MN Biomonitoring Program: Framework - Minnesota Dept. of Health

Strategic Plan: Protecting Future Generations

photo of woman working in laboratory

MN Biomonitoring: Chemicals in People developed a Strategic Plan for an ongoing program that will track exposures to chemicals in vulnerable Minnesota populations with a focus on pregnant women, children, and disadvantaged communities. This program can provide data to inform decisions and evaluate actions for protecting future generations.

Vision, Purpose, and Strategies

Vision: Minnesotans will lead healthier lives in safer environments


  • Identify differences in the levels of chemicals among Minnesota's diverse populations, which may differ by income, ethnicity, culture, or geographic location
  • Assess the need for public health policy and action
  • Track changes over time to find out whether actions taken to reduce chemical exposures have been effective


  1. Protect Future Generations
  2. Select Chemicals for Biomonitoring So People Can Take Action
  3. Use a Smart, Cost-Effective Tracking Approach

"Many studies of environmental exposures focus on adults. Fewer studies focus on pregnant women and infants. Given that funding for the National Children's Study in Minnesota is faltering, there is a huge gap in data about pregnant women and children. With continued funding, the MDH Biomonitoring Program can help address this gap." Beth Baker, MD, Specialist in Occupational and Environmental Medicine, St. Paul, MN.

1) Protect Future Generations:
PROTECT those who are most vulnerable to the effects of chemicals found in Minnesota and who are least able to modify their environment to avoid exposure.

  • Newborns and children
  • Women of childbearing age
  • Disadvantaged communities

2) Select Chemicals For Biomonitoring So People Can Take Action:
SELECT chemicals that are a concern in Minnesota because of our natural environment, industries, or diverse people. We can choose to study chemicals that provide the most meaningful data for making public health decisions, such as those with known health effects or identifiable sources of exposure.

3) Use a Smart, Cost-Effective Tracking Approach:
USE systematic, repeated biomonitoring in vulnerable Minnesota communities to track chemical exposures. We can track trends over time, see whether certain demographic or geographic groups have higher exposures than others, and evaluate efforts to reduce exposure in these groups. The program can start with a small number of communities and expand in the future as funding allows.

Data can be integrated with the MN Tracking Program, and used to inform public health action and decisions by communities, policy makers, and public health officials. Individuals can use the information to make personal health choices.

About the Strategic Plan

This Strategic Plan was developed with our expert Advisory Panel and is based on lessons learned from biomonitoring projects, meetings with diverse stakeholders, and national guidance. More information can be found in our 2013 Legislative Report.

Updated Monday, February 10, 2014 at 10:24AM