08 February 2022
Islanders who have been affected by the historic use of PFOS at Jersey Airport are being invited to have a blood test for the chemical.
Fire-fighting foams that contained PFOS chemicals were used historically at Jersey Airport for training purposes, before the environmental significance of the chemicals was understood.
As a result, certain water supplies in the area were contaminated. When this was identified, sampling and associated remedial work was undertaken by the Government.
The Government understands that some residents are distressed by the incident and may want to have a blood test.
Islanders will need to meet certain criteria to be eligible for testing and must have:
- lived in the historical plume area for more than 1 year, or worked in the area for more than 2 years, between 1991 and 2006, and
- regularly consumed water from a borehole in the area, and
- at least one symptom that is consistent with the health concerns that may be related to PFOS, and
- obtain a GP referral for testing, signed and dated by the resident and the GP.
Testing will be provided free of charge, as well as up to two GP appointments. Eligible Islanders are asked to contact their GP to arrange an appointment to discuss referral. GP referrals need to be submitted before 16 March.
Assistant Chief Minister, Deputy Huelin, said: "We recognise that a number of local residents are concerned by this historic pollution incident and the Government has therefore decided to accommodate testing of those potentially affected by these chemicals.
"Public Health have listened to the deep concern of many residents and are organising blood testing for concerned Islanders who meet the criteria, so they can be tested in the most reliable way."
Chief Minister, Senator John Le Fondré, said: "This has been a very long-standing matter and I am pleased that we are now able to offer expert PFOS testing to eligible Islanders who have been concerned about the issue for some time.
"The testing supplier and laboratory we are using has an excellent reputation internationally, so Islanders who choose to be tested should be reassured that they will be receiving the best possible PFOS testing to guarantee accurate and reliable results.
"Two GP appointments will be provided free of charge to ensure that those Islanders who are eligible for testing have had a discussion with their GP to determine whether testing is the right option for them".