Terms of Reference

Overall strategy

A group of experts with considerable experience in the follow-up of the health consequences of the Chernobyl accident has been assembled (Expert group) to conduct this study. The group includes European experts, from within and outside the three most affected states, with expertise in the following areas: epidemiology, clinical practice, pathology, mechanisms of cancer, dosimetry, radiobiology, risk assessment, genetics and public health.

A number of additional experts both within and outside Europe have agreed to offer advice as needed and may attend the meetings of the Expert Group as observers. This will ensure harmonization with other existing or planned activities around the world and input from other experts with considerable experience in this area.
The expert group will identify the specific health outcomes to be considered, which may include:

  • Solid cancers and leukaemia
  • Thyroid disease, including treatment and follow-up
  • Non-cancer effects, including birth defects, cataracts and cardiovascular diseases
  • Non-targeted effects
  • Heritable, including non-Mendelian, effects
  • The long term effects on the survivors of Acute Radiation Syndrome (ARS)
  • Health care policy and planning implications, including international health care collaboration

The expert group will meet to discuss both current priorities and longer-term needs for further research. Position papers on these issues will be drafted and discussed.
To ensure that certain groups will put their views, a number of organisations have been designated as “stakeholders” (Stakeholders), including governments and NGOs, and asked to nominate one person who will provide input.

The ARCH group recognises that it is very important that other organisations and members of the public should also be able to comment and put forward their views. All papers made available to the designated “stakeholders” will therefore at the same time be made available for comments on the public website. Because of the nature of the subject, many responses are expected, and while each submission will be acknowledged it will not unfortunately be possible to reply to each individually. All will be read and will be taken into account before the final report is written.
Public summaries of the position papers will be posted on this site.