Low-Dose Radiation Research Act of 2014

Floor Speech

Date: Nov. 17, 2014
Location: Washington, DC

Mr. BROUN of Georgia. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.

I rise here today to urge my colleagues to support H.R. 5544, the Low-Dose Radiation Research Act of 2014.

Humans are exposed on a daily basis to much natural background radiation, and some get additional low-dose exposure from medical procedures or from industrial radiation sources; yet sufficient data is not available for experts to definitively conclude whether there are health risks associated with low-dose radiation.

This lack of understanding prevents regulatory agencies from setting more precise radiation dose limits, as well as it impairs authorities' decisionmaking capabilities to address potential radiological events and advise patients for medically-based radiation exposures, all of which pose an unnecessary burden on society.

As a medical doctor, as a family doctor, and a true fiscal conservative, I recognize that this major gap in understanding is detrimental to the health and well-being of Americans and will additionally contribute to unnecessary economic burdens if we do not deal with it immediately.

This legislation seeks to address the limited understanding of potential health risks associated with low-dose radiation by leveraging the Nation's current expertise in low-dose radiation while proposing a long-term strategy to address the current gaps of knowledge in this area.

This legislation will be carried out using funds otherwise already appropriated by law and ensure that the Department of Energy is following congressional direction to focus its work on issues of long-term importance.

Passage of this legislation will help resolve what we do not know in the field of low-dose radiation for the betterment of medicine, for emergency response planning, and for industrial safety, not to speak about helping patients and Americans know what this all entails. This will show that we do not take for granted the livelihood of our fellow Americans.

This bill is a commonsense win, and I hope that all of my colleagues on both sides of the aisle will join me in supporting this legislation.

I reserve the balance of my time.