Everyone has health issues. Some people are born with it, while others get it from their lifestyle. Some people get it from the workplace. Occupational hazards are common, although some types of jobs are riskier than others are. Say the term “nuclear facility” and it calls up all kinds of nightmare images of radioactive exposure shown on television and in movies.
While nuclear facilities have many safety measures in place, it is still a risky place in which to work. However, somebody has to do it. Workers at the Lawrence Livermore National Lab (LLNL), for instance, are always in danger of getting sick. Here are some health benefits they are entitled to if they got sick on the job.
You can claim medical benefits if you can prove you got sick on the job. For workers at LLNL, your benefits are under Part E of the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act. If you have cancer, for example, and it is more like than not because of exposure to radiation, you can make a claim. You can get as much as $250,000. This includes medical care, medications, lab tests, travel expenses, and hospitalization. If you need special equipment, that is also included.
You can also get home care if your illness keeps you from taking care of yourself. You can get is as long as you need it as long as your doctor and medical records show that you really need it.
However, you need to get approval from the district office before you can get home care. You will not get reimbursement for home care costs you already paid for before you got approval. You have to apply for this benefit separately from other health benefits.
If you lose the use of some part of your body because of your work-related illness, you can also get payment. You need your doctor to assess your condition and give you an impairment rating. The compensation is $2,500 for every 1% of impairment. If your doctor rates you as 25% impaired, for example, you can get $62,500 on top of other health benefits.
Working in a nuclear facility is safer now than it was 40 years ago, but it is still dangerous. If you work for the government or a private company that works for the government, then you have health benefits. Make sure you know your rights under the law.