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The US National Institutes of Health (NIH) has negotiated an agreement with the Navajo Nation that will allow researchers on an agency-funded study to access health data from tribe members. The arrangement does not cover genetic data or access to biological samples.

Officials announced the data-sharing agreement on 7 May. It will give researchers working on the Environmental Influences on Child Health Outcomes (ECHO) project — a seven-year initiative launched in 2016 to track the long-term health of 50,000 children in the United States — access to some data from an ongoing study of Navajo children’s health. The arrangement is a first between a tribe and a nationwide research consortium such as ECHO.

The Navajo Birth Cohort Study (NBCS) follows the children of about 1,600 Navajo parents from birth to determine how exposure to uranium and other pollutants from mining activities on Navajo reservations affect the kids’ development. ECHO researchers will be able to use NBCS data — such as measurements of metal exposure in participants — in their larger study, but won’t be able to take biological samples themselves.

…continue reading ‘Navajo Nation and US Health Agency Reach Data-Sharing Agreement’

Image: By Bassoonstuff (Bobby C. Hawkins) – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=28948326

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