Friday, June 23, 2017

Mesothelioma and Asbestos Exposure: Disease-related illnesses in Maine increase despite the decline in use of asbestos

by William J. Gallitto, III

A recent study published by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that despite regulatory actions and the overall decline in use of asbestos, mesothelioma-related fatalities increased from 2,479 in 1999 to 2,597 in 2015.  During this period, mesothelioma diagnoses, a specific type of cancer only caused by exposure to asbestos, increased in persons older than 85, both sexes, and all ethnic groups.  Specifically, Maine has one of the highest age-adjusted death rates for mesothelioma of any state in the country, closely followed by Massachusetts and New Hampshire.  The CDC’s study indicated that ship building and construction industries were “major contributors” to mesothelioma mortality rates.

This study also indicates that the continuing occurrence of mesothelioma deaths among persons 55 years of age and younger suggests that there are ongoing occupational and environmental exposures that are still occurring despite regulatory actions taken by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to limit asbestos exposure.  Mesothelioma fatalities were projected to decline after 2005, but just the opposite occurred.   Studies suggest that more needs to be done at the national and state level to protect against this preventable, occupational and environmental hazard.

If you or a loved-one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, lung cancer, or has been exposed to asbestos, please contact attorney William J. Gallitto, III at Bergen & Parkinson, LLC today to better understand your legal rights.  Attorney Gallitto has years of experience litigating asbestos-related cases and has handled hundreds of asbestos-related cases to conclusion.


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