WTC Health Program News Vol. 1 July 2012
A Message from Dr. John Howard
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“The biggest measure of
success is to make sure
everyone who qualifies
for this program enrolls
and receives the care
Dr. John Howard
WTC Health Program
Many illnesses are treated by the WTC Health Program. Some of the most common WTC conditions include:
- Breathing problems (asthma, bronchitis, interstitial lung disease)
- Heartburn or reflux (such as Gastroesophageal Reflux Disorder-GERD)
- Inflamed nasal passages/sinuses (chronic rhinosinusitis)
- Mental health issues (anxiety, depression, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder [PTSD])
Lila Nordstrom was in a drafting class when the first tower was struck. From the 10th floor of Stuyvesant High School, three blocks away, “we saw the whole thing happening,” she said.
Her teacher kept teaching. Downstairs, administrators were getting conflicting
advice on evacuating the 3,000-student public school for gifted kids.
“I’m asthmatic and after the first building fell, we saw the dust cloud,”
Nordstrom said. She left class for the nurse’s office. When the evacuation
call came, students were told to walk north.
Welcome to the first issue of the World Trade Center (WTC) Health Program Newsletter. Our goals are to provide program news, share participants’ stories and help eligible
participants understand how to apply to the program.
The WTC Health Program was established by the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act of 2010 (the Zadroga Act). Congress passed the bill in December 2010
and President Obama signed the law into effect on January 2, 2011. The program opened on July 1, 2011. This newsletter celebrates that one year anniversary. It is a good time to reflect on how we got here, what we’ve accomplished together, and where we are going.
“This country is the best country in the
world,” said Gabriel Pacino, an Italian native who lives in the Bronx.
“If you’re not lazy, you can improve your life. I came here when I was 14 years old and I went to work. I did anything I could do—break concrete, anything. I went to school at night. And I became a plumber, with the union.”
Dr. John Howard, Administrator of the WTC Health Program, has proposed
that the program cover treatment for certain types of cancer. Visit our website
or watch for the October newsletter for updates.
Brooklyn WTC clinic opens
WTC responders from Brooklyn now have a clinic closer to home. In May, Stony Brook Medical Center formally opened a new WTC Health Program clinic on the SUNY Downstate campus in Flatbush. Visit the WTC Health Program website at www.cdc.gov/wtc/clinics.html to
see a full list of clinics that serve FDNY, responders, and survivors.
Heroes’ salute marks
10 years The National September 11 Memorial & Museum hosted a tribute on May 30 for the first responders, construction workers, volunteers, relief workers, engineers and contractors who worked so long and hard at Ground Zero. The event marked the
10th anniversary of the formal ending date of the recovery operations on May 30, 2002.
How to Join the Program
The WTC Health Program provides health tests and medical care for
people affected by the attacks on September 11, 2001. Please share
this with co-workers, friends, and neighbors. The steps to enroll are:
- Figure out if you are eligible. Visit www.cdc.gov/wtc/apply.html. Or, call toll-free: 1–888–982–4748
(1–888–WTC–HP4U). The program serves people in these four
categories: Fire Department of New York City members; other General Responders (police, workers, volunteers); survivors (people in the
NYC disaster area); and Pentagon/Shanksville, PA responders.
- Gather the documents you will need. You must provide
documents showing where you were and/or what work you did on
or after 9/11. Responders may get these from their work or their
volunteer group. Survivors may use utility bills or store or restaurant
receipts. The application form provides details on the kinds of
documents you may submit, including letters from supervisors or coworkers.
It also explains what to do if you cannot get documentation.
- Get the application form. Download the form here or call toll-free and we’ll send you a copy:
- Fill out the form. Be sure to give your daytime phone number,
address, and email address, if you have one.
- Send in the form. Be sure to include copies of your supporting
documents. Fax toll-free to: 1–877–646–5308. Or mail to:
WTC Health Program, P.O. Box 7000, Rensselaer, NY 12144.