Biomonitoring is the direct measurement of people’s exposure to toxic substances by measuring the substances or their metabolites in human specimens, such as blood or urine. Biomonitoring measurements provide health-relevant assessments of exposure because they indicate the combined amount of the chemical that actually gets into people from all environmental sources (for example, air, soil, water, dust, and food). Biomonitoring efforts help people determine the types of environmental chemicals they have been exposed to, the amount of those chemicals that actually gets into their bodies, and the concentrations of chemicals in their bodies that may be related to adverse health effects. Water–related biomonitoring data and statistics are highlighted below.
CDC Biomonitoring Programs or Databases
- National Biomonitoring Program (NBP)
NBP collects national biomonitoring data on the U.S. population and publishes the National Report on Human Exposure to Environmental Chemicals.
- National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES)
NHANES is a survey designed to collect information about the health and diet of people in the United States. NHANES is unique in that it combines a home interview with health tests and specimen collection (for example, urine or blood).
- National Report on Human Exposure to Environmental Chemicals
CDC’s National Report on Human Exposure to Environmental Chemicals provides an ongoing assessment of the U.S. population’s exposure to environmental chemicals using biomonitoring through nationally representative and cumulative biomonitoring data gathered from 1999–2000 through 2015–2016.