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Press Release   
FEBRUARY 1st, 2010
TIM O’CONNOR 561-671-4013
SUSAN SMITH 850-245-4111

    WEST PALM BEACH, FL – The on-going study of various cancers among Acreage residents of Palm Beach County has recalculated population numbers from 2000-2007. The findings, as reviewed by the Federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Florida Department of Health (DOH) Central Office, and the DOH Palm Beach County Health Department continue to show elevated levels of brain and central nervous system cancers especially among females 0-19 years of age.

    The original population calculation used 2000 census figures, which showed a population in the Acreage of about 29,000 residents. With on-going population growth throughout the county and state, the accuracy of these population numbers is critical especially when calculating incidence rates of cancers. The new study utilized three additional independent sources of population to calculate growth in the area through 2007. These new data sources resulted in population estimates of 31,908, 38,851 and 39,809. In each case, the population was broken into overall age groups, and by sex.

    “We suspected that pediatric brain and central nervous system cancers among children were higher than would normally be seen in an area like the Acreage.” said Senior Environmental Epidemiologist Sharon M. Watkins, Ph.D. “But to be accurate, we needed to be more confident with how much the population increased from 2000 to 2007.”

    The DOH Palm Beach County Health Department has concluded the interviews with families affected by various pediatric brain and central nervous system cancers as part of the ongoing study.

    The pediatric cases observed were broken into three year periods and reviewed by age, and sex. From 2005 to 2007 there were three cases among females, and based on population, the expected number of cases would have been zero to one (statistically 0.5 to 0.6). These numbers combine to create a statistical incidence ratio greater than 4.0 and are considered significantly elevated.

    “This latest finding confirms that our interviews have been directed correctly. These families and their children have endured a great deal and we will continue to monitor cases,” said Palm Beach County Health Department Director Dr. Alina Alonso.

    The Acreage SIR Recalculation Population Estimate Methods and Results are posted at

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 Florida Dept. of Health (DOH) - - opens a new window - - opens a new window  Automated Community Connection to Economic Self-Sufficiency    Welcome to the Florida Community Health Assessment Resource Tool Set (CHARTS).  It is our hope that you will find Florida CHARTS informative and easy to use. This site includes such health statistics as births, deaths, disease morbidity, population and behavioral risk factors. - opens a new window Jobs within the State of Florida - State Job Search - opens a new window

Florida Health - opens a new window   Agency for Health Care Administration - opens a new window - opens in new window The Health Care District has launched a new program called Vitahealth.  This is a low cost policy for residents of Palm Beach County who have no health insurance coverage or have lost their coverage for over 6 months.  Details are available by calling 866-930-0035 or on the web at www.vitahealth.orgTen-year plan to end homelessness in Palm Beach County - opens a new window

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