George St. John Perrott, 86, a retired biostatistician and division chief of the U.S. Public Health Service, died of cancer Sunday at Sibley Memorial Hospital.

Mr. Perrott worked for the health service for 25 years before retiring in 1958. As a principal statistician with the agency, he directed the National Health Survey of 1935 to 1936, which provided a base for national projections of different illnesses and disabilities.

He was named assistant chief and then, in the early 1940s, chief and public health methods division of the public health service. He also directed the National Health Survey during his last two years with the government.

From 1962 to 1963, he was director of research and statistics for the Group Health Association of America, then worked as a consultant until retiring in 1975.

He was a fellow of the American Public Health Association and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He had been chairman of the board of editors of Public Health Reports, the journal of the Public Health Service.

Mr. Perrott was a native of Grand Forks, N.D. He earned bachelor's and master's degrees in physics at the University of North Dakota and also studied at Princeton and Johns Hopkins universities. During World War I, he worked for the Army's chemical warfare research service.

After the war, he joined the U.S. Bureau of Mines and became superintendent of its Pittsburgh station before entering private industry in 1931. He came to Washington two years later.

A resident of Bethesda, Mr. Perrott had lived there for more than 30 years.

Survivors include his wife, Ruth, of Bethesda.