Parker Waichman LLP, a law firm that has fought to expand coverage for illnesses developed by 9/11 first responders, is pleased to announce that four additional cancers have been added to the list of cancers covered under the federal Zadroga 9/11 law.
Dr. John Howard, World Trade Center Health Program administrator, noted that January legal documents added several provisions to the Zadroga Act, including revising the definition of “rare cancers” to include invasive cervical cancer and testicular cancer. Dr. Howard reversed an earlier policy under which brain and pancreatic cancers were ineligible. “Childhood cancers” will now include any type of cancer diagnosed in a person younger than 20.
Matthew J. McCauley, a former NYPD Officer, a first responder at the World Trade Center, and lead attorney in the WTC/Zadroga group at Parker Waichman, said, “We are pleased to see that the Zadroga Act is being expanded to provide more coverage to WTC first responders.” The firm has been fighting for “9/11 heroes since the beginning, and will never forget the ultimate sacrifices they have made,” McCauley said.
Many of those who served in the 9/11 rescue and recovery efforts developed serious illnesses at the time because of exposure to toxic dust in the air. Toxic exposure also caused cancer and illnesses that can take years to develop. The New York Daily News reported last year that as many as 65,000 people, first responders, survivors, and others, are part of a World Trade Center medical monitoring and treatment program. The Zadroga Act – named for the late New York Police Department detective James Zadroga – was signed into law in December 2010. The Act provides compensation to first responders who suffered illnesses or injury due to the toxic dust and the WTC site. The Zadroga Act reopened the 9/11 Victims Compensation fund for five years.
In September 2012, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) added more than 50 cancers to the list of illnesses eligible for coverage. The January 2014 amendment added these four cancers to the covered list:
- Malignant neoplasm of the cervix Uteri (invasive cervical cancer)
- Malignant neoplasm of the testis (testicular cancer)
- Brain cancer
- Pancreatic cancer