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January is National Radon Action Month

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January 6, 2012

Radon Action Month

January is National Radon Action Month and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has reached out to the AARC to help get the word out to people who may be at risk of contracting lung cancer from this naturally occurring gas.

Here are some quick facts about radon from the EPA that you can share with your patients and their families:

  • Radon is a radioactive gas released from the earth’s natural decay of uranium in rock, soil, and water. The gas can accumulate to dangerous levels inside homes, schools, and other buildings. Since most people spend about 90% of their time inside, homes and buildings with high radon levels pose a serious risk to health.
  • Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer and the leading cause of lung cancer in nonsmokers. About 21,000 deaths every year are attributed to lung cancer caused by radon.
  • The EPA and Surgeon General recommend all homes be tested for radon because radon exists in all areas of the country. The EPA offers detailed information on radon testing.
  • When radon levels reach 4 picoCuries per liter of air or above, the EPA recommends taking measures to reduce the radon levels. A consumer’s guide to radon reduction is available.

The EPA has a wealth of additional information on radon on its radon website as well, so check it out and then let your patients know about it too.

If you’d like to plan an educational event during January, visit the National Radon Action Month page and click on “Learn More” in the “Partners” section for some great ideas on getting involved.