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New York City Seal Press Release

New York City Department of Health
and Mental Hygiene

Office of Communications
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Sandra Mullin/Greg Butler (DOHMH)
Business Hours (212) 788-5290
After Business Hours (212) 764-7667
CONTACT: Kathy Skipper/Jill Smith (ATSDR)
Business Hours (404) 498-0070
Tuesday, October 21, 2003
 

CITY HEALTH DEPARTMENT ISSUES ENROLLMENT INFORMATION FROM WORLD TRADE CENTER HEALTH REGISTRY

Report Provides Demographic Information on 6,313 People Who Enrolled During First Three-and-a-Half Weeks of Data Collection

NEW YORK CITY - October 21, 2003 - The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) issued a report today containing a demographic breakdown of people who enrolled in the World Trade Center Health Registry through September 30, 2003. The report contains demographic information by residence, age, gender, and exposure group for the 6,313 who enrolled in the World Trade Center Health Registry - i.e., people who completed the 30-minute telephone health survey - through September 30, 2003. To date, nearly 15,000 people have signed up to be interviewed for the World Trade Center Health Registry, and nearly 10,000 people have enrolled in the health registry by completing the telephone survey. The report, entitled Data Snapshot: Understanding the Health Impact of 9/11 is available online at www.wtcregistry.org.

"This report provides a snapshot of enrollment for the month of September, and is the first in a series of quarterly updates from the World Trade Center Health Registry," said New York City Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas R. Frieden. "Thus far, we have seen a broad geographic representation of enrollees across the five boroughs, the greater metropolitan area, and beyond. Much work, however, remains to be done. The more people that enroll, the more accurate and comprehensive the Registry's findings will be. If you were near the WTC site on September 11, 2001 or in the weeks and months that followed, it is important that you step forward and enroll. Call us at 311, 1-866-NYC-WTCR (1-866-692-9827) or visit us online at www.wtcregistry.org."

Dr. Henry Falk, Director of CDC's National Center for Environmental Health and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), said, "The snapshot report shows that most people who have enrolled to date reside in Manhattan, which is in line with our expectations for the registry. It is also important for us to continue to enroll people who commuted from other boroughs or volunteered from other areas of the country. If you were there on September 11, 2001, or in the months that followed, call us. It's important that you sign up."

Those who enroll in the WTC Health Registry are asked to complete a 30-minute telephone survey including questions on where they were on September 11, 2001, how long they were in areas with smoke and fumes, and whether they have had any health problems since. Registrants will be periodically contacted to answer questions about any health changes. This information will then be compared with that of the general population to identify any health problems possibly linked to 9/11. Ultimately, findings drawn from the health registry will enable researchers to observe patterns that may be invisible to individual physicians. All information given will be kept strictly private and confidential. No medical examinations or tests are required.

Highlights from Data Snapshot: Understanding the Health Impact of 9/11

Data Snapshot: Understanding the Long-Term Health Impact of 9/11 is a summary of demographic information about the 6,313 people who enrolled in the World Trade Center Health Registry between September 5 - September 30, 2003. Future reports will contain data for three-month periods. Once data collection is completed, quarterly reports will include statistics on health and mental health data, as these data are analyzed.

Residence

  • Sixty-five percent (4,081) people who enrolled in the registry in September 2003, are New York City residents.
  • Of the 4,081 New York City residents that enrolled, more than 2,600 (64%) are from Manhattan and Brooklyn. (See Figure 1)
  • Eighty-three percent of enrollees are New York State residents and 11% of enrollees are New Jersey residents. The next most frequent states represented are Connecticut, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, and Florida. (See Figure 2)

Exposure Group*

  • Seventy percent of people enrolled identified themselves as passersby south of Chambers Street on September 11, 2001. Twenty-nine percent identified themselves as workers at the WTC site and/or recovery operations on Staten Island, and 12% are residents south of Canal Street.

* As people can report belonging to more than one exposure group, totals do not add up to 100%.

Age and Gender

  • The average of adult enrollees across exposure group is 45 - 47 years of age.
  • Fifty-three percent of enrollees are male, while 47% of enrollees are female.

Who Should Enroll

Thousands of people from each of the five boroughs, the greater metropolitan area, and throughout the country are eligible for the WTC Health Registry, regardless of whether they have any health problems. Those in any one or more of the following categories should enroll:

  • People who were in a building, on the street, or on the subway south of Chambers Street on 9/11/01;
  • People who were involved in rescue, recovery, clean up or other activities at the WTC site* and/or WTC Recovery Operations on Staten Island any time between 9/11/01 and 6/30/02;
  • Students and staff at schools (pre-K to 12) or daycare centers south of Canal Street on 9/11/01; or
  • People who were living south of Canal Street on 9/11/01.

* The WTC site is bounded by Chambers Street, Broadway, Rector Street and the Hudson River.

These groups do not include all those who were exposed to the fumes, smoke, and dust. However they do insure a wide range of all possible types of exposure. The data from the Registry will provide vital information to everyone exposed about the occurrence of health effects, and the rate of and exposures related to any health effects that are found.

The WTC Health Registry is a collaborative effort between the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), with funding provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). RTI International, a non-profit research firm, is conducting interviews.

To find out more about the WTC Health Registry and the enrollment process, call toll-free 1-866-NYC-WTCR (1-866-692-9827) to enroll. Or visit www.wtcregistry.org, or call 311 (in NYC) or for more information.

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