Environmental Epidemiology: Special Investigations & Consultations - Minnesota Dept. of Health

Consultations & Investigations

Understanding the Relationship between Health and the Environment

The Minnesota Department of Health receives many inquiries each year from Minnesotans who are concerned about environmental factors that may be causing cancer, asthma, and other chronic diseases and conditions in their communities. Most often, MDH responds to these requests by providing information and consultation. In some cases, MDH may conduct additional investigation.

Investigations involve multiple steps:

  • Gathering information about the request: requests may come from residents, workers, employers, local health officials, media or a concerned citizen or community
  • Collecting and analyzing available health data: data from several sources may be used to evaluate geographic patterns and trends over time. Sources include disease registries, birth and death records, and employer records.
  • Reviewing environmental data: if environmental hazards are a concern, available environmental monitoring data may be collected and reviewed.
  • Communicating findings and action steps: The final step of the investigation is to recommend appropriate action steps that communities and individuals can take, and to decide whether further health investigations are needed.


Fridley and Anoka County Cancer Concerns

For more information, contact Chronic Disease & Environmental Epidemiology.