The World Trade Center Health Program (WTCHP) put forth a notice of proposed rulemaking today for the purpose of adding prostate cancer as a covered illness under the WTCHP. The proposed rule has been published for public comment through the United States Federal Register beginning today through August 1, 2013.
A petition for prostate cancer coverage under the WTCHP was organized by the New York City Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association and given to World Trade Center Health Program Director, Dr. John Howard on May 2nd of this year. The petition prompted Dr. Howard to review published studies that showed a link between increased risk of prostate cancer in 9/11 First Responders and exposure to World Trade Center toxins. As a result of his review, Dr. Howard made a recommendation that prostate cancer be added to the WTCHP.
Dr. Howard’s final decision on whether or not prostate cancer will be covered under the World Trade Center Health Program will be based on his examination of comments made under the published proposal. Should prostate cancer coverage receive approval, 9/11 First Responders or anyone who was exposed to World Trade Center toxins and debris, may be able to start receiving medical treatment for prostate cancer by late August of this year.
Please note that if you are currently suffering from prostate cancer and have not registered to the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund under the James Zadroga Act, you should do so immediately. As Special Master Sheila Birnbaum of the VCF has done before, we expect her to follow Dr. Howard’s lead and add prostate cancer to the list of eligible conditions for compensation awards from the VCF.
Should you need more information about 9/11 related cancers or whether or not you are eligible to register for the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund, feel free to call, click the live chat button or submit a request to be contacted at the top of this page.
Angela Luongo, a Paralegal with Turley, Hansen & Partners contributed to the writing of this post.