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Free Intermountain clinics help those affected by nuclear testing of the 50s & 60s

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Intermountain Healthcare Dixie Regional Medical Center has a unique clinic – The Radiation Exposure Screening and Education Clinic– that was established at Dixie Regional Medical Center in 2004 to aid thousands of individuals exposed to the nuclear testing at the Nevada Test Site in the 1950s. 

Rebecca Barlow, Project Director for Radiation Exposure Screening Clinic at Intermountain Dixie Regional Hospital joined us to talk about who are those that were affected by testing in Nevada.

Those affected have an increased risk of developing specified cancers that may be connected to their nuclear exposure. The clinic wants to ensure they are aware of possible compensation available to them.

Many people affected by the nuclear tests are called Downwinders, a term used to describe the more than 60,000 people who were exposed to radioactive fallout in southern Utah and eastern Nevada during the nuclear testing at the Nevada Test Site from 1951-58 and July of 1962.  

 The clinic is working to raise awareness about the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act about patient assistance in applying for federal RECA compensation. Federal legislation funding RECA is set to expire in 2022. The Clinic is urging people to contact their congressional representatives to advocate that future funding be approved. 

The purposes of the clinic are to provide cancer-focused screening physicals to those exposed, education on cancer screening recommendations and patient assistance in applying for RECA compensation.

Since inception, the clinic has provided FREE cancer screening physicals and education to more than 3,500 patients and has assisted many individuals with applying for compensation through the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act. It is one of the busiest clinics of its kind in the nation.

There are three categories of people who qualify for the free RESEP clinic: downwinders, nuclear test site employees, and uranium industry employees. 

Downwinders

Those who lived in Washington, Iron, Kane, Beaver, Millard, Piute, San Juan, Sevier, Wayne and Garfield counties in Utah; Eureka, Lander, Lincoln, Nye, White Pine or northeast Clark counties in Nevada; and northern Mohave, Coconino, Apache, Gila, Navajo and Yavapai counties in Arizona, for at least one year from 1951 to 1958 or the month of July 1962 during the nuclear testing at the Nevada Test Site. 

Nevada Test Site Workers

Those who worked on-site at the Nevada, Pacific, Trinity or South Atlantic Test Sites during an atmospheric detonation of a nuclear weapon.

Uranium Industry Workers

Those who were miners, millers or transporters of uranium for at least one year from 1942-1971. 

The Cost

All clinic services are funded by the United States Department of Health and Human Services and are free of charge to those who qualify.

Contact Us

For information and/or to schedule a cancer-screening physical or RECA compensation assistance, please call the clinic at 435-251-4760. 

Cancers that qualify under the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act include leukemia (but NOT chronic lymphocytic leukemia), multiple myeloma, lymphomas (other than Hodgkin’s), and primary cancers of the pharynx, small intestine, salivary gland, brain, stomach, urinary tract/bladder, colon, thyroid, pancreas, breast, esophagus, bile ducts, liver, gall bladder, lung, and ovary. 

“People should be aware that the legislation funding RECA is set to expire in 2022. Your help contacting our legislators to ask their help in extending this deadline is greatly appreciated,” said Barlow.

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