Concord, NH – The New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services (DES) announced today that analysis conducted in response to recent inquiries, revealed no unusually high cancer incidence in Claremont for the 1987-2001 period. The DES and the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) conducted a review of cancer incidence in the city of Claremont and calculated rates for 24 major cancer types taking into account the age and gender composition of the population. None of the 24 major cancer types for Claremont exhibited statistically significant elevations compared with the State as a whole.
Analysis of Claremont cancer trends over time revealed an improvement in overall cancer compared to the state from 1987-1991 to 1997-2001. Breast cancer incidence was significantly lower for Claremont than for the state in the five-year period 1997-2001. No other site-specific cancers differed significantly from those of the state.
Cancer incidence data for 1987-2001 were provided by the NH State Cancer Registry. Data were analyzed with the Standardized Incidence Ratio (SIR) technique, which is used to investigate disease incidence in small areas, and is the first step in New Hampshire's disease cluster investigation protocol. The purpose of the SIR is to identify unusually high (or low) disease rates in an area and determine whether or not they are amenable to public health intervention.
DES and DHHS also plan to evaluate other available non-cancer health in the Claremont area over the coming months; and assess the need of conducting additional environmental monitoring.
A copy of the analysis is available on the DES Web site. For more information about the analysis, please contact John P. Colby, Jr., Ph.D., Environmental Epidemiologist for the DES Environmental Health Program at (603) 271-4509.