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ATSDR Press Room

Health of Ottawa County Residents Similar to All Oklahoma Report Finds


Ottawa County, Oklahoma

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The health status of Ottawa County residents is similar to that of other Oklahoma residents concludes a final public health assessment released by the federal Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) and the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH).

ATSDR and OSDH reviewed health information from all state databases compiled between 1994 and 2005. The databases included Oklahoma state cancer and birth defects registries, special education and newborn screening programs, death certificates, and a telephone survey of health conditions in adults.

A public comment version of the report was released in November 2006, and the agencies presented findings of their health outcome data analysis at public meetings. Also, state and federal health agencies met with the Ottawa County Health Department to discuss the results of this public health assessment and to determine if any additional health education activities were warranted.

The public health assessment concludes:

  • Most diseases and health conditions occur at similar rates in Ottawa County and the state of Oklahoma.  This includes such conditions as asthma, hypertension, arthritis, coronary heart disease, myocardial infarction, stroke, high cholesterol, osteoporosis, diabetes, high blood pressure, serious mental illness, obesity, and smoking in adults. 
  • Among infants and children most diseases or health conditions
  • such as rates of low-birth weight babies, and preterm babies, and the prevalence of hearing loss in newborns
  • occur at similar or lower in Ottawa County.
  • The occurrence of autism and learning disabilities in children from Ottawa County is similar to that in the state.  Birth defect rates in Ottawa County are lower than the state rates for seven of the nine years monitored.
  • For the top ten cancers, such as breast, prostate, lung, colorectal, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, and bladder, the number of new cases from 1997 to 2003 in Ottawa County and in the five zip code area surrounding the Tar Creek Superfund Site is similar to cancer occurrence in the state.
  • Death rates in Ottawa County are similar to or lower than the state's death rate for blood pressure, liver disease, diabetes, atherosclerosis, Alzheimer's disease, and kidney disease.  The death rate from heart disease in Ottawa County is higher than the death rate for the state.  The higher death rate for heart disease in Ottawa County may be due to chance variation.

The public health assessment analyzed the rates of diseases and heath conditions for Ottawa County residents and other Oklahoma residents.  The state databases contain no exposure information on the cases in the database.  The results of this public health assessment cannot be used to determine whether contamination from the Tar Creek Superfund Site directly contributes to disease and death in Ottawa County.

ATSDR expects to conduct additional meetings to evaluate the feasibility of a health outcome data review focused on American Indians and other residents who live in and around the Tar Creek Superfund Site.  

To review the public health assessment and ATSDR's Plan for Tar Creek, visit www.atsdr.cdc.gov/sites/tarcreek or the Miami Public Library, located at 200 North Main St. in Miami, OK.

Community members can contact ATSDR for more information about the public health assessment: ATSDR Epidemiologist, Steve Dearwent, PhD at 770-488-3665 or SDearwent@cdc.gov; ATSDR Regional Representative Jennifer Lyke at 214-665-8362 or JLyke@cdc.gov; or Health Communication Specialist, La Freta Dalton at 770-488-0711 or LDalton@cdc.gov.

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.

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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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Related News Releases For Oklahoma, USA

 

Health of Ottawa County Residents Similar to Other Oklahoma Residents Says Report
Release Date: Tuesday, November 21, 2006
The health status of Ottawa County residents is similar to other Oklahoma residents says a public health assessment released today by the federal Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) and the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH).

Tar Creek Superfund Site - Federal and State Health Agencies to Discuss Health Findings with Community November 28 and 29
Release Date: Wednesday, November 15, 2006
The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) and the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) will host public availability sessions November 28 and 29 to discuss findings of the Public Health Assessment, Occurrence of Selected Health Conditions in Ottawa County, Oklahoma.

ATSDR finds Hudson Refinery site no longer a health hazard, Cushing, Oklahoma
Release Date: Tuesday, July 11, 2006
Residents near the Hudson Refinery site in Cushing, Okla., may be exposed to site-related contaminants, but at levels too low to pose health risks, says the federal Agency for Toxic Substance and Disease Registry (ATSDR). The site previously posed a past public health hazard due to long-term exposures to hazardous chemicals on the site.

ATSDR Finds Hudson Refinery Site No Longer a Health Hazard, Cushing, OK
Release Date: Monday, April 24, 2006
Exposure to site-related contaminants at the Hudson Refinery site in Cushing, Okla., does not exist at levels high enough to pose public health risks to nearby residents, says the federal Agency for Toxic Substance and Disease Registry. The site posed a past public health hazard due to long-term exposures to hazardous chemicals on the site.

ATSDR Releases Report to Congress on Exposure to Lead at Tar Creek Superfund Site in Ottawa County, Oklahoma
Release Date: Monday, November 08, 2004
Average blood lead levels and the percentage of children with elevated blood lead levels - at or above 10 micrograms per deciliter - decreased among children aged 1-5 years who were living in the Tar Creek, Ottawa County, Okla., area and who were tested for lead during 1995-2003. However, people who live in Tar Creek, especially residents of Picher and Cardin, may still be exposed to lead from mine tailings, or chat, because they may live close to chat piles, mill and mine residues, and flotation ponds.

ATSDR Releases Final Public Health Assessment For The Imperial Refining Company
Release Date: Monday, January 07, 2002
The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), a public health agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, has released the final version of its public health assessment for the Imperial Refining Company in Ardmore, Oklahoma.

ATSDR To Hold Public Availability Session In Ardmore, Oklahoma
Release Date: Wednesday, January 24, 2001
The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, or A-T-S-D-R, will hold a Public Availability Session in Ardmore, Oklahoma, on Wednesday January 24, 2001. The purpose of the session is to provide residents of Ardmore with an opportunity to discuss their health concerns related to the Imperial Refining Company site with agency representatives.

ATSDR Announces Community Meetings For Tulsa Fuel And Manufacturing Site, Collinsville, OK
Release Date: Tuesday, July 20, 1999
The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), a public health agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, will hold a public availability session for residents of Collinsville, Oklahoma, on Tuesday, July 27, 1999. The availability session will be an opportunity for citizens to discuss any health concerns they might have in regard to the Tulsa Fuel and Manufacturing site.

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