April 19, 2024

M- Caorals

Healthy and Fitness

State health officials: No cause for alarm following cancer probe in Northport-East Northport School District

NORTHPORT, N.Y. — Results of a highly anticipated cancer study in the Northport-East Northport School District were detailed in a virtual town hall on Thursday night.

“Based on the investigation, we do not believe there is any cause for alarm. It is still possible that the higher number of leukemia cases found in the Northport High School class of 2016 is due to chance,” said Aura Weinstein, director of the state Department of Health’s Cancer Surveillance Program.

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The Department of Health began its investigation in 2020, following community concerns of leukemia among the 2016 graduating class.

Health officials say this does not appear to be part of any larger pattern.

Researchers concluded it could possibly be related to factors “not possible to uncover,” including “environmental exposures.”

The investigation did find a “statistically significant” number of cases among people of all ages in the district as a whole for some types of cancer. Others, there were fewer cases.

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CBS2 spoke to a parent who has been raising environmental concerns at and around Northport Middle School for years.

“I was really infuriated, listening to this meeting. I can tell you none of my questions I emailed in were answered,” East Northport resident Denise Schwartz said. “My message to the Department of Health, based on research I have done, is they were not truthful this evening. They are totally making light of a very serious situation that is a danger to our community.”

The Department of Health said it does not believe a further investigation is warranted.