This from their web site:
The Gulf Coast Oil Spill has the potential to affect human health in addition to the effects already seen on animal and marine life. CDC, along with the affected Gulf Coast states, has developed a plan to track the potential short-term health effects related to the oil spill in the affected communities. Surveillance systems track changes in the number and severity of illnesses and injuries in a population, alerting public health officials to trends that require further investigation.
CDC, with state and local health departments, is conducting surveillance across the five Gulf States for health effects possibly related to the oil spill using national and state-based surveillance systems. These surveillance systems are being used to track symptoms related to the eyes, skin, and respiratory, cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, and neurological systems, including worsening of asthma, cough, chest pain, eye irritation, nausea, and headache. If the surveillance systems identify groups of people with these symptoms, state and local public health officials will be able to follow-up as needed to investigate whether there is an association between the symptoms and the oil spill. This follow-up is important because the same symptoms could be related to a different cause.
Side note - Even though there's a sign in sheet for the workers and the contractor is supposed to turn it in to the CDC so that they can monitor the health effects this is all voluntary. My guess will be that they'll never see half the workers or do much monitoring since it is all voluntary. And contractors tend to use illegals because they won't pay them much if at all knowing that they won't complain. Remember 911? It wasn't until several months later that workers at the site started getting very sick. God you'd think we'd learn something.
Now for the kicker as I like to say. It would cost less than $40 for the protective gear necessary to protect these worker and about $6 a day for disposable suits, gloves and filters. Forty bucks now seems much cheaper than the thousands they'll be paying out for medical bills later. Why is it that they are so short sighted?