CFHC Trust Adds Thyroid Cancer Coverage




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CFHC Trust Adds Thyroid Cancer Coverage

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 13 July, 2022 08:15:05

Program addition is a win-win for firefighters and employers addressing cancer risk in the fire service

Denver, Colorado – July 7, 2022 – The Colorado Firefighter Heart and Cancer Benefits (CFHC) Trust Committee voted to add thyroid cancer coverage for all firefighters beginning July 1, 2022. In 2020, the Colorado Firefighter Heart and Cancer Benefits Trust (Trust) considered research on thyroid cancer. At that time, the conclusion was that there was not sufficient scientifically creditable data to add coverage for this type of cancer. However, three claims were filed in three years for thyroid cancer, something the CFHC Trust was not expecting as normally there is one about every 10 years.

With recent studies showing both male and female firefighters at a higher risk for thyroid cancer, likely due to poor sleep and working with endocrine disrupting chemicals, member feedback was sought as to whether to include thyroid cancer in the Trust. From the survey that was sent to members, there were 44 out of 46 total responses supporting the addition of thyroid cancer coverage, representing 55% of participating members. Supporters came from a wide range of fire department sizes ranging from small departments with five or fewer firefighters to large departments having over 100 firefighters. In total, responses represent approximately 1,724 eligible firefighters out of the 3,446 firefighters in the CFHC Trust’s Cancer Program.

Mike Frainier, President of the Colorado Professional Firefighters and Chair of the CFHC Trust Committee stated that, “The addition of thyroid cancer to our program is certainly another major step forward in helping our firefighters beat the cancers that disproportionately impacts their health as members of the fire service.”

The Trust Committee consists of four fire chiefs, one representative from the Colorado Professional Fire Fighters, two HR professionals, one risk manager, and one public official comprising four women and five men. The CFHC Trust was formed under Part 4 of Article 5 of Title 29, Colorado Revised Statutes, and allows participating fire organizations to opt out of the presumption of cancer for workers’ compensation. To date the Trust has approved roughly 95% of the claims covering the brain, digestive, genitourinary, hematological, and skin cancers.


About the CHFC Trust

The CFHC Trust was created to aid the state’s fire professionals and agencies contain the human and financial burdens created by serious health issues by providing mandated cardiac and voluntary cancer benefits to the state’s firefighters. The Trust program was designed with input from the Colorado Professional Fire Fighters, Colorado State Fire Chiefs, the state Division of Insurance, as well as individuals from municipal, county, and special district fire agencies.