Tort reform could cut cancer rates

April 25, 2011

What Dr. Sandeep Rao did not mention in his op-ed ("Risk of radiation," April 25) is that American doctors order twice the radiation-intense imaging of the next industrialized nation per capita and that imaging causes 2 percent of all cancer. If we had tort limits like public health services, halving imaging would immediately prevent 1 percent of all cancer. Don't expect insurers to be thrilled about paying for a more expensive, radiation-free MRI in place of every CT. Adequate reimbursement of primary care would give physicians time to explain the risks and benefits of imaging to their patients.

Theodore Carl Houk

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