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Release: Jan. 5, 2001

UI to host public meetings on former nuclear weapons plant workers

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The University of Iowa College of Public Health will host two public meetings this month about UI researchers' efforts to gather information about the health of former nuclear weapons workers at the Iowa Army Ammunition Plant in Middletown, near Burlington.

The first meeting will be from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Jan. 10 at the Union Hall, 16452 Highway 34, in Middletown (one mile east of the IAAP administration building). A second meeting, co-sponsored by the UI Alumni Association, will be from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Jan. 24 at the Burlington Memorial Auditorium, 200 Front St., in Burlington.

The U.S. Department of Energy has requested that the UI College of Public Health evaluate the long-range health conditions of former nuclear weapons workers who may be at risk for health problems because of their employment at the Iowa Army Ammunition Plant.

Laurence Fuortes, M.D., UI associate professor of occupational and environmental health, and director of the Burlington Atomic Energy Commission Plant Former Worker Program, and colleagues aim to identify all the Line 1 workers with employment histories spanning any time period between 1947 and 1975. The researchers will determine substances and occupational hazards to which this group of workers may have been exposed in the production of atomic weapons, and develop a plan, based on the results of discussions and questionnaires, for possible further medical screening.

Fuortes will highlight the goals and present status of the project, and discuss the eligibility of participants and how this project might benefit former workers and their families.

For more information, call (866) 282-5818.

University of Iowa Health Care describes the partnership between the UI College of Medicine and the UI Hospitals and Clinics and the patient care, medical education and research programs and services they provide.