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Families of September 11 is now operating as the For Action Initiative. The web pages on this site are available for informational purposes only. Please visit us at www.foractioninitiative.org.

Support Resources - Health Issues

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Mayor's Office Releases the 2010 Annual Report on 9/11 Health
October 5,
The WTC Medical Working Group convened by Mayor Michael Bloomberg in 2007 has issued the third annual report on effects of exposure to toxic materials at the WTC subsequent to 9/11. Click on link to read report.

Study of 'Sarcoid-like' Granulomatous Pulmonary Disease Finds Elevated Rates in WTC Responders
January 9, 2011
Mount Sinai researchers coordinating the largest clinical study to date of "sarcoid-like" granulomatous pulmonary disease in World Trade Center (WTC) responders have found that the rate of the condition was increased in this group as compared to the records of pre-9/11 FDNY personnel.

Worker Protection Task Force Makes Recommendations on 9/11 Disabilities
March 5, 2008
State Labor Commissioner M. Patricia Smith announced today that the 9/11 Worker Protection Task Force has issued an Interim Report outlining their recommendations for evaluating disabilities related to the attack on the World Trade Center (WTC). The recommendations follow a year of testimony and evaluation of evidence relating to the terrorist attack and its aftermath. The 9/11 Worker Protection Task Force was created to assure that public employees who participated in rescue, recovery and cleanup operations and sustained injuries or illnesses directly related to the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center would be eligible for accidental disability benefits if their injuries or illnesses prevented the safe performance of their essential job duties. To read the report, click on the link.



9/11 Health Bill Authors Provide Info About New Law
January 25, 2011
U.S. Reps. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), and Peter King (R-NY), authors of H.R. 847, the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act released four new documents from the Congressional Research Service (CRS) to help answer questions that members of the media and the public may have about the new law. The Zadroga law provides health care for those exposed to toxins released by the collapse of the World Trade Center towers, and reopens the federal September 11 Victim Compensation Fund to provide economic relief to those harmed by the attacks. Below are links to the four documents: A Q&A on eligibility for health and compensation benefits under the Zadroga Act: http://maloney.house.gov/documents/911recovery/AnswerstoPL111-347questionsMemo1-20-11.pdf A timeline of dates by which the new law will be implemented: http://maloney.house.gov/documents/911recovery/MemoImplementationDatesPL111-347forRepMaloney1-6-11.pdf A brief, plain-language summary of the law: http://maloney.house.gov/documents/911recovery/MemoSummaryofPL111-347forRepMaloney1-6-11.pdf A section-by-section summary of the law : http://maloney.house.gov/documents/911recovery/SecbySecSummaryofPL111-347Memo1-19-11.pdf

A Message from the Special Master for the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund
June 24, 2011
Sheila L. Birnbaum, the Special Master for the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund sent the following email outlining her priorities for administering the fund. She also announced the posting of draft rules on regulations.gov. Read the email below. For more information on the fund, visit justice.gov/vcf ———- Dear Friend, When I was appointed to serve as Special Master for the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund, I set two initial priorities. First, I would meet with the men and women who would be most affected by the VCF, so that we could construct a program that best meets their needs and interests. Second, I wanted to publish proposed rules to govern the VCF as soon as possible, in draft form, so that there would be ample time for others to review them and give me comments on them, before I have to finalize the rules and open the VCF later this year. Over the past month, I have received invaluable input from the many individuals I have met with, and I hope to meet with many more over the coming months. Today, I have published my proposed rules, and would like to invite the public to comment on them. The rules, and a process for commenting on them, are available at: http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=DOJ-CIV-2011-0017-0001 Among other things, the new regulations propose a process by which claimants from the first VCF can amend their claims to reflect new injuries, and also provide for the VCF to cover additional diseases as scientific knowledge evolves. My goal is for the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund to be fair, transparent, and easy to navigate. In order to achieve that goal, I intend to build on the strong foundation that was established by Special Master Kenneth Feinberg in the first iteration of the Victim Compensation Fund and listen carefully to the views and concerns expressed by those who will be most affected by the program. Given the Victim Compensation Fund’s success in its previous iteration, I propose to implement the original processes where I can and to propose additional or different procedures where the Zadroga Act requires a different approach. At the outset, I would highlight some key principles that will guide my effort to create a process that is fair, transparent, and easy to navigate. First, I intend to make decisions based on the best scientific and medical evidence that is available. The Zadroga Act requires the Special Master to make a number of decisions about who is eligible to bring a claim, based on the nature of the individual’s injuries, how it was caused, and whether the individual was present in an area where there was a demonstrable risk of physical harm resulting from the crashes. In order to make these determinations in a fair manner, I intend to look to the evidence that scientists and medical professionals rely on in exercising their best professional judgment. I also intend for the Victim Compensation Fund to keep pace with the evolving science and to ensure that as we learn more about conditions that may have been caused by the crashes or related debris-removal efforts, we are able to compensate claimants accordingly. Second, Congress has appropriated a capped amount – $2.775 billion payable over a period of years – for this program. Only $875 million may be spent in the first five years of the program with the remainder being paid out in the sixth year. It is important therefore to assure that funds are targeted to the payment of eligible claims and to avoid procedures or guidelines that will dilute those payments. Funds used to process ineligible claims or for unnecessary administrative costs result in fewer funds available to pay intended and deserving claimants. In implementing the program, I intend to initiate procedures that will permit efficiency without sacrificing fairness, and to seek ways to minimize administrative expenses, thereby maximizing the amount available for distribution to eligible claimants. Third, it is exceedingly important, in my view, to fully investigate the facts and circumstances surrounding the response, clean-up and debris removal activities necessitated by the attacks and the injuries that have resulted from these activities. To achieve these goals over the next several months, I will hold meetings with interested parties to explain the Victim Compensation Fund and the proposed regulations, to hear your thoughts, and to answer as many questions as I can. I also look forward to reviewing your written comments about these proposed regulations, so that I can make the best decisions possible to refine the regulations and administer the program. Yours, Sheila

A summary of the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act
February 3, 2011
This summary of the eligibility guidelines and provided benefits was released by the office of Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney.

An Overview of Proposed Rules for Implementation of the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act
June 23, 2011
The Federal Register has published proposed changes to and rules for implementation of the 9/11 Health and Compensation Act. Click on link to read document.

WTC Environmental Health Center
March 6, 2003
The World Trade Center Environmental Health Center is a Center of Excellence to treat people who have health problems as a result of 9/11. The Center has locations at Bellevue Hospital on the East Side of Manhattan, Gouverneur Healthcare Services in Lower Manhattan and Elmhurst Hospital in Queens. The Center works in partnership with community organizations and residents affected by 9/11. You can get treatment even if you cannot pay or don’t have health insurance. For more information call 1-877-WTC-0107 or visit the link above.



Asthma Rate Among WTC Responders Twice That of National Average
March 23, 2010
Responders to the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center suffer asthma at a rate of more than twice the general U.S. population, according to research conducted by the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York. Click on link to read article.

Debate Persists Regarding Cancer Rates Among 9/11 Responders
March 30, 2010
Medical experts disagree on the question of whether exposure to 9/11 toxins may be responsible for cancers found in rescue, recovery, and clean-up workers who reponded to the World Trade Center attacks.

President's 2010 Budget Adds $70 Million for 9/11 Health Care
May 8, 2009
President Obama's proposed budget for fiscal year 2010 includes more than $70 million in new funding for the medical screening and treatment of people affected by 9/11. Click on link to learn more.


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