Residential Household Knowledge and Receipt of Potassium Iodide Within the 10-Mile Emergency Planning Zone of a Nuclear Power Plant in North Carolina, 2010

August 2013 (VOL. 31, NO. 2)

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There has been renewed interest in radiological preparedness and countermeasures for nuclear power plant (NPP) emergencies in the United States as a result of the Fukushima Daiichi accident in March 2011. One such countermeasure, potassium iodide (KI), was voluntarily pre-distributed to households in a central North Carolina community living within the 10-mile Emergency Planning Zone (EPZ) of a NPP in 2010. The goal of this study was to evaluate household KI coverage among EPZ residents following this pre-distribution campaign, as well as to assess knowledge and beliefs about KI. A guided interview and self-administered questionnaire was administered to a random sample of 177 EPZ households. Findings indicate four months post-distribution that this program resulted in low household KI coverage rates (< 5%) and low KI knowledge levels. Results demonstrate the need for improved KI pre-distribution and education strategies targeting households within the designated 10-mile EPZ.