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Environmental Health Division
Establishment and Evolution of Minnesota Biomonitoring and Tracking Programs
MN Tracking and Biomonitoring Legislative Report 2019 (PDF)
Evolution of MN biomonitoring and tracking programs
First established by the Minnesota Legislature in 2007, Minnesota’s Environmental Health Tracking and Biomonitoring program today brings together, in one place, data from statewide monitoring and surveillance of environmental hazards, human exposures and population health.
Environmental epidemiologists study the connections between environment, exposures, health and social conditions, all of which are important to understanding how best to protect the health of Minnesota communities.
Data and information gained from this work help inform program and policy decisions; support new funding for local actions; and track the impacts of community and state programs working to improve public health.
Vulnerable Minnesota populations are focus of biomonitoring
Biomonitoring measures chemicals in people or exposure—the amount of a chemical hazard in samples of people’s blood or urine. Working with communities and monitoring harmful chemicals in people helps identify the sources of exposures, what actions are needed to prevent exposure, and how environmental hazards impact public health. A strategic focus of the Minnesota Biomonitoring Program is vulnerable Minnesota populations with a focus on pregnant women, children, and disadvantaged communities.
The MN Biomonitoring program was established by the 2007 Minnesota Legislature under Minnesota Statute 144.995. It is funded by the joint Minnesota Pollution Control Agency-MDH Environmental Risk Initiative.
Activities of the Minnesota Biomonitoring Program are guided by the Commissioner of Health and an expert Scientific Advisory Panel, and are conducted in coordination with the Minnesota Tracking Program.
Partners include the MDH Public Health Laboratory and the CDC National Biomonitoring Program.
Minnesota among CDC's national tracking grantees
For many years, no system existed at the state or national level to track the exposures and health effects related to environmental hazards. In 2002, the CDC established the National Environmental Public Health Tracking Network to build a sustainable national environmental surveillance (tracking) system and bridge the gap between public health and the environment.
Currently, the CDC National Tracking Network, which integrates nationwide health and environment data, funds a cooperative agreement between 26 states, including Minnesota, to maintain local environmental public health tracking networks.