    "The collaboration with Health Canada will afford a number of
opportunities to Genetics Technology students to enhance their learning and
increase their capacity, while contributing to the common good," says Jennifer
O'Leary, Professor, Genetics Technology.
    In addition to the training and education of Genetics Technology
students, The Michener Institute's physical resources, including equipment and
space, will also be called upon during a large-scale emergency to enable the
processing of large numbers of blood samples for biological dosimetry
assessment. This will increase the throughput of assessing radiation exposure
in large-scale radiological or nuclear emergencies by increasing capacity.
Transfer of samples to The Michener Institute during an incident would help to
alleviate strain on the other NBDRP laboratories that may be overwhelmed, or
unavailable due to the scale of the emergency.
    "This unique alliance is an innovative example of how collective
resources can be leveraged to benefit the larger community in the event of a
large-scale disaster," explains Dr. Karim Bandali, Associate Vice President,
Business Development. "Michener students have the knowledge, skills and
competencies to be effective, efficient and accurate in a crisis."
    "The alliance provides The Michener Institute a great potential
opportunity to have direct impact on patient care in the unusual event of a
radiological emergency, in addition to providing an exciting and meaningful
learning experience for the students," states Suzanne Allaire, Chair,
Laboratory Medicine.
    With this collaboration in place, The Michener Institute becomes a centre
for emergency response in the NBDRP. "I am looking forward to the
collaboration between Health Canada and The Michener Institute. This
cooperation will be of great benefit to both organizations, while providing
invaluable support to the response to radiological emergencies in Canada,"
confirmed Robert Bradley, Director, Health Canada Consumer and Clinical
Radiation Protection Bureau.
    Future activities will include continued student training, a table top
exercise to assess the logistics of the arrival and processing of specimens at
The Michener Institute, and upgrading of equipment to meet the needs of this
testing. This collaboration has been made possible through funding from the
Chemical, Biological, Radiological- Nuclear and Explosive Research and
Technology Initiative.

    About The Michener Institute
    The Michener Institute for Applied Health Sciences is Canada's only
post-secondary institution devoted exclusively to applied health science
education. Since 1958, Michener has educated applied health professionals who
serve a vital role in the country's health care sector in such fields as
medical laboratory science, medical radiation sciences, respiratory therapy,
chiropody, diagnostic cytology, genetics technology, ultrasound and magnetic
resonance imaging (MRI).
    Interprofessionalism, patient-centred learning and simulation-enhanced
education are essentials of the Michener academic experience for over 5,000
full-time, part-time and continuing education students. The Michener Institute
is publicly funded by the Province of Ontario, through the Ministry of Health
and Long-Term Care and further enriched through partnerships with
universities, private sector companies and leading health care organizations.
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For further information:

For further information: about Michener, interview requests or media
tours please contact: Iliana Arapis, Senior Director, Communications & PR,
(416) 596-3120,; Katie Schrank, Communications Associate,
(416) 596-3101 ext. 3482,; Health Canada contact: Health
Canada Media Relations, (613) 957-2983

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