The official number of deaths resulting from the infamous 9/11/2001 attacks stands at 2,996. But by the middle of this century, that number could as much as double.
That’s because more than 2,500 of the workers who helped in the crucial moments and months following the World Trade Center attacks have cancer.
The new total represents a substantial jump from the previously reported 1,140 cases and could rise even more. It is being gleaned from the 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund and the World Trade Center Health Program as opposed to those who have visited private doctors.
According to the New York Post…the World Trade Center Health Program at Mount Sinai Hospital counts 1,655 responders with cancer among the 37,000 cops, hard hats, sanitation workers, and other city employees and volunteers it monitors. The tragic sum rises to 2,518 when firefighters and EMTs are added.
The Fire Department of New York, which has its own World Trade Center health program, said Friday it counts 863 members with cancers certified for 9/11-related treatment.
What’s worse, many of those looking for assistance have experienced major delays, a situation that can only become more grave as the number of people in need grows.
As of June 30th, the Victims Compensation Fund (VCF) had received 1,145 cancer claims, of which 881 were deemed eligible for compensation. The rest are under review. And to date, only 115 claimants have been awarded $50.5 million in settlements ranging from $400,000 to $4.1 million.
When Congress originally set up the VCF it was funded with $2.8 billion. The VCF has not released figures on how many people have died from cancer throughout the process.
Even the lucky few who have settled with the VCF are in a holding pattern. VCF recipients get 10 percent of their settlement immediately but must wait until 2016 to receive the rest.
The true extent of the 9/11-related health damage may finally come to light this fall. An October 12th deadline to file cancer claims with the VCF is rapidly approaching:
Important Information on the October 12, 2014 VCF Registration Deadline
Claimants diagnosed on or before October 12, 2012 with one of the cancers added to the list of eligible conditions on that date must register with the Fund by October 12, 2014.
Registration preserves your right to file a claim in the future (before the VCF ends on October 3, 2016). Registration is NOT the same as filing a claim and you are not required to file a claim even if you have registered. Visit http://vcf.org for more information.