Rutgers Experts Available to Speak on the Continued Health Risks Faced by First Responders Ahead of 9/11 Anniversary
New Brunswick, N.J., September 9 – Rutgers University public health researchers who studied the long-term health risks facing rescue workers who responded to the Sept. 11, 2001 attack on the World Trade Center, are available to comment on their ongoing health effects, including a heightened risk of head and neck cancer.
“In the wake of the WTC attacks on 9/11, tens of thousands of people worked in the rescue, recovery and cleanup response. This included first responders like firefighters, police, and EMTs, but also often people doing the less often seen work of construction, transportation and compunction. These workers and volunteers were exposed to a uniquely and extremely hazardous environment. As a result, many have endured health impacts. Even now, over 20 years later, new WTC-health impacts are emerging including cancer and heart disease. This highlights the importance of long-term health monitoring of survivors of disasters,” said Judith Graber, associate professor at the Rutgers School of Public Health.
“Rutgers’ World Trade Center Clinical Center of Excellence is developing a risk factor profile to better detect individual 9/11 responders’ specific health risks – which varies depending on when the worker responded to the site, the type of work they did at the site, and how long they were there – and is being designed to improve their treatment outcomes. Our work continues to inform healthcare decisions for hundreds of those who put their safety at risk at the country’s time of great need,” said Iris Udasin, professor and director of the Rutgers Clinical Center of Excellence for World Trade Center Responders.
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