Statement from WTC Program Administrator John Howard, M.D. about the one-year anniversary of the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act
On July 1st we marked the one-year anniversary of the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act going into effect, officially launching the World Trade Center (WTC) Health Program. The WTC Health Program is a unique government program that provides medical evaluation and treatment to eligible 9/11 responders and survivors.
After opening our doors one year ago, we have made a lot of progress in our ability to respond to the needs of our members. We wanted to take this opportunity to reflect on the past year and how the Program has grown and what we will be focusing on in the coming months.
If you should have any questions about the WTC Health Program, please email us at WTC@cdc.gov.
John Howard, M.D.
Administrator, World Trade Center Health Program
- Since the Program became effective last year, it has helped over 60,000 people receive benefits, including those who were previously enrolled in the medical monitoring and treatment program and more than 1,200 new enrollees.
- The WTC Health Program Scientific/Technical Advisory Committee (STAC) met three times to discuss and prepare their recommendation on whether to add cancer to the list of health conditions covered by the Program.
- On June 13, we published a proposed rule to add certain types of cancers to the list of conditions the Program covers. We based this decision on a hierarchy of methods, including the recommendation of the STAC. After a 30 day public comment period, the Administrator will consider and address those comments as appropriate before issuing a final ruling.
- In May, Stony Brook Medical Center opened a new clinic in Brooklyn to serve 9/11 responders, providing another place to get care that is closer to home and/or work.
- The funding announcement for outreach and education cooperative agreements has gone out and we are looking forward to reviewing the proposals. The purpose of the awards is to recruit eligible responders and survivors and help them enroll in the Program to receive the care they need and deserve.
- We will continue to work to improve the Program, including establishing eligibility criteria for Pentagon and Shanksville, PA responders.
- We will expand the Program so that through the nationwide network of providers both responders and survivors who live outside the New York City metropolitan area can receive monitoring and treatment benefits near to where they live.