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Missouri Uses Videos, Art and Instruction to Advise Residents about Radon

By Margaret Henderson

Based on EPA data, Missouri has 11 counties that are expected to exceed the 4pCi/L indoor air concentration, the EPA recommended action level. Another 97 counties are expected to have between 2 and 4 pCi/L. The remaining seven counties are expected to have less than 2pCi/L.

With the majority of counties having possible radon levels exceeding action levels, the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services provides radon information to the public through its website featuring videos, art and instructions.

The website has provided detailed information and an opportunity for free radon test kits for MIssouri residents. See https://health.mo.gov/living/environment/radon/testkit.php.
Videos on the website, both in English and Spanish, give instruction. A selection of written documents provide:

  • Radon Testing Instructions
  • Radon Risk Charts

The Utah Experience: Facebook is an inexpensive, educational, and effective way to promote radon awareness videos

by Margaret Henderson

Source: Poster - A Cost-Effective Approach: Using Social Media to Promote a Cancer Prevention Video, by Donna Branson, BA; Jeff Yancey, PhD, CHES; Garrett Harding, BS; and Wallace Akerley, MD, of Huntsman Cancer Institute, University of Utah, Salt Lake City. The posted was awarded best poster designation at the International Cancer Education Conference in October 2015.

In January 2015, the Huntsman Cancer Institute Patient and Public Education Department collaborated with the Utah Cancer Control Program, Utah Department of Environmental Quality Radon Program and other organizations on a radon awareness campaign. Three primary media platforms were used:
• radio advertising;
• website banner advertising; and
• Facebook boosted posts.

West Virginia’s Radon Program Activities

Contributed by Jason Frame, B.S. R.T. (R), Program Chief

The West Virginia Radon Program focuses on public outreach and education on the potential negative health effects of radon gas exposure. This is accomplished through informational presentations, electronic and print media, free radon kit distribution, and organizational partnerships. The program also is mandated by state code §18-9E-3. Air quality in new schools to test new schools for radon upon initial construction and every five years afterward.

The program receives approximately 900 annual contacts by email, phone and in writing. These contacts range from citizens seeking help with radon detection and mitigation within their homes to radon professional seeking licensure to work in West Virginia.

Minnesota Department of Health Posts Possible Rules Governing Licensing of Radon

Minnesota Department of Health

This message is to inform you that a revised Request for Comments has been published in the State Register and is posted along with the revised Minnesota Licensing Act (statute) an updated draft of the Radon Licensing Rules on the MDH webpage here: http://www.health.state.mn.us/divs/eh/indoorair/radon/rulemaking/rulesindex.html

Interested persons or groups may submit comments or information on these possible rules in writing until further notice is published in the State Register that the Department intends to adopt or to withdraw the rules. The Department will not publish a notice of intent to adopt the rules until more than 60 days have elapsed from the date of this request for comments. The Department has convened an advisory committee to comment on the possible rules.

A copy of the State Register posting follows:

New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Certifies and Inspects

by Anita Kopera and Margaret Henderson

In 1986, a statute was passed to establish radon certification for persons working in New Jersey. Regulations were implemented in 1991 for radon testing and mitigation certification. Since that time, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Radon Section has operated a program for certification of radon professionals and businesses. The program certifies approximately 700 individuals and 32 businesses. The certification includes six categories:

Business Certification
1. Certified Radon Mitigation Business
2. Certified Radon Measurement Business

Professional Certification
1. Certified Radon Measurement Specialist
2. Certified Radon Measurement Technician
3. Certified Radon Mitigation Specialist
4. Certified Radon Mitigation Technician

Businesses interested in New Jersey certification should review the New Jersey

Radon Initiatives in “A Call to Action North Carolina Comprehensive Cancer Control Plan 2014-2020”

by Margaret Henderson

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, Radiation Protection Section, in partnership with the North Carolina Advisory Committee on Cancer Coordination and Control, has provided input regarding developing priority areas and implementation strategies for the North Carolina cancer plan.

Radon initiatives have been included in the plan, “A Call to Action North Carolina Comprehensive Cancer Control Plan 2014-2020,” with the goal of implementation during 2016.

Opportunity to Comment - Colorado's Proposed Low Income Radon Assistance Program Regulation

Source: Reprinted from Colorado Department of Health notification

The Radiation Program of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Enviornment is seeking comments on a proposed new regulation - Part 21 - necessary to implement the Colorado Low Income Radon Mitigation Assistance Program. The rule will help to provide financial assistance for the installation of radon mitigation systems in qualified low income owner occupied homes. The rule is being proposed as a result of recent legislation (House Bill HB 16-1141) put forth during the 2016 Colorado legislative session.

Please refer to the Part 21 website for further information:
https://www.colorado.gov/pacific/cdphe/rad-regs-stakeholder-processes

This new regulation will determine the process for a new monetary assistance program to fund radon mitigation systems in qualified owner-occupied low income homes.

Florida Radon Program Website Includes Facts for Medical Professionals

by Margaret Henderson

Through its website, the Radon Program in Florida has provided medical professionals with resources about radon and encourages physicians to inquire about radon levels in the homes of their patients. See http://www.floridahealth.gov/environmental-health/radon/Outreach/Physicians.html

The website notes that “some health care professionals and organizations have begun to include questions about the radon level in patients' homes on standardized patient history forms.”

Several links are provided for physicians to review documents from organizations including:

  • Radon: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians;
  • National Cancer Institute - Radon and Cancer;
  • American Cancer Society - Radon Information;
  • Health Physics Society - Perspective on Radon; and

Utah Legislature Appropriates $150,000 for Radon Awareness Campaign

By Margaret Henderson

During the 2016 General Session, the Utah State Legislature appropriated a budget of $150,000 for the Radon Awareness Campaign for Fiscal Year 2017. According to the COBI 2016, published on the legislature’s website, “This is a 500 percent increase from Fiscal Year 2016 revised estimated amounts from all sources. The total includes $150,000 from the General/Education Funds, an increase of 500 percent from revised Fiscal Year 2016 estimates.” The appropriation is made to the Departments of Health and Environmental Quality. (COBI contains unaudited data as presented to the Legislature by state agencies at the time of publication.)

Eleanor Divver, the department’s Radon Coordinator commented on the appropriation saying “Yes, we received a $150,000 legislative funding for an educational campaign. The money goes through Utah Department of Health. The thought process was because they run many cancer awareness programs.”

North Carolina Website Has New Look and Updated Information

by Margaret Henderson

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, Radiation Protection Section has a newly designed website, “Radon, a statewide concern, is the leading environmental cause of lung cancer.” http://www.ncradon.org/Home.html

The “Mitigation” tab provides videos on overview of mitigation practices, installation of systems in new homes and mitigation of homes with slab foundations. Although not required in North Carolina, the program recommends using a certified radon professional.

Financial assistance for mitigation is discussed in the tab for “Money.” The site gives information on the North Carolina Housing Finance Agency and Self Help Credit Union. These were discussed in depth in the March 23, 2015, blog post North Carolina Finds Answers for a Problem: How to Pay for Radon Mitigations
http://www.radonleaders.org/node/21095