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Press Release

Public Meeting on Pediatric Test Results Related to Contaminant in Pease Water System to Be Held September 9th
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Public Information Office
(603) 271-9388

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Division of Public Health Services
Publish Date:
August 26, 2015

Concord, NH – The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and the Haven Well Community Advisory Board (CAB) will hold a public meeting on September 9th to discuss pediatric results of the blood testing program related to exposure to perfluorochemicals (PFCs) at the Pease Tradeport. The meeting will include a presentation with a summary of the preliminary results for all children 11 years of age and younger who have been tested to date. This presentation will provide parents/guardians with additional context to help them understand individual results. The meeting will also provide an opportunity for members of the public to ask questions about the results.

The meeting will be held Wednesday, September 9th at 6:00 pm at the NH Department of Environmental Services Regional Office, 222 International Drive, Suite 175, Portsmouth, NH, 03801.

The unregulated contaminant perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS) was detected in one of the wells of the water system at the Pease Tradeport in May 2014 at a level that exceeded the “provisional health advisory” set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The affected well was immediately shut down by the City of Portsmouth and has remained offline since.

“We understand that finding levels of these chemicals in a person’s blood, especially in children, may cause concern, no matter what the amount,” said Dr. Benjamin Chan, NH State Epidemiologist. “The limited scientific knowledge about how PFCs affect a person can also create worry and uncertainty. We are holding this meeting with the CAB to try and help parents or guardians of young children understand what their child’s levels mean and to address any questions or concerns they have.”

DHHS has resumed the testing program for people who consumed the contaminated water and who wish to have their blood tested. Testing is available until October 16th, at which time all interested participants must have had their blood drawn. This will be the final round of testing in order to allow DHHS to present the community with a final summary report of the entire PFC Testing Program. Please call the DHHS Public Inquiry line Monday-Friday 8:00 am-4:00 pm at 603-271-9461 to sign up for testing or if you have any questions.

For more information about the Pease Superfund site and water monitoring visit the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services (DES) website at http://des.nh.gov/organization/divisions/waste/hwrb/fss/superfund/summaries/documents/pease.pdf Adobe Acrobat Reader Symbol. To learn more about the water system at the Pease Tradeport, visit the City of Portsmouth website at http://www.cityofportsmouth.com/publicworks/phwn.html. To read more about the investigation and the blood testing program, visit the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services at http://www.dhhs.nh.gov/dphs/investigation-pease.htm. To find out about the Pease testing program, please call the DHHS Emergency Services Unit at 603-271-9461.

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New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services
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