Council Member Joseph C. Borelli and partner-group, HeartScan Services, offered free thyroid cancer screenings for police officers, precinct staff, and community members at the 123rd Precinct in Tottenville on Friday morning.
This is the second screening Borelli has hosted this year with HeartScan. The screenings are offered to all members of the community, especially those who are active and retired emergency responders.
“After the September 11th attacks we saw a dramatic increase in thyroid cancer among first responders and people who spent time in lower Manhattan,” said Council Member Borelli. “We’ve had hundreds of people come for these screenings and I can’t tell you how many have said it has saved their life. It’s a fact that early detection saves lives, and we hope many people will take advantage of this opportunity to get checked.”
Research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association’s JAMA Oncology showed a higher than average occurrence of certain cancers among those who had spent time near Ground Zero after the September 11th attacks. “The FDNY-WTCHP cohort will experience a greater cancer burden than would be expected from a demographically similar population,” the researchers wrote. “This underscores the importance of cancer prevention efforts and routine screening in WTC-exposed rescue and recovery workers.”
The screenings were made possible through a fiscal year 2019 budget allocation from Borelli to HeartScan Services, an organization which offers a variety of other health screenings to many of the city’s unionized workforce.