Department of Epidemiology and Population Health, Montefiore Medical Center and Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York.
Fire Department of the City of New York, Bureau of Health Services, Brooklyn, New York.
Pulmonology Division, Department of Medicine, Montefiore Medical Center and Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York.
The goals of this study were to assess the impact of work at the World Trade Center (WTC) site in relation to new, post-9/11/2001 (9/11) antibody to hepatitis C Virus (anti-HCV); and, evaluate secular trends in WTC-exposed male Fire Department of New York City (FDNY) Firefighters and Emergency Medical Services (EMS) responders.
FDNY monitors responder health through physical exams and routine blood work. We used descriptive statistics to compare trans-9/11 and post-9/11 incidence and to assess trends in prevalence from 2000 to 2012.
Trans-9/11 incidence of new anti-HCV was 0.42 per 100 persons compared with post-9/11 incidence of 0.34 (P = 0.68). Overall seroprevalence was 1.3%; rates declined from 1.79 per 100 to 0.49 per 100 over time (P < 0.0001).
Work at the WTC was not associated with new infection. Biennial seroprevalence in responders declined over time, supporting the FDNY decision to discontinue routine annual testing in this cohort.