Results from the third study of mortality and cancer incidence among F-111 aircraft maintenance personnel, commissioned by the Australian Government Department of Veterans' Affairs, were released on 20 February 2009 by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW).
The report, Third study of mortality and cancer incidence in aircraft maintenance personnel: A continuing study of F-111 Deseal/Reseal personnel, is a follow-up study into mortality and cancer incidence in aircraft maintenance personnel involved in the F-111 aircraft Deseal/Reseal (DSRS) programs between 1977 and 1999. Findings from this study are consistent with the 2004 study. Findings indicate that although overall cancer incidence in men who were involved in DSRS programs was higher than the Australian male population, the numbers were too small to be statistically significant. Additionally, overall mortality was lower for DSRS personnel when compared with the Australian male population.
The AIHW believes that the small numbers make interpretation of these results inconclusive and recommends that the study be repeated in 2011 when more data will be available to improve certainty about the findings.