Ten Years Later: The September 11 Attacks
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James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act (January 2, 2011) [Excerpts]

On February 4, 2009, Representative Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) introduced HR 847, also known as the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act. The bill is named for New York City police officer James Zadroga, who died on January 5, 2006, from respiratory illness that many believe was caused by his exposure to harmful chemicals and debris during rescue and recovery operations at Ground Zero after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. The bill, which won final approval from Congress on December 22, 2010, will provide $4.2 billion in medical care to first responders, cleanup workers, and New York City residents exposed to toxins caused by the destruction of the World Trade Center. The bill was signed into law by President Barack Obama on January 2, 2011.


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TITLE I—WORLD TRADE CENTER HEALTH PROGRAM

SEC. 101. WORLD TRADE CENTER HEALTH PROGRAM.

The Public Health Service Act is amended by adding at the end the following new title:

TITLE XXXIII—WORLD TRADE CENTER HEALTH PROGRAM

Subtitle A—Establishment of Program; Advisory Committee

SEC. 3301. ESTABLISHMENT OF WORLD TRADE CENTER HEALTH PROGRAM.

(a) In General- There is hereby established within the Department of Health and Human Services a program to be known as the World Trade Center Health Program, which shall be administered by the WTC Program Administrator, to provide beginning on July 1, 2011—

(1) medical monitoring and treatment benefits to eligible emergency responders and recovery and cleanup workers (including those who are Federal employees) who responded to the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks; and

(2) initial health evaluation, monitoring, and treatment benefits to residents and other building occupants and area workers in New York City who were directly impacted and adversely affected by such attacks.

(b) Components of Program- The WTC Program includes the following components:

(1) MEDICAL MONITORING FOR RESPONDERS- Medical monitoring under section 3311, including clinical examinations and long-term health monitoring and analysis for enrolled WTC responders who were likely to have been exposed to airborne toxins that were released, or to other hazards, as a result of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

(2) INITIAL HEALTH EVALUATION FOR SURVIVORS- An initial health evaluation under section 3321, including an evaluation to determine eligibility for followup monitoring and treatment.

(3) FOLLOWUP MONITORING AND TREATMENT FOR WTC-RELATED HEALTH CONDITIONS FOR RESPONDERS AND SURVIVORS- Provision under sections 3312, 3322, and 3323 of followup monitoring and treatment and payment, subject to the provisions of subsection (d), for all medically necessary health and mental health care expenses of an individual with respect to a WTC-related health condition (including necessary prescription drugs).

(4) OUTREACH- Establishment under section 3303 of an education and outreach program to potentially eligible individuals concerning the benefits under this title.

(5) CLINICAL DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS- Collection and analysis under section 3304 of health and mental health data relating to individuals receiving monitoring or treatment benefits in a uniform manner in collaboration with the collection of epidemiological data under section 3342.

(6) RESEARCH ON HEALTH CONDITIONS- Establishment under subtitle C of a research program on health conditions resulting from the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

(c) No Cost Sharing- Monitoring and treatment benefits and initial health evaluation benefits are provided under subtitle B without any deductibles, copayments, or other cost sharing to an enrolled WTC responder or certified-eligible WTC survivor. Initial health evaluation benefits are provided under subtitle B without any deductibles, copayments, or other cost sharing to a screening-eligible WTC survivor.

(d) Preventing Fraud and Unreasonable Administrative Costs-

(1) FRAUD- The Inspector General of the Department of Health and Human Services shall develop and implement a program to review the WTC Program's health care expenditures to detect fraudulent or duplicate billing and payment for inappropriate services. This title is a Federal health care program (as defined in section 1128B(f) of the Social Security Act) and is a health plan (as defined in section 1128C(c) of such Act) for purposes of applying sections 1128 through 1128E of such Act.

(2) UNREASONABLE ADMINISTRATIVE COSTS- The Inspector General of the Department of Health and Human Services shall develop and implement a program to review the WTC Program for unreasonable administrative costs, including with respect to infrastructure, administration, and claims processing.

(e) Quality Assurance- The WTC Program Administrator working with the Clinical Centers of Excellence shall develop and implement a quality assurance program for the monitoring and treatment delivered by such Centers of Excellence and any other participating health care providers. Such program shall include—

(1) adherence to monitoring and treatment protocols;

(2) appropriate diagnostic and treatment referrals for participants;

(3) prompt communication of test results to participants; and

(4) such other elements as the Administrator specifies in consultation with the Clinical Centers of Excellence.

(f) Annual Program Report-

(1) IN GENERAL- Not later than 6 months after the end of each fiscal year in which the WTC Program is in operation, the WTC Program Administrator shall submit an annual report to the Congress on the operations of this title for such fiscal year and for the entire period of operation of the program.

(2) CONTENTS INCLUDED IN REPORT- Each annual report under paragraph (1) shall include at least the following:

(A) ELIGIBLE INDIVIDUALS- Information for each clinical program described in paragraph (3)—

(i) on the number of individuals who applied for certification under subtitle B and the number of such individuals who were so certified;

(ii) of the individuals who were certified, on the number who received monitoring under the program and the number of such individuals who received medical treatment under the program;

(iii) with respect to individuals so certified who received such treatment, on the WTC-related health conditions for which they were treated; and

(iv) on the projected number of individuals who will be certified under subtitle B in the succeeding fiscal year and the succeeding 10-year period.

(B) MONITORING, INITIAL HEALTH EVALUATION, AND TREATMENT COSTS- For each clinical program so described—

(i) information on the costs of monitoring and initial health evaluation and the costs of treatment and on the estimated costs of such monitoring, evaluation, and treatment in the succeeding fiscal year; and

(ii) an estimate of the cost of medical treatment for WTC-related health conditions that have been paid for or reimbursed by workers' compensation, by public or private health plans, or by New York City under section 3331.

(C) ADMINISTRATIVE COSTS- Information on the cost of administering the program, including costs of program support, data collection and analysis, and research conducted under the program.

(D) ADMINISTRATIVE EXPERIENCE- Information on the administrative performance of the program, including—

(i) the performance of the program in providing timely evaluation of and treatment to eligible individuals; and

(ii) a list of the Clinical Centers of Excellence and other providers that are participating in the program.

(E) SCIENTIFIC REPORTS- A summary of the findings of any new scientific reports or studies on the health effects associated with exposure described in section 3306(1), including the findings of research conducted under section 3341(a).

(F) ADVISORY COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATIONS- A list of recommendations by the WTC Scientific/Technical Advisory Committee on additional WTC Program eligibility criteria and on additional WTC-related health conditions and the action of the WTC Program Administrator concerning each such recommendation.

(3) SEPARATE CLINICAL PROGRAMS DESCRIBED- In paragraph (2), each of the following shall be treated as a separate clinical program of the WTC Program:

(A) FIREFIGHTERS AND RELATED PERSONNEL- The benefits provided for enrolled WTC responders described in section 3311(a)(2)(A).

(B) OTHER WTC RESPONDERS- The benefits provided for enrolled WTC responders not described in subparagraph (A).

(C) WTC SURVIVORS- The benefits provided for screening-eligible WTC survivors and certified-eligible WTC survivors in section 3321(a).

(g) Notification to Congress Upon Reaching 80 Percent of Eligibility Numerical Limits- The Secretary shall promptly notify the Congress of each of the following:

(1) When the number of enrollments of WTC responders subject to the limit established under section 3311(a)(4) has reached 80 percent of such limit.

(2) When the number of certifications for certified-eligible WTC survivors subject to the limit established under section 3321(a)(3) has reached 80 percent of such limit.

(h) Consultation- The WTC Program Administrator shall engage in ongoing outreach and consultation with relevant stakeholders, including the WTC Health Program Steering Committees and the Advisory Committee under section 3302, regarding the implementation and improvement of programs under this title.

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