Excerpt from the OH&S Canada magazine
Prince Edward Island firefighters and fire inspectors will have presumptive coverage for specific types of cancers and heart injuries as a result of amendments to the Worker’s Compensation Act that took effect January 1, 2019. Eligible firefighters include fire inspectors and full-time, part-time and volunteer firefighters who are members of a fire department or brigade.
“This coverage will offer much-needed care to many firefighters who may encounter serious health problems resulting from the valuable work they did to protect their communities,” says Stuart Affleck, chair of the Workers’ Compensation Board. “The legislative and regulatory changes ensure that if a firefighter or fire inspector develop specific diseases or heart injury, it will be presumed that it is work related.”
Presumptive coverage is based on the following principles: specified injuries or diseases are presumed to be work-related; presumption apply to firefighters who experience a heart injury (such as a heart attack, cardiac arrest or arrhythmia) within 24 hours of responding to an emergency; and presumption apply to specific types of cancers provided the firefighter had been exposed to the hazards of a fire over the minimum cumulative period of employment, which range anywhere from 5 to 25 years, depending on the type of cancer.
Presumption for primary site lung cancer applies only if the firefighter has been a non–smoker for 10 consecutive years prior to the initial diagnosis.
Please read the following the government of Ontario’s report on the subject.
The province of Ontario saw fit to improve the health protection for Ontario fire-fighters way back in 2014.
The need is real and I am glad that most provinces have better protection for the fire-fighters or are in the preparation stage to help them.
Fire-fighters are a front-line response and put their lives on the line each and every time they go out on a call. I salute the government of PEI for realizing this and making the appropriate legislative changes.
Ensure your workplace is a safe place.
Remember – “ALL Accidents are Preventable”
‘Work’ and ‘Play’ safe.
Daniel L. Beal
CHSEP – Advanced Level
VP & Senior Trainer
HRS Group Inc.