The World Trade Center bombing has had a profound affect on people and their health. Anyone directly exposed to the disaster is at risk for a large number of health problems including lung disease, post traumatic stress disorder and cancer. Sometimes these illnesses don’t surface immediately, so you are still at risk even if you feel fine now. The government has set up a special program that provides free treatment, monitoring, and resources to help people deal with the lasting effects of the disaster.
What Groups Are Eligible For The WTC Health Program?
If you were a firefighter and on the scene of the disaster for one or more days you are eligible. Survivors of firefighters who were killed are also eligible. People who worked or volunteered on the site, police officers, and morgue workers who were exposed to the site are also eligible. Survivors of the attack are eligible as well. Take a look at victim compensation fund.
How Do You Enroll In The Program?
No matter where you are currently living, if you were directly exposed to the disaster area for any length of time, you are eligible for a medical evaluation. During this exam, you will be screened for disaster related conditions and you will receive certification that shows your illness was related to 9/11. You can then enroll in the WTC Health Program to receive free treatment and monitoring.
How Do You Enroll In The Health Program?
Once you have your certification from your doctor, you can download the forms from the WTC Health Program website. You will need to send in a copy of your certification and other documents that proved where you lived during the time. After you have your documents, just send in the paperwork.
What Services Can You Receive?
Once you are enrolled in the program you are eligible to receive free medical treatment and monitoring of your 9/11 related conditions. The program also collects data in order to study the long term effects of the attack. It doesn’t matter where you live, and you don’t have to live in New York to receive treatment. There are health networks set up all of the country to ensure you are covered.
Are Mental Health Issues Covered?
Many people exposed to the disaster have experienced and continue to experience Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. This can cause long term stress and anxiety in people and a recent study shows that people are still experiencing symptoms to this day. Mental health issues are covered by the program.
What Other Health Issues Are People Experiencing?
Being exposed to the disaster can do everything from raising your risk of cancer to giving you lung disease. Many survivors have reported lung inflammation, trouble breathing and asthma. Heart disease is more likely as well.
If you were exposed to the WTC disaster and haven’t enrolled in the health program yet, it isn’t too late. Get the medical care you need today.