Pilot program to test blood for chemicals is short on volunteers

Bucks and Montgomery counties are part of a pilot program to test residents' exposure to dangerous chemicals.

Kim Glovas
June 08, 2018 - 9:15 pm
Blood test
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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) -- Bucks and Montgomery counties are part of a pilot program to test residents' exposure to dangerous chemicals. But the Pennsylvania Department of Health is having trouble coming up with enough people for the study. 

The chemicals, per or poly-fluro-alkyl substances, or PFAS, were used widely on U.S. military bases in firefighting foam. Residents living near the Naval Air Warfare Center in Warminster and the Naval Air Station in Willow Grove have been sent letters asking them to participate in a blood testing survey. 500 people are needed, but so far the Department of Health says less than 350 have signed up. 

The department says it will continue sending letters until enough people take part. The first letters were sent out about a month ago. 

A spokesman for the Bucks County Health Department says county sites are basically being used as phlobotomy labs.