Wednesday, September 06, 2006

9/11 Illness


After reading Illness Persisting in 9/11 Workers, Big Study Finds write a brief reflection. How has money played a role in the care of 9/11 cleanup victims? Who is at fault for the illness? What chages in finance need to be made to correct the problem? Is healthcare a federal, city or individual responsibility?

If you would like to read a follow up article just published on the imes website before you write click here.

Stanley also linked a more controversial article on the same topic from the NY POST.

22 comments:

Jason Sophie said...

I liked the discussion that we had today in government class. It was hard for me to take a side on weather or not the volunteer workers of the terrorist attacks aftermath should get money to pay for their health expenses. Hearing different peoples thoughts, i came to conclusion that these volunteers/heroes should get credit for all of the work that they put in, but i do not think that our government can afford to pay for all of the peoples costs. Although, i can't imagine looking at someones family member, or even that person themself in pain, and then telling them that they dont deserve to be re-paid for all the hard work that they voluntairly did. In the end, i think that the government unfortunately can not afford to pay for everyones madeical expenses for many reasons. (how do we know who was actually there? and who was actually affected?) Also, what if there is another attack?
i thought that the article was written well, and i think it sparked an interesting conversation today in government

Stanley said...

To ponder about the billing for the health insurance of all those workers is as ambiguous as asking when will the war in Iraq end? But there is no doubt that there is someone to blame for this tragedy. I can see the antithesis in where someone would stand, but it would be morally wrong to ignore the aid of countless workers. In short, one would give aid to first responders and firefighters than reject them. I would not blame anybody for the illness, for no one knows for sure what problems will follow in the aftermath, however, it is the city to blame for insurance coverage and all that follows. As stated by this site: http://www.nypost.com/news/regionalnews/9_11_benefits_mean_cut__bloomy_fumes_regionalnews_carl_campanile_and_david_seifman.htm, the new laws that follow will insure first responders for better pension and health aid.

nadia said...

I have to agree with Jason, that today’s article brought up some controversial thoughts and I also think that it is hard to come to a decision on who is responsible for this striking illness. I do feel that if you volunteered, it was your own choice to make. Then again, these people should get reinforced for their heroic act. I do feel that if the government did not get involved in outside affairs, this might not have happened. It’s pretty unjust that the government has enough money to send troops of to Iraq but not enough to solve their own issues. As for changes in finance, it may be wise to eradicate unnecessary things that are being done by the government.

Peter said...

Money always has and always will play a major role in the care of 9/11 cleanup victims. With ought money you can’t really do much. The reason why their even is a discussion is because no one knows whose going to pay the health bills for the people that volunteered to help and the people whose actual duty is to save people. If there was a lot of money then there wouldn’t be a problem, but since the rescuers aren’t 90 years old the government can’t afford to pay for all the people that went in and rescued. I don’t think that you can really put the blame on one single person because more than one person was at fault, so you can’t single-handedly finger point anyone, but you can put certain people as scapegoats. So in conclusion just blame the world.

zilber said.... said...

I beleive that the volunteer workers of 9-11 should not recieve any medical coverage by the government for any illness that might have been originated from ground zero. It does not state anywhere in the constitution about that we have to give sick people money. Its just one of the many bennifits that the land of the free and home of the brave offer. It sounds mean and disrespectful to turn away your own citizens from medical attention, but they went in on their own free will, and will have to pay the same way.
As sophie says theres no way of telling who was actually there. 1000s of volunteers equals million of dollars that our government cannot afford.

tRisha said...

The discussion we had about the volunteer workers, who helped at Ground Zero was interesting and it brought up many controversial ideas. The countless number of volunteers who took out their time to help during time of tragedy deserve to be treated in their time of crisis. I understand it was their choice to help the city but it was definitely not their choice to be become ill. The government says they cannot provide the funds to treat the ill workers of 9/11 but I believe that the volunteer workers have the right to demand the funds from their country. As Nadia says, the government has millions of dollars to spark war with Iraq and help them establish some sort of authority but not enough to serve the needs of its dedicated citizens of America. We practically run fundraisers for everything since kindergarten and maybe a solution to cure the ill workers could be a huge fundraiser established by the city or state government. It is morally wrong to overlook the condition of our volunteer workers in need and instead we should thank them by providing them with helpful health insurance. These workers were kind enough to give us their all and even put their life in risk. As a city we need to come together to save those who saved us in our time of grief.

Devil's Advocate said...

Trisha writes about "morality". Does the US government have a responsibility to be moral? Wouldn't a "fund raiser" admit the federal government has no obligation to these people? Where in the Constitution does it say I have to give part of my paycheck to care for people who put themselves in harms way? This is a tradgey, the volunteers who are sick are victims and should be included in a memorial if it is ever built; but I am still unsure about federal,state or city dollars being doled out to take care of these people.

Diana said...

After the discussion that we had in class it was brought to my attention how serious the after math of 9/11 and the health of volunteers were. Basically the entire issue is on who will pay for these volunteers health care since the air after 9/11 was so polluted that it caused them serious health issues. Throught the article there were many ideas on who shoudl pay the bills and how serious the case is. After reading the ideas I believe that the federal government should pay for these people health care because they did risk there lives going down there to help the country in a time of need and the government did state that air was cleaned to get more volunteers to help. I really don't think its anyone's fault for all the people who are sick because if they did not come out to help then who would have? Since I believe that the federal government should pay for this then there will obviously need to be a cut back somewhere or from many things but I don't think that it should come from somewhere that would hurt or disturb everyone's life.

Richard said...

I belive that the work's should get some money to help them pay for the health benifits.The fireman sould get the health benifits fully paid for because they had to be there. The volunteer's should get some money. The people should be lucky that they didn't die while they were there.

Corrie said...

By reading this article I have come across many interesting thoughts and ideas from both opposing sides of the issue, and I agree with giving 9/11 victims medical coverage to treat the illnesses caused by the toxic dust that came from the towers. Each victim/ hero deserves medical coverage because they risked their own life to save innocent people at a time of need. Leaving these victims out in the cold is wrong. You might say “well they volunteered to go down there they knew the consequences.” But if they didn’t then who would. But the main concern is who is going pay all the expenses because no one has the money for all those people. But if you can find money to fly all the way to Iraq and fight a nonsense war you can most definitely find money to treat ill people.

Superfly said...

Setting an Example:
joanna vogel

Based on the article Illness Persisting in 9/11 Workers, Big Study Finds, published by the N.Y. Times on the sixth of November, there are more people than ever coming forward with medical symptoms in connection with the inhalation of toxic dust produced following terrorist attacks of September Eleventh, two thousand one. According to the article, at least forty percent of the volunteers (seventy percent of which arrived at the scene between the eleventh and the thirteenth of September) were, and are, without health insurance. The number of those afflicted currently without health insurance has risen since that date as well, due to almost unfathomable losses of jobs for those too sick to work. The article quotes Dr. Robert Herbert, of Mount Sinai Hospital: “Our patients are sick, and they will need ongoing care for the rest of their lives.”
Currently there is a grand debate volleying about through the government as to whether or not these volunteers deserve free medical attention or not and, if so, who pays for it? As of yet, no one is really willing to accept the monumental responsibility of securing funds for so many people. Though there is an agreement in the city (barring Mayor M. Bloomberg’s strange sounding statement, which questioned the findings of the study: “Statistics could suggest a connection between events, but not prove a direct link.”) that the federal government should supply funds in order to treat these heroes. The federal government, however, feels that it is sufficient to fork over fifty-two million dollars when the needs of the people affected will easily exceed the billion dollar mark. This is not a tragedy that affects only New York City, it affects the entire country and the city should not be left without more substantial federal assistance.
This writer wonders how the Bush administration can take this tragedy, use the sacrifice of hundreds of good people to lie to the American public in order to trot off and wage a war in the Middle East, and then not take care of its own. They are magically able to produce monies that do not affect the monstrous deficit to kill people, but they cannot scrape together money to keep the American volunteers alive.
What type of example do these actions set? In a country based on volunteers and camaraderie, the government is going place a quarter in the cup of well over ten thousand sick and dying volunteers and workers and continue on its way? G-d forbid anyone should become stricken on the president’s doorstep, he might hit you when he slams the door.

Sigi said...

9/11 being a tragic it self has left a scar in many of our hearts. But now the scar seems to be deeper. Many people who went out of their way to volunteer at ground zero left as heroes. But this heroic act had lead them danger their health issues. The dust from the world trade center had created many diseases for the people who worked at ground zero. This is not the only issue occurring. The federal government is pointed fingers to pay for the health care of the ill heroes. The question that is arising is who is responsible for the health care. In life when we do things we shouldn’t expect something back. When we make individual decisions our life is at our own risk. A hero is honorable title because he or she has sacrificed something. I don’t think that the government has to pay for the health care solely for the reason they volunteered and not paying attention to the pollution in the air. The government would like to support the heroes but we just don’t have money right now.
I agree with Jason on how this article sparked everyone’s interest. I had my own strong opinion as well as other students.

Sigi said...

9/11 being a tragic it self has left a scar in many of our hearts. But now the scar seems to be deeper. Many people who went out of their way to volunteer at ground zero left as heroes. But this heroic act had lead them danger their health issues. The dust from the world trade center had created many diseases for the people who worked at ground zero. This is not the only issue occurring. The federal government is pointed fingers to pay for the health care of the ill heroes. The question that is arising is who is responsible for the health care. In life when we do things we shouldn’t expect something back. When we make individual decisions our life is at our own risk. A hero is honorable title because he or she has sacrificed something. I don’t think that the government has to pay for the health care solely for the reason they volunteered and not paying attention to the pollution in the air. The government would like to support the heroes but we just don’t have money right now.
I agree with Jason on how this article sparked everyone’s interest. I had my own strong opinion as well as other students.

Michael L said...

I believe that everybody who went down to help at Ground Zero should receive some type of financial compensation from the government. This includes the rescue workers and the volunteers. However, some people in class said that the volunteers who went down to Ground Zero shouldn’t receive anything because they “volunteered” and knew the risks of going down there. But if they did not go down there, many more lives could have been lost. How can the government ignore the people who out of the kindness of their heart, went down to help the victims of this atrocious terrorist attack? The volunteers that went down to Ground Zero didn’t receive any money to begin with, so they at least deserve money to pay for their medical bills.

bulka said...

The discussion in class was good. I dont think any of the volunteer workers of 9/11 should recieve any money. It was there choice to help, nobody pushed them in and made them do anything. They did everything on there own free will and should have used there head and thought about the consequences of such work, THE END. I understand people are sick but thats not the governments problem.

W Brown said...

Anything after this would be Late

Giovanni Aller said...

In class we were discussing about whose fault it was that the people of New York City got an illness. I believe that the city should help the people with the serious illnesses because some people do not have insurance. The people that volunteered to help look for survivors, they were there on their own risk the city had nothing to do with it. The New York City employers that were suppose to be there like the fire fighters and the NYPD officers they should get treatment but anyone else that was not suppose to be there they should not get any help by the city or any funding.

Sam said...

Giving the people who are cleaning up such a sad mess do deserve some sort of compensation. The weeks following 9/11, my dad's coworkers were there cleaning things up. (I have a small piece of the WTC in my house as a result) These men & women have families, and its unfair to ask them to clean something that has such a great risk for them without helping them out monetarily.

The firemen and cops all get benefits, maybe their should be a 9/11 workers union to aid them? These people are putting themselves at risk for our city and we deny them help?

nyshee said...

i think that the government should pay for the expenses because if the volunteers and workers didnt help out th wwtc will be looking a hot mess and smelling like dead bodies morning,noon and night. and that with other them the wwtc centers will be scary sight to see and that the people family memebers that was lost and body will be found and that the families can feel a little better about themsleves and there lost ones.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Jason they should get credit for how well they worked but unfortunately there is not enough money to pay for their medical expenses. It is unfortunate for the volunteer workers because they wanted to help and instead got sick and may never work again. It is sad but we cannot drive our country into further stress and debt. Like jason said as well we will never really know everybody that was actually there or not. How do you conduct any kind of help when other people with other problems will come forward. This kind of situation has put the government between a rock and a hard place.
Michelle Asciote

shanicca conyers said...

when thinking about who should pay for the hospital bills of the sick people who worked down at ground zero i first said that the goverment should pay for it. i figured it was only right but then as i thought about it more their are millions of people who had got sick and there is not enough money to pay for all of their hospital bills... so then where do they get the money from... ? and that is where we (as workers) come in the picture they may start raising taxes to get the money for the bills. and being a worker myself i dont want to pay for their hospital bill. call it selfish but im not responsible for any of that and i did not ask the workers or anyone to go and be a super hero (volunteer workers). the goverment should pay for the hospital bills but not take away from our pockets.

Stephanieee said...

I can remember this discussion in class as if it was yesterday. We were all talking about how it was great that so many volunteers came down to the WTC site and helped search for remains but then again and than we read how they want the gov to pay for their health issues. Now how could we even tell who was at the cleanup to determine who needs their bills paid and what not. Their can be some people out there who have health conditions and now after reading/hearing about this article decide: Let's blame my illness on the 9-11-01 catastrophe and get money off it..And you know what there are some people out there who have sick minds and will do something that horrific and sicking. And than there are the actual victims who will be forever effected by an illnedd who wil; revieve NO money in return. Sometimes I feel this world is ridiculous but HEY WE ALL GOTTA LIVE IN IT