Study Being Conducted in The Acreage Has Been Canceled. A news conference slated for today to discuss the results of a cancer cluster study being conducted in a Florida community, The Acreage, has been canceled. According to The Palm Beach Post, release of the first phase of the study has been delayed so investigators can review its findings further.
As we’ve reported previously, residents of The Acreage have been concerned about a cancer cluster since several children living in close proximity to each other were diagnosed with brain tumors. In an earlier report, one resident told the Post that she knew of 70 reports of such tumors or suspected tumors diagnosed in Acreage residents in the past 15 years, 14 of which were in children.
People living in the area are concerned that a nearby Pratt & Whitney jet engine plant and/or citrus groves in the area, which used potentially dangerous pesticides for decades may have tainted well water. There were also concerns about soil contamination.
Florida Department of Health Has Been Gathering Information
Because of residents’ concerns, the Florida Department of Health has been gathering basic information on people in the area who have had brain cancer. Results of the first phase of the investigation were supposed to be released today. If the study finds either “elevated levels” of cancer in the community, or determines that a cluster exists, the inquiry will continue and would eventually target possible environmental causes.
While that first phase is completed, the Post says the report is still be reviewed by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), state environmental professionals and epidemiologists, as well as county health personnel. So today’s news conference has been canceled.
A spokesperson for the Palm Beach County Health Department told the Post that it is hoped that county would be able to report back to The Acreage residents by the end of this month, as was originally promised. But it is not known if the review of the report will be done by then.