Air Today . . . Gone Tomorrow Article

Assemblyman Labriola Announces World Trade Center Medical Screening Program
Farmingdale Observer, September 6, 2002

New York State Assemblyman Steve Labriola recently announced that the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, (NIOSH) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have dedicated funding to begin to provide medical screenings to workers and volunteers who were at the World Trade Center and surrounding areas following the September 11 terrorist attack. "This funding enables us to offer free, comprehensive, medical examinations for Long Islanders who selflessly answered our nation's cry for help and risked their own health in the process," commented Labriola.

Information developed from workers already examined suggests that many people who worked at these sites have developed health problems particularly of the lungs, nasal passages and sinuses. As a result, examination sites have been identified in both Nassau and Suffolk Counties. The Long Island facilities expected to participate include Winthrop University Hospital, Nassau University Medical Center, SUNY Stony Brook Internists in Islandia, The Workers' Wellness Center of Hauppauge and the LIOEHC clinic site at John T. Mather Memorial Hospital. Hours of operation will include both evening and weekend hours in addition to normal daytime hours.

The current program funding addresses acute problems associated with exposures, however long-term health problems and follow-up care are not addressed in this round of examinations. The anticipated medical examination will include:
1. A detailed occupational history and past medical history;

2. A careful review of the area and times that each examinee worked, directly in or in the vicinity of Ground Zero and the Fresh Kill landfill;

3. A review of the examinees' current symptoms, including any previous medical workups;

4. A screening questionnaire focusing on psychological stress;

5. A comprehensive physical examination;

6. Blood tests for determining kidney and liver function;

7. Breathing tests;

8. Chest X-rays as needed.

Certified physicians and other certified medical providers as well as social workers, and certified industrial hygienists will be available to address concerns pertinent to their specialties.

Participants will be notified of examination and test results. If medical follow-up is necessary, appropriate appointments will be arranged or participants may choose their own physicians.

It is imperative that all Long Islanders eligible call 1-888-702-0630 to register as soon as possible to obtain any additional enrollment information. "I urge all individuals who believe they may have been affected to call today for further enrollment information. There is no cost," concluded Labriola.


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