Expert Report

Analysis of Cancer Risks in Populations Near Nuclear Facilities: Phase 2 Pilot Planning (2015)

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This brief report provides an expert committee's advice to the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) about general methodological considerations for carrying out a pilot study of cancer risks near seven nuclear facilities in the United States. The pilot study, which was a recommendation of a previous NAS report, aims to evaluate the technical feasibility of implementing two study designs described in that same report for carrying out a nationwide study of cancer risks in populations near nuclear facilities in the United States.

The committee's advice is presented in the form of 14 considerations related to procedures, general methodologies, and specific methodologies for carrying out the pilot study. The committee notes that it is important to demonstrate transparency during the pilot study and communicate with stakeholders. The committee cautions that the pilot study will be of limited use for estimating cancer risks in populations near the seven pilot nuclear facilities because of small sample sizes. Interpretation and communication of risk estimates from the pilot study, if reported, should be done with great caution.