Reply to the Letter-to-the-editor written by J. J. Bevelacqua and S. M. J. Mortazavi on: “Radon survey in the kindergartens of three Visegrad countries (Hungary, Poland and Slovakia)” (DOI 10.1007/s10967-018-6374-3)
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Radiation protection is based on a conservative approach, which is still valid in Visegrad countries. It means that the motivation for radon monitoring in the kindergartens was based on a valid radiation protection for inhabitants. The aim of our paper was not to compare models describing the relation dose–effect.
It is still not clear and is still being discussed which of the models is correct for low doses. The idea that low doses are not harmful is controversial and there are papers confirming both approaches. The extensive research (lasting for decades) should be made to confirm credibly the effect of low doses. Investigations indicate that also LNT model probably should have a threshold, but in the radiation protection LNT model is still valid and used.
The main goal of the article was to study the radon levels in kindergartens in V4 countries in a view of the Directive (No. 2013/59/EURATOM). The authors did not intend to discuss the strengths and weaknesses of LNT and hormesis hypotheses. Another reason why LNT model was mentioned is that in EU countries the radon action plan was approved and member countries incorporated it in their legislation and lowered their reference levels for indoor radon from 400 to 300 Bq m−3.