Earlier this week, Congressman Lee Zeldin (R, NY-1) was joined by Representatives Andrew Garbarino (R, NY-2) and Tom Suozzi (D, NY-3) in reintroducing the Vietnam Veterans Liver Fluke Cancer Study Act, which requires the Department of Veterans Affairs, in conjunction with the Centers for Disease Control, to conduct a study to determine the prevalence of “liver fluke” amongst the veteran population and the link between a veteran’s service record and affliction, paving the way for veterans to claim a service connected disability under their Veterans Affairs benefits.
Congressman Zeldin said after reintroducing the bill, “I am deeply concerned about the Liver Fluke parasite that has infected so many of our nation’s veterans, especially our brave service members who were deployed to Southeastern and Eastern Asia. Preliminary reports appear to have indicated these veterans are carrying the dormant parasite Platyhelminthes, commonly known as ‘liver fluke’, which in several instances has led to the contraction of very serious, life threatening health conditions such as bile duct cancer and liver disease. Our nation’s veterans have earned nothing less than the highest quality care, and it is our responsibility as a nation to develop a plan, secure funding to test all veterans whose service exposed them to ‘liver fluke’, and if necessary, provide appropriate care, and do so as soon as possible. That’s why today, I was proud to continue to fight on behalf of these very veterans by reintroducing legislation that requires a long-overdue study of this disease and paves the way for infected veterans to receive the treatment they have earned.”
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