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Site Activities

Public Health Assessment (PHA)

ATSDR’s PHA examines outdoor air pollutant levels along Refinery Row to see if they are at levels that could harm the health of residents. The PHA also recommends ways to protect people’s health.

Dr. H.J. Williams Memorial Park

  • ATSDR evaluated data from stationary and mobile outdoor air monitors in the Corpus Christi Refinery Row area. We put air data from the 1980s through the end of 2010 into an electronic database. The database allowed us to look at:
    • Chemical levels
    • Weather data (wind speed, wind direction, temperature), to see whether any trends are influencing Refinery Row area measured chemical levels. Benzene was one such measured chemical.
  • ATSDR looked at health effects data to include in our PHA report. We used information from ATSDR toxicological profiles, recently published studies, and other sources. The health effects data describe experimental (animal) and epidemiologic (human) study results
    • For both short- and long-term chemical exposures
    • For both non-cancer and cancer health endpoints
    • On chemical mixtures (if this information is available)

    This type of information compared site-specific air contaminant exposure estimates with contaminant levels that may or may not be harmful.

  • As part of our report, ATSDR reviewed data from the Texas Department of State Health Services Asthma Control Program, Birth Defects Registry, Cancer Registry, and Diabetes Program to help describe the trends in new illness cases in the Corpus Christi Refinery Row area. We:
    • checked age-adjusted asthma hospital stay rates for Nueces County and San Patricio County compared with all of Texas.
    • compared the number of birth defect cases in the newborns of mothers living in Refinery Row area with Corpus Christi areas farther away.
    • checked the number of cancer cases in the Refinery Row area using the most recent information for both males and females.
    • compared the age-adjusted estimate of adults diagnosed with diabetes living in Nueces County and San Patricio County with the age-adjusted occurrence of diabetes for the state of Texas.
  • ATSDR completed its draft PHA for the Corpus Christi Refinery Row site in fall 2014. However, both internal agency review and external peer review will be completed before the draft PHA is released to the public. Community members can expect to see a public comment version of the PHA with our findings later this year. Every person in the community will have the chance to look at the PHA and comment on the results. ATSDR will look at all the comments and make sure that the comments and responses to them are in the final report.

Health Promotion

Health Promotion helps people, by way of awareness and knowledge of environmental health and other public health issues, have more control over their own health. ATSDR, community leaders, local physicians, and residents have met a number of times to discuss their health concerns.

  • Community Activity Report- May, 2013 (English [PDF - 863 KB], Spanish [PDF - 884 KB])
    This interagency Community Activity Report updates residents on all Corpus Christi Refinery Row activities from the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) Office of Environmental Justice and Tribal Affairs (OEJTA), the Regional Health Awareness Board (RHAB), the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ), and the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS).
  • On July 28, 2012, we participated in the 47th Annual Health Fair in Corpus Christi. The Nueces County Medical Society and Alliance organized and sponsored the Health Fair as a public service for the Corpus Christi community and surrounding area. Each year, thousands of people attend the Health Fair to take advantage of the free health screenings, education, training, and entertainment provided by the many exhibitors. As one of the exhibitors, ATSDR discussed our ongoing activities at our booth called “Environmental Public Health”.
  • From June 14–16, 2011, ATSDR worked with many local partners and held workshops in Corpus Christi to address environmental, safety, and health issues of concern to the community. The workshops entitled "It's All about Your Health" covered the following topics:
    • Preventing Exposure to Hazardous Substances
    • Practical Tips for a Safe and Healthy Home
    • Emergency Evacuation and Safety Planning
    • Oral Health for Children and Adults
    • Healthy Eating on a Budget

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