Lawmakers Signal Support For Renewed Investigation Into Seacoast Cancer Cluster

Feb 28, 2017

The cancer cluster taskforce met in October in Portsmouth City Hall as part of their months-long investigation.
Credit Jason Moon for NHPR

A bill to create a commission to investigate a string of pediatric cancer cases on the Seacoast received unanimous support from the House Committee on Health, Human Services and Elderly Affairs today. The bill also has the support of Governor Chris Sununu.

The commission would take up the work of a now-defunct taskforce that was investigating the unusually high number of rare pediatric cancer cases on the Seacoast.

That taskforce’s investigation raised concerns about environmental threats to public health in the region.

NHPR reporter Jason Moon joined All Things Considered host Peter Biello to talk about the investigation into the cancer cluster.

Mindi Messmer, a Democratic state representative from Rye, is lead sponsor of the bill.

“This is, again, a constituent request. The constituents asked for the taskforce to be formed by the governor to begin with. This would establish a mechanism to continue that work.”

A separate bill to create a commission that would monitor public health data to detect future cancer clusters also received unanimous support from the House Committee on Health, Human Services and Elderly Affairs.