Radon and Cancer


Many Statewide Cancer Efforts Ignore Radon, CDC Finds Fewer than half of statewide cancer control programs address the problem of radon exposure, even though the odorless gas is believed to be the second-leading cause of lung cancer, according to an article published by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). The CDC administers the National Comprehensive Cancer Control Program, which aims to set up networks at the state level so that physicians, medical groups, cancer patients, cancer survivors and interested individuals can share information on how to fight cancer. Antonio Neri, M.D., from the CDC in Atlanta, and colleagues reviewed the cancer plans created from 2005 to 2011 to evaluate their radon-related activities. The study found that only 42 percent of the plans reviewed had radon-specific terminology. “Although several states have radon-specific policies, approximately half of cancer coalitions may not be aware of radon as a public health issue,” Neri and his co-authors wrote. “Comprehensive Cancer Control-developed cancer coalitions and plans should prioritize tobacco control to address lung cancer, but should also consider addressing radon through partnership with existing radon control programs.” The researchers found that of the 27 plans that mentioned radon, improving public awareness of radon risk was included in all of them. Also included were home testing (21), supporting radon policy activities (13), and remediation (11). Radon-specific laws are present in 30 states, but 21 of those are only related to radon professional licensure, not requirements for home testing. “Research to identify which radon interventions and methods of implementation have the greatest effect in particular populations would greatly benefit programs working to address radon efficiently and comprehensively,” the study concluded. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recommends that every American home be tested for radon. The study appeared in the Aug. 8 issue of the CDC journal Preventing Chronic Disease. The article can be found at http://www.cdc.gov/pcd/issues/2013/12_0337.htm – See more at: http://ieconnections.com/many-statewide-cancer-efforts-ignore-radon-cdc-finds-p244-90.htm?sthash.uOFHaC9p.mjjo&goback=%2Egde_164261_member_266466955#%21

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