30 states already have a law that covers workers' compensation for firefighters with cancer. Pennsylvania firefighters are hoping that the state will follow suit.
Under the proposed legislation, the Cancer Presumption Bill, burden would be placed on the employer or municipality to prove that job hazards were not a major contributor to cancer for a firefighter who has served four or more years. Benefits would be disbursed either by the municipality's insurance company or workers' compensation carrier.
Studies have shown that cancers, including those that attack the brain, liver, colon, and prostate, are more prevalent in firefighters than in the general population. Pennsylvania receives fewer than 10 claims a year from firefighters for workers' compensation for cancer.