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Bush Administration to Expand Department of Energy Former Worker Medical Screening Program

February 9, 2005 - 10:05am

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Estimates project that over 25,000 additional workers will receive screening

Program Fact Sheet [PDF]
U.S. Map of Medical Screening Sites [GIF]

WASHINGTON, D.C.   - U.S. Secretary of Energy Samuel W. Bodman today announced that the Bush administration will add nine additional medical screening centers as part of the department's Former Worker Medical Screening Program at no additional cost to the taxpayer. Under this expansion, the Former Worker Medical Screening Program will offer all former Energy Department employees, contractors and subcontractors free medical examinations to determine if possible exposure to harmful substances during their employment resulted in subsequent illness.  

"This is a clear case where improving the efficiency and effectiveness of a meaningful government program has a direct impact on people's lives. These Americans' efforts helped to cement not only our freedom, but America's victory in the Cold War and the security we know today. Providing this screening is the first step in getting these former workers the medical care they so rightly deserve," Secretary Bodman said.

The Fiscal Year 2005 Budget (enacted) provided $12.5 million for the operation of 10 screening centers around the country. Under the budget request presented by President Bush to Congress, funding for the Former Worker Program would remain at $12.5 million in 2006. Through significant improvements in efficiency as well as key policy changes, the Department of Energy will open nine additional sites as well as offer a toll-free number (1-888/580-1746 ) to guide former workers who don't live near a regional center, or, who prefer to see their personal physician through the program.

"At no extra cost to the taxpayers, President Bush has expanded the current program to ensure that every former DOE worker will be able to benefit from this important health screening program. This underscores Secretary Bodman's commitment to the long-term health of DOE workers," said John Shaw, DOE Assistant Secretary for Environment, Safety and Health.

New clinics will be established for former employees of the following facilities:

  • Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley, California)
  • Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (Livermore, California)
  • Sandia National Laboratory (Albuquerque, New Mexico)
  • Ames (Ames, Iowa)
  • National Nuclear Security Administration (Kansas City Plant; Kansas City, Missouri)
  • Mound Closure Project (Miamisburg, Ohio)
  • Fernald Closure Project (Fernald, Ohio)
  • Brookhaven National Lab (Upton, New York)
  • Pinellas Project (Pinellas, Florida)

Clinics currently serving former workers of the following facilities include:

  • Hanford Project (Richland, Washington)
  • Idaho National Lab (Idaho Falls, Idaho)
  • Nevada Test Site (near Las Vegas, Nevada)
  • Rocky Flats Closure Project (Golden, Colorado)
  • National Nuclear Security Administration's Pantex Plant (near Amarillo, Texas)
  • Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant (Paducah, Kentucky)
  • Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plant (Portsmouth, Kentucky)
  • Oak Ridge Operations (Oak Ridge, Tennessee)
  • Savannah River Site (Aiken, South Carolina)
  • Iowa Army Ammunition Project

Media contact:  Mike Waldron, 202/586-4940

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