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THE NEWSLETTER OF THE BUREAU OF HEALTH SERVICES • COUNSELING SERVICES UNIT • FDNY
March 2005

What's new for March 2005

The New World Trade Center Medical Monitoring Program And Wellness/Fitness Initiative - A Joint Labor Management Initiative

FDNY Bureau of Health Services announces a NEW, revised World Trade Center Medical Monitoring Program. This joint labor management initiative was funded by the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and has the complete support of the UFA, UFOA and our EMS unions. They were instrumental in helping us obtain this funding and their representatives sit as full voting members on the WTC Medical Monitoring Steering Program. FDNY-BHS is partnering with Mt. Sinai and NIOSH to provide this program so that all first responders can benefit from our experience and receive the same medical evaluations. NIOSH funding will allow BHS to renovate our “annual” medical area, revise and update our medical monitoring protocols, questionnaires and procedures, and continue to offer our members the most comprehensive WTC Medical Monitoring Program. We will also be able to continue our WTC treatment program (respiratory and counseling) with help from various external philanthropic organizations, most notably the American Red Cross.

One month after the World Trade Center (WTC) was attacked FDNY’s BHS began WTC medical screenings. FDNY was the first group to initiate those screenings and that program served as a template for all other programs including the WTC Medical Screenings performed on “other responders” by the Mt. Sinai Medical Center Consortium. One of the reasons why BHS was able to institute this comprehensive medical screening program so quickly was that we already had a periodic “annual” medical evaluation to serve as a foundation. This comprehensive program was designed in 1997 as part of a joint-labor management initiative between FDNY, the UFA, the UFOA and the IAFF (International Association of Fire Fighters). BHS was the lead group in designing and implementing this Wellness / Fitness Initiative. It has since been adapted by the NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) as part of their “1582”, Comprehensive Occupational Medical Program for Fire Departments.

Our program will continue to provide a detailed approach to medical evaluations, tangible physical fitness goals, and job specific rehabilitation after injury/illness. Standards driven by this initiative include the medical evaluations of firefighters, fire officers and emergency medical services, occupational medical evaluations, occupational fitness evaluations and job specific rehabilitation. This program assists our members by providing them with the necessary tools to diagnose treatable disease(s) through early detection and enables us to identify issues and lifestyle changes that contribute to the health of our membership. Since its implementation, numerous members have benefited from the early diagnosis of heart disease, respiratory illness and cancer.

 

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The FDNY Bureau of Health Services wishes to remind our members, both active and retired, of the World Trade Center related health services that are currently available to them.

The NEW WTC Medical Monitoring Program has 3 component parts; Medical Screening and Monitoring, Treatment Program and Counseling Services. All services are free and confidential.

WTC Medical Monitoring Program:
The Bureau of Health Services continues to provide World Trade Center Medicals to all active members and to those retired members who were at the World Trade Center but who retired from FDNY after January 1, 1997. In the spring to summer of 2005, the Bureau of Health Services will start our new revised WTC Medical Monitoring Evaluation program. This will also be available to all members regardless of whether they are active or retired after January 1, 1997. The difference between our active members and our retired members is that active members will participate in this medical evaluation during paid work hours without scheduling an appointment and retired members will be asked to call 718 999-1858 to schedule an appointment. Retired members are reminded not to call until they receive a letter in Spring 2005 notifying them of appointment availabilities. Retired members who retired prior to January 1, 1997 should call the Mount Sinai program to find out if they are eligible for an appointment at their center (888- 702-0630).

WTC Treatment Program:
The Bureau of Health Services continues to offer medical care for WTC related respiratory problems. Again, the program is available to active and retired members at no charge. For respiratory appointments, members are asked to call 718 999-1934.

WTC Counseling Services:
WTC related mental health counseling services continue to be available free of charge to both active and retired members and their immediate families. The following are locations and telephone numbers to call for appointments:

(212) 570-1693 - Manhattan
(718) 352- 2140 - Ft. Totten, Qns
(631) 851- 6888 - Brentwood, LI
(845) 695- 1029 - Orange County
(718) 815- 4111 - Staten Island

Look for updates on future issues of ‘Health Connections’ and on the Department intranet.

 

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Support Group For Separated & Divorcing Members

A 10-Session Program for FDNY Employees
Wednesdays, March 9 – May 11, 2005
11:30 am – 1:00 pm
CSU-Manhattan, 251 Lafayette Street, 3rd Floor

This group is open to all active and retired FDNY employees currently in the process of separating or divorcing. The focus of the group is on how to rebuild your life after a relationship ends. The group will learn specific “building blocks” each week in order to help the individual cope and accept the realities of a separation/divorce.

Please contact Tim Dunnigan at 212-570-1693
if you are interested in joining the support group for separated and divorcing men.

Community Connections

To assist our FDNY family down the roadmap to health, the Counseling Unit has developed a new program called ‘Community Connections’. This program has been designed to help all members of FDNY and their families improve health, wellness and quality of life through educational workshops, wellness services and social services. The Counseling Unit is looking for any suggestions to make this program a success. If you would like to offer feedback or questions, please direct them to Lynn Walker at 212 570-1693 or email her at walkerl@fdny.nyc.gov.

 

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Dr. Kerry Kelly
Chief Medical Officer

Dr. David Prezant
Deputy Chief Medical Officer

Malachy Corrigan
Director, FDNY CSU

Mary T. McLaughlin
Director, FDNY BHS


 

 

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