Lessons learned from the study of immigrants to Israel from areas of Russia, Belarus, and Ukraine contaminated by the Chernobyl accident Academic Article uri icon


  • During the past 6 years, immigration to Israel of 700,000 persons from the former Soviet Union (FSU) included about 140,000 from radiocontaminated regions of Belarus, Ukraine, and Russia near Chernobyl. In Beer Sheva, a major center for immigrant absorption in Israel, a primary objective was to evaluate their health status and to refer them for care. 137Cs levels in 1228 men, women, and children were measured with a portable whole-body counter. Whole-body counts showed clear correlation with the degree of 137Cs ground contamination in previous regions of residence. The population could thus be sub-divided according to degree of exposure, based on previous regions of residence. The thyroid status of 300 local immigrant children was evaluated because of the increased risk of childhood thyroid cancer in the regions from which they came. This group was subdivided into comparative groups of children who came from less and more contaminated areas according to the International Atomic Energy Agency soil 137Cs co...

publication date

  • January 1, 1997