Reese Center included in federal agencies upcoming chemical, health assessments

Reese Technology Center (Source: KCBD)
Reese Technology Center (Source: KCBD)
Updated: Feb. 22, 2019 at 10:37 AM CST
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LUBBOCK COUNTY, TX (KCBD) - Reese Technology Center is one of eight United States current and former military bases that will be evaluated by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry to study exposure to human-made chemicals.

The assessments are to start at an unspecified date this year and carry into 2020, according to a CDC news release. This assessment is a precursor to a multi-site health study that will look into the relationship between per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or human-made chemicals, and health outcomes.

These PFAS, as they are known in the professional world, have been commonly used in industry and consumer products since the ’50s, mainly in non-stick cookware, water repellent clothing, stain resistant fabrics, some cosmetics and products that resist grease, oil and water. Because some studies suggest the chemicals could affect growth, learning and behavior of infants and children, the two agencies would like to study them.

People within these communities will be selected at random and will have PFAS levels checked via blood and urine samples.

The eight sites that will be assessed are:

  • Berkeley County (WV) near Shepherd Field Air National Guard Base
  • El Paso County (CO) near Peterson Air Force Base
  • Fairbanks North Star Borough (AK) near Eielson Air Force Base
  • Hampden County (MA) near Barnes Air National Guard Base
  • Lubbock County (TX) near Reese Technology Center
  • Orange County (NY) near Stewart Air National Guard Base
  • New Castle County (DE) near New Castle Air National Guard Base
  • Spokane County (WA) near Fairchild Air Force Base

“The assessments will generate information about exposure to PFAS in affected communities and will extend beyond the communities identified, as the lessons learned can also be applied to communities facing similar PFAS drinking water exposures. This will serve as a foundation for future studies evaluating the impact of PFAS exposure on human health,” Patrick Breysse, director, CDC’s National Center for Environmental Health and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, said in the news release.

More information about PFAS exposure can be found here: Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) and Your Health

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