Diagnosis: Cognitive Dissonance. Why isn’t the medical community counseling patients about radon?

As a recent medical journal article said, “Counseling around unhealthy or risky behaviors is an important communication skill that should be part of health care visits.” That is why radon professionals believe that doctors should be talking to their patients about the dangers of radon exposure. Yet we know that physician-patient discussions about radon are not routine. In fact, they are rare. In this blog, I want to explore this apparent contradiction, which looks like a case of cognitive dissonance. In later blogs, we will try to explain the reasons for this situation, and also look at what doctors could or should be telling patients about radon. Perhaps most importantly, I hope we can discuss how to work effectively with the medical community and what physicians should be saying about radon.

To set the stage, let’s start with six or seven simple facts.