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Friday, October 22nd, 2021

Funds target World Trade Center health program for first responders

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U.S. Rep. Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) is touting the inclusion of $2.86 billion for the 9/11 World Trade Center (WTC) Health Program in the Build Back Better Act.

Officials said the funds would be included in the Energy and Commerce Committee’s portion of the measure, which is slated to be marked up this week.

“This funding is essential to ensuring that we fulfill our obligation to the individuals who require medical care,” Pallone said. “We can never fully repay the debt of gratitude we owe to responders and survivors, but we can make sure that we do all we can to make sure they have access to the medical care they rightfully deserve. We will never forget the sacrifices they have made in service to our nation.”

The 9/11 World Trade Center (WTC) Health Program provides zero cost medical monitoring and treatment for certified WTC-related health conditions for those directly impacted by the 9/11 attacks in New York, the Pentagon and Shanksville, Pennsylvania.

Officials acknowledged that while the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has estimated the program would face a projected funding shortfall in four years, the bill addresses the shortage and provides stability for over 110,000 individuals dependent on the program. This funding would also cover the 10 percent that New York City currently pays for this program.