Seven iodine stores guarantee emergency care

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Seven iodine stores guarantee care in an emergency

Many people are afraid that an iodine medication will not be available in Germany in the event of a nuclear accident. Since the dramatic events in Japan, iodine supplements have been sold out in many pharmacies in Germany. Should German citizens buy iodine as a precautionary measure, or are enough medicines available in the event of a reactor accident?

Sufficient iodine tablets are available
If a reactor accident actually occurs in Germany, there are enough high-dose iodine tablets available for the population. The Federal Office for the Environment and Radiation Protection refers to this in a new press release. In addition, the agents that are commercially available in pharmacies are not designed for prophylactic use to protect against radioactive iodine-131. The actual iodine drugs are high-dose, with agents from the pharmacy, consumers would have to consume hundreds of times at a time in order to achieve a preventive protective effect. Accordingly, the supplements from the pharmacy are ineffective in this regard.

Central warehouse controls emergency care There are a total of seven central warehouses for iodine tablets in Germany. Three of these federal camps are located in Bavaria. For example, a total of 9 million iodine tablets are stored in the Roding warehouse in Lower Bavaria. If a serious reactor accident actually occurs in Germany, the central warehouses will manage the emergency supply for the population.

Iodine does not protect against radiation sickness Many people believe that iodine protects against radioactive radiation. The general practitioner Dr. med. Frank Steller told "Heilpraxisnet": "High-dose iodine tablets only provide preventive protection against radioactive iodine-131. It prevents the particles from being stored in the thyroid gland. ”Contamination can only be prevented if the product has been taken in advance, the doctor added. I strongly advise against taking the current dose, there are serious health risks. Iodine does not protect against all other radiation diseases. The World Health Organization WHO currently does not assume any real danger to the rest of the world. However, the situation for the Pacific region and for the eastern part of Russia could become critical. Due to the large distance to Japan, there is currently no danger for people in Europe or Germany, according to the Federal Office for Radiation Protection.

Iodine stores are a relic from times past
The iodine warehouse in Roding is located under a school in an underground complex. In this complex there is also an emergency clinic for emergencies if medical care is no longer guaranteed by regular hospitals. The camps are a relic from the Cold War, when East and West were still irreconcilable. At that time, the federal government set up the centers to be equipped for a military-initiated nuclear war.

The central warehouse has a relative humidity of 60 percent. The optimal storage of the tablets is guaranteed by a room temperature of 10 to 16 degrees Celsius. The German Red Cross (DRK) is responsible for administration and distribution. The employees are responsible for the adequate storage and for the control of the stocks. In the event of an emergency, the distribution is controlled by the THW Technical Relief Agency, the red cross and by authorities. An employee of the central warehouse told the Bavarian radio: "There is a precise distribution mode, how many tablets should be delivered in the individual regions in the case of individual incidents in the nuclear power plants." A wide variety of organizations are then responsible for the distribution is therefore not necessary. (sb)

Also read:
How dangerous is radioactive radiation?
Iodine tablets inappropriate in Germany
Health: late effects from radioactive radiation
What do meltdown or super meltdown mean?
Radioactive radiation: consequences for health

Image: Birgit H. /

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