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Friday, September 25, 2009

NY Opens 1 Year Window for 9/11 Claims

NY Governor David A. Patterson has signed into law a bill that permits otherwise time-barred claims against NY municipalities arising out of terrorist activities that occurred on September 11, 2001.

The City of NY just released the 2009 Annual Report concerning the health consequences of the 9/11 attack. The report concludes:

"Results from large epidemiologic studies suggest that probable posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is the most common WTC-related health condition among exposed adults. Probable PTSD means that individuals scored above a certain threshold when responding to a mental health screening questionnaire but have not undergone the psychiatric interview necessary to confirm the diagnosis.

I The risk for developing probable PTSD was higher among those who were:

• Caught in the dust cloud released by the buildings as they collapsed

• Injured as a result of the attacks

• Directly exposed to the events of 9/11, including proximity to the WTC site, witnessing horrific events and knowing someone who was killed or injured in the attacks

• Among rescue and recovery workers, working at the WTC site for a long time or doing tasks outside of their trained area of expertise.

I Several studies indicated that respiratory symptoms, sinus problems, asthma, and loss of lung function were found in people or reported by some who were exposed to WTC dust, including rescue and recovery workers, residents and evacuees. Other studies have suggested that risk of developing sarcoidosis (an inflammation that usually affects the lungs) was elevated in the first few years after the event. Many exposed adults were also diagnosed with or reported having heartburn, acid reflux or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), often in conjunction with other respiratory or mental health symptoms. GERD is a common condition among the general population, however; further research is needed to understand the association between GERD, WTC exposure and other WTC-related health conditions.

I The risk for developing respiratory problems has been examined most thoroughly among rescue, recovery and clean-up workers, and was increased among those who:

• Arrived early at the WTC site • Worked at the WTC site for long periods of time.

I Few studies addressed the impact of WTC exposure on child and adolescent health, especially physical health.

I Whether there is a relationship between WTC exposure and other longer-term illnesses, including cancer, is unknown but clinicians, epidemiologists and other researchers are actively studying this. They also are studying the relationship between WTC exposure and mortality.

I At the time of the report’s publication last year, treatment for WTC-related conditions was available for exposed groups, including children and adolescents, in the NewYork City area."

For additional information on 9/11 Compensation click here.

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