Officials with the Radiation and Worker Health Program met today to discuss issues about their benefits at certain Department of Energy facilities.
Idaho National Laboratory was among the three facilities present because several hundred people have filed claims. This means that people who currently work there or past employees of the lab have been diagnosed with cancer, which they believe is from work.
During the meeting, the board advised the Department of Health and Human Services as well as the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) on dose reconstruction and Special Exposure Cohort petitions.
"If a person who worked at INL gets cancer and feels like their cancer is due to radiation exposure they received on the job, they could file a claim in this program and our job at NIOSH is (to) attempt to reconstruct the dose, that person received while they were here. You know how much dose they could have received. Once we have done that, the Department of Labor takes that information and determines whether their cancer was more likely or not caused by the radiation exposure.," said Stuart Hinnefeld, director of the division of compensation for NIOSH.
The meeting was just discussing the petitions and no action will be taken yet.
Claims can be made by employees, former employees and family members that lost loved ones to cancer. If you want to make a claim you can contact the Idaho Falls Department of Labor.