NYC Health + Hospitals' WTC Environmental Health Center Reaches Approximately 11,000 Patients as of July 2019
In the last year, the Center expanded capacity, hiring additional providers, giving patients the option to make appointments through the Call Center, and modernizing electronic health records at all three sites
NYC Health + Hospitals’ WTC Environmental Health Center today announced it has reached about 10,944 patients as of July 2019. This is an increase from 9,700 members in July 2018. The NYC Health + Hospitals WTC Environmental Health Center program provides services at no out-of-pocket costs to residents, students, workers, or passersby eligible for care under the Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act. In the last year, the WTC Environmental Health Center expanded capacity by hiring 16 additional providers at the clinics to perform patient visits, giving patients the option to make appointments through the Call Center, and modernizing the electronic health records system at the three sites. New providers include physicians, pharmacists, social workers, mental health providers, nurses, and nurse practitioners. A wide range of NYC Health + Hospitals clinical providers, such as physicians, therapists, psychiatrists, and social workers who specialize in many of the common health conditions related to 9/11, serve the WTC Environmental Health Center members.
“It has been 18 years since the terror attacks, and New Yorkers continue to feel the effects of that horrific day,” said Mitchell Katz, MD, President and CEO of NYC Health + Hospitals. “Our hope is that those whose health was affected by 9/11 seek the care they deserve through the WTC Environmental Health Center and continue to monitor their health.”
“The WTC Environmental Health Center continues to serve community members, including those who lived, worked, attended school, or were passing by on 9/11,” said Joan Reibman, MD, NYC Health + Hospitals WTC Environmental Health Center Medical Director. “The increase in patients treated by the Center demonstrates the continued need to care for persistent aerodigestive disorders, PTSD, as well as cancers in those who were exposed to the toxic dust and fumes. Enrollment remains open and we encourage New Yorkers to get the care they need.”
“The WTC Environmental Health Center is a model of service to patients affected by the 9/11 attacks,” said Assembly Health Committee Chair Richard N. Gottfried. “It brings together health care, mental health, and social work services tailored to the needs of these New Yorkers, and the new enrollment data shows just how important the program is to so many people.”
“The effects of 9/11 continue to be felt by the victims and their families. That includes first responders who heroically exposed themselves to toxic fumes, and victims still struggling to cope with the tragic events of that day,” said Congressman Gregory Meeks. “The WTC Environmental Health Center has been instrumental in providing them the health services they need, and this year’s increase in patients shows that we as New Yorkers, and as Americans, have an ongoing responsibility to take care of 9/11 victims.”
“While for many 9/11 seems like the distant past, thousands of New Yorkers carry the attacks with them every day. 11,000 people enrolled in the WTC Environmental Health Center underscores just how important these programs are and how much they are needed, said Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney. “I hope everyone whose health was impacted on September 11th, and in the months afterwards, will make use of the resources they need and deserve. I applaud the WTC Environmental Health Center for their work.”
“I applaud NYC Health + Hospitals for expanding the WTC Environmental Health Center to care for the survivors of 9/11,” said Congressman Eliot L. Engel. “Congress recently passed a permanent reauthorization of the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund, but we must now work to remove the cap on the WTC program so that 9/11 victims and survivors can get the care they need.”
“Eighteen years later, New Yorkers, from heroic first responders to passersby to students sitting in classrooms, are still dealing with the physical and emotional impacts of that dreadful day,” said Congressman Thomas R. Suozzi. “The WTC Environmental Health Center has now treated almost 11,000 patients affected with 9/11 related illnesses, demonstrating that the need for such comprehensive and compassionate medical centers is as great as ever. Let us never forget that for some the pain of 9/11 is as fresh as it was eighteen years ago. Thank you to WTC Environmental Health Center for your service and care to our community.”
NYC Health + Hospitals WTC Environmental Health Center operates out of three locations:
NYC Health + Hospitals is the largest public health care system in the nation serving more than a million New Yorkers annually in more than 70 patient care locations across the city’s five boroughs. A robust network of outpatient, neighborhood-based primary and specialty care centers anchors care coordination with the system’s trauma centers, nursing homes, post-acute care centers, home care agency, and MetroPlus health plan—all supported by 11 essential hospitals. Its diverse workforce of more than 42,000 employees is uniquely focused on empowering New Yorkers, without exception, to live the healthiest life possible. For more information, visit www.nychealthandhospitals.org and stay connected on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/NYCHealthSystem or Twitter at @NYCHealthSystem.