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ATSDR and MDPH to Host Public Meeting about Environmental Health Activities in Acton, MA


For Immediate Release: August 19, 2008

ATLANTA—The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) will hold a joint public meeting for members of the community to present the findings of a recently completed public health assessment (PHA) – public comment version and evaluation of cancer incidence at the W.R. Grace & Company, Inc. site in Acton, Middlesex County, Massachusetts. The public meeting will take place:

Tuesday, August 26, 2008
6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Acton-Boxborough Regional High School
39 Charter Road
Acton, MA

A public health assessment is a scientific review of available information about hazardous substances at a site. The PHA evaluates whether human exposures to these substances are likely to occur (or have occurred already) and whether such exposure is likely to harm persons at or near the site.

ATSDR at the request of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was asked to evaluate data on groundwater, soil, sediment, and surface water at the W.R. Grace site in Acton, MA. ATSDR visited the area and conducted a public availability session to gather community concerns and to discuss ATSDR’s role in the process. Based on the community concerns regarding cancer, the MDPH conducted an evaluation of cancer incidence in the area.

Members of the community will have an opportunity to ask questions and speak with ATSDR and MDPH scientists on a one-on-one basis regarding the findings. For more information about the about the upcoming meeting members of the community may contact:

Robert Knowles, Lead Health Assessor
1-800- CDC-INFO (1-800-232-4636) or 770-488-3659

Loretta Asbury, Senior Health Communications Specialist
1-800-CDC-INFO (1-800-232-4636) or 770-488-0718

William Sweet, ATSDR Senior Regional Representative, Region 1

ATSDR, a federal public health agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, evaluates the human health effects of exposure to hazardous substances.


Members of the news media can request an interview by calling the NCEH/ATSDR Office of Communication at 770-488-0700.

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Updated August 21, 2008
For more information, contact ATSDR at:
770-488-0700 or e-mail (news media)

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