VCF Releases Second Annual Report

November 22, 2013

Nearly 50,000 people registered with the September 11 Victim Compensation (VCF) prior to a critical October 3, 2013 deadline according to its second annual report. “The primary focus for our third year will be expediting the claims review process and providing initial payments to clients,” writes VCF Special Master Sheila Birnbaum in her summary. VCF registration remains open to individuals with WTC-related physical health problems who meet certain conditions.
Download the Report (PDF)

New York State Extends WTC Deadlines

November 21, 2013

Governor Cuomo signed legislation in November that affects workers compensation and disability retirement benefits for workers who participated in WTC rescue and recovery operations. Filing deadlines for both entitlements have been extended until September 11, 2014, and eligibility has been expanded for certain categories of workers.
Read more

New Registry Study Identifies Increased Risk of Heart Disease

November 14, 2013

Rescue/recovery workers who were highly exposed to the World Trade Center (WTC) disaster and people who developed WTC-related posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) may be hospitalized more often for cardiovascular disease, according to a new study from the WTC Health Registry published by the Journal of the American Heart Association.

Researchers linked data for 46,346 Registry enrollees living in New York State to a state hospital-discharge reporting system that records medical diagnoses. They found 1,151 heart disease (including hardening of the arteries and heart attack) and 284 stroke-related hospitalizations occurring in 2003-2010. Male rescue/recovery workers with high levels of WTC exposure were at 82% higher risk for heart disease hospitalization compared to those with low levels of exposure; women who had PTSD symptoms when they enrolled in the Registry faced a 32% higher risk compared to women without PTSD symptoms. Men with PTSD at enrollment were at a 53% higher risk of hospitalization due to stroke compared with men without PTSD.

Two earlier Registry studies based on self-reported cardiovascular disease diagnoses suggested a similar association.

WTC Health Program Adds Prostate Cancer

September 19, 2013

The federal government added prostate cancer to the list of conditions that can be treated by the WTC Health Program. Coverage begins October 21.
Read the final rule (PDF)

NYC Builds Awareness of Zadroga Act Programs

September 16, 2013

As the October 3 deadline for most people to register for the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund nears, New York City is undertaking numerous efforts to build awareness of the programs established by the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act.

Mayor Bloomberg sent an e-mail to all City employees reminding them of the VCF deadline. New York City Housing Authority residents, WTC Health Registry enrollees, taxi passengers and 311 callers are receiving similar reminders. The Department of Education sent principals of public schools information to share with parents of 9/11 affected children. In most cases, these communications also included information about the WTC Health Program and were supported by website postings and social media.

In July, Mayor Bloomberg sent a letter (PDF) about the VCF and the WTC Health Program to leaders around the nation who sent responders to help New York City after the 2001 terrorist attacks.

NYC Reminds Local Leaders of WTC Services, Deadlines for 9/11 Responders

July 22, 2013

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg sent letters (PDF) in July to dozens of mayors and local leaders around the US whose constituents assisted NYC after 9/11 reminding them of the World Trade Center health services available and the October 3 deadline for most people to register for the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund (VCF).

“As we approach the 12th anniversary of 9/11, many of those who survived the attacks and responded to them may now be facing health effects from their time at the World Trade Center,” Bloomberg writes. “Together with our congressional delegation, New York City worked for many years to convince the federal government to respond to these issues. In 2010, we succeeded, and Congress passed the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act.”

The letter includes a flyer describing the WTC Health Program and the VCF.

Federal Government Proposes Adding Prostate Cancer Treatment for WTC Responders, Survivors

July 1, 2013

The federal government has proposed adding prostate cancer to the list of conditions that can be treated by the WTC Health Program. However, screening for prostate cancer will not be covered under the proposal. The public may comment on the proposed rule until August 1.
Read the proposed rule
Comment on the proposed rule

City Council Hearing Examines Cancer Among WTC Responders

June 17, 2013

Representatives from the Health and Fire Departments, and the Mount Sinai Icahn School of Medicine as well as community and labor advocates testified at a New York City Council hearing in June that asked the question “Are cancer rates increasing among 9/11 responders?”

The physicians who testified agreed it was still too soon for research to definitively answer the question and stressed the importance of close monitoring for all WTC-exposed individuals. Advocates pressed the City Council to support the re-authorization of the federal Zadroga Act which provides monitoring , treatment and compensation for WTC-related health problems through 2015.
Read Health Department testimony (PDF)
Read Fire Department testimony (PDF)

WTC Health Registry Surveys Impact of Hurricane Sandy on Enrollees

April 11, 2013

The WTC Health Registry is surveying the impact of Hurricane Sandy, a second major disaster, on the physical and mental health of Registry enrollees. The survey was sent in April to approximately 4,500 enrollees who lived in flood zones and to an equal number of enrollees who didn’t.
More information about the survey

Deadline to Register for VCF Nears

March 15, 2013

By law, WTC-exposed individuals who plan to file a claim with the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund (VFC) and who knew (or reasonably should have known) that they had a WTC-related physical health condition as of October 3, 2011 must register online by October 3, 2013. Special circumstances (PDF) apply to people with WTC-related cancer who have longer to register.

Even if you already are enrolled in either the WTC Health Program or the WTC Health Registry, you should register in the VCF if you wish to be compensated for any WTC-related physical injuries. The VCF is a completely separate program administered by the US Department of Justice.

WTC-exposed individuals who didn’t know as of October 3, 2011 that they had a physical health condition related to their exposure must register within 2 years of the date they learned or reasonably should have known this information for the first time.

As long as you register within the relevant two-year window, you can submit your eligibility form online at any time through October 3, 2016.
Frequently Asked Questions

New WTC Clinic for Responders Opens in Queens

March 11, 2013

A new clinic for workers and volunteers who participated in WTC rescue and recovery operations has opened in Rego Park, Queens. Funded with $3.85 million from the WTC Health Program, the new North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System facility replaces a smaller clinic in Flushing.
Find a WTC clinic

WTC Health Registry Helps Enrollees Establish VCF Eligibility

January 14, 2013

The WTC Health Registry and the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) are working together to ensure that survey responses from Registry enrollees can be submitted to the VCF as partial evidence of eligibility. Responses from the Registry’s 2003-2004 survey may be useful because they can offer more contemporary information on 9/11-related exposures than otherwise might be available more than 11 years later.

Because survey responses are protected by federal confidentiality laws, WTC Health Registry enrollees must first give their permission to release them to the VCF. The WTC Health Registry and the VCF have a process in place to facilitate this, and to ensure that individuals who may have forgotten they enrolled in the Registry, but who have VCF filed claims, are reminded.