Medical students' knowledge on the use of ionising radiation during medical imaging procedures in Zambia
Purpose: This study aimed to explore and describe the medical students' knowledge on the use of ionising radiation and its harmful effects during diagnostic imaging procedures in Zambia.
Methods: A quantitative cross-sectional design was employed. A census survey of all final year medical students from the University of Zambia (UNZA) was conducted. Data was collected using a structured questionnaire and analysed using STATA version 13 and Graph Pad Prism 5.
Result: The overall results revealed that medical students had inadequate knowledge of the use of ionising radiation. Furthermore, most of the students revealed that the medical school curriculum was inadequate in equipping them with the necessary knowledge required for them to request diagnostic medical imaging procedures utilizing ionizing radiation.
Discussion: The results implied that the knowledge levels of the medical students were insufficient in the use and prescription of imaging procedures. It is suggested that the UNZAmedical school curriculum is critically scrutinized and a radiation protection course is included. The inclusion would provide the medical students with the necessary knowledge about ionising radiation in order to prevent unnecessary referrals for diagnostic medical imaging procedures.
Keywords: Ionising radiation, Knowledge, Medical students, Radiation protection