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Statement Of Senator Clinton Regarding HHS Decision

 
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DMCKEON
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 22, 2008 7:42 pm    Post subject: Statement Of Senator Clinton Regarding HHS Decision
From Tue Jan 22, 2008 3:00 am to Sat Jan 26, 2008 2:59 am (included)
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

January 22, 2008



Contact: Press Office

212-688-9780



STATEMENT OF SENATOR HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON REGARDING HHS DECISION TO CANCEL CONTRACT SOLICITATIONS FOR CRITICAL 9/11 HEALTH PROGRAM



Lawmakers Heard Testimony From 9/11 Responders At Today’s Hearing By Oversight Subcommittee on Government Management, Organization, and Procurement



Hearing Examined HHS Decision To Cancel Solicitations For Contract To Manage 9/11 Responder Health Care



“Following the devastating terrorist attacks of September 11th, people from across the country came to New York to offer aid to a stunned city in its greatest hour of need. In December 2007 the Administration canceled solicitations for contracts that are needed to manage the treatment and care of those responders who themselves are now suffering from illnesses as a direct result of their exposure to the toxic substances released at Ground Zero. It is unconscionable to think that as enrollees to 9/11 health programs continue to rise, the Administration has failed to provide coordinated, comprehensive, federally funded treatment for responders outside of the New York City area. It is our national responsibility to care for those who put their health and wellbeing on the line for New York in the hours, days, weeks, and months following the horrific attacks, and I strongly urge the Administration to take all necessary steps to ensure that we can continue these critically important programs. I commend my House colleagues, Representatives Carolyn Maloney, Jerrold Nadler, and Vito Fossella for their work on this, and Chairman Ed Towns for convening today’s important hearing.”



Senator Clinton has been a vocal advocate who has fought to ensure that first responders and victims of the 9/11 attacks receive the care and treatment they deserve. In December 2007, Senator Clinton joined with her colleagues in Congress to urge HHS to reconsider their decision to terminate these critical contracts that would manage responder health care (See - http://clinton.senate.gov/news/statements/details.cfm?id=289251&&).



Additionally, Senator Clinton, and Senators Charles Schumer, Frank Lautenberg, and Robert Menendez, along with Representatives Carolyn Maloney, Jerrold Nadler, and Vito Fossella worked to ensure that the FY2008 Omnibus Appropriations bill included an additional $108 million in federal funding to address the mounting health needs of those individuals who were exposed to environmental hazards released as a result of the 9/11 attacks. The money builds on the $50 million that was provided in the Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Bill that was signed into law in 2007, bringing total funding for the year to $158 million (See- http://clinton.senate.gov/news/statements/details.cfm?id=290007&&).



Last March, Senator Clinton chaired a Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee hearing on 9/11 health, and is committed to working on a bipartisan basis with her colleagues to develop a long-term solution to the health care needs of those affected by exposure to the toxins released as a result of the 9/11 attacks.
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