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9/11 Related Autoimmune Diseases: Still No Coverage

A few months ago, we reported on a study, published by Arthritis and Rheumatology, which showed that 9/11 rescue and recovery workers are 13% more likely to develop an autoimmune disorder—most commonly rheumatoid arthritis—for each month he or she worked on the pile. To read our coverage of this information click here. Since that time, the CDC has made two unfavorable decisions for those 9/11 responders, workers and residents who are living with 9/11 related autoimmune diseases: both decisions stated that there was not enough evidence tying ground zero exposure to the development of autoimmune diseases.

Why Won’t the CDC Recognize 9/11 Related Autoimmune Diseases?

Petitions to the CDC requesting the inclusion of 9/11 related autoimmune diseases continue. Studies clearly indicate that exposure to “metal, ozone and hydrocarbons” is associated with the development of autoimmune diseases. In fact, the likelihood of developing these diseases increases threefold for workers who stayed on the ground zero pile for the full 10 months. Why then is there such a reticence to cover these individuals and provide them with medical care and compensation from the 9/11 VCF?  Indeed, several clients from our firm have autoimmune diseases that cause them a great deal of pain and suffering and are baffled that these issues are not also addressed and covered by the Zadroga Act.

Is it because the Zadroga Act is expiring and with its expiration the World Trade Center Health Program will shut down this year if the Act is not extended?

This process reminds of that time period before about 60 cancers were added to the list of 9/11 related conditions in 2012. Maybe it’s only a matter of time before the right amount of evidence convinces the CDC and NIOSH that these conditions should be covered. We will keep you posted!

Do you or someone you love suffer from a 9/11 related condition or cancer? Have you registered with the VCF and submitted all of the necessary materials? If you need help call us now for a free case consultation or send us your information here.


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