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Establishment of Electronic Cancer Incidence and Environmental Facility Maps – N.Y. Pub. Health Law § 2401-b

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Establishment of Electronic Cancer Incidence and Environmental Facility Maps

The federal Center for Disease Control and Protection and New York’s Department of Health together created the Environmental Facilities and Cancer Mapping project, which maps out incidences of cancer in small geographic areas of the state and overlays them with the location of certain environmental facilities, while highlighting areas where the incidence is higher or lower than expected.  This law provides instructions to the “technical advisory group” on how to create the maps while protecting patient confidentiality.

 “Environmental facilities” include all the facilities listed under § 3-0317 of the New York environmental conservation law, and cancer incidence includes data on twenty-three distinct types of cancer as listed in the section.  The law requires that the technical advisory group make statistically and scientifically sound recommendations to the Department of Health on the appropriate use and easy communication of this data and these maps.  The law requires that the NY Department of Health, NY Department of Environmental Conservation and the technical advisory group for this project collaborate to establish and maintain a computer mapping system for plotting cancer incidence, location of environmental facilities, and cancer clusters, if any.

The law requires that cancer incidence be reported by census block, except in situations where reporting by census block would disclose the identity of the person with cancer.  In such cases, the Department of Health is required to aggregate the data of as few census blocks as practicable to protect such person’s identity.  The law then sets a detailed set of deadlines for the department and the technical advisory group to make the information available to the public.

Current as of June 2015