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Sir Liam Donaldson has ordered an investigation to find out why Norfolk has a rate of oesophageal cancer that is above average.
20 April 2006 10:26
The country's chief medical officer has laid bare startling figures that reveal Norfolk's deadly cancer legacy.
According to a report by Sir Liam Donaldson (pictured below right), the county has a rate of oesophageal cancer that is above average and he has ordered an investigation to find out why.
The report was sparked by an Evening News campaign for an inquiry into the link between the number of oesophageal cancer cases in the county and chemical tests carried out by Government scientists in the skies above Norwich in the 1960s.
The campaign, which was launched in August, was backed by Norwich North MP Dr Ian Gibson and prominent medical expert, consultant Wyn Parry.
Mr Parry's own research at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, where he is based, showed he carries out around 80 operations each year for oesophageal cancer, which is 50 per cent more than he would expect for the area.
He linked the cases to the release of the toxic chemical cadmium into the atmosphere in tests by the Ministry of Defence more than 40 years ago....
....The MoD has always insisted it was safe and two independent reports cleared them of toxicity, but a classified document obtained by the Evening News showed there was no evidence the chemicals used were properly examined at the time.