Asbestos Illness Related to Military Service

National Steel and Shipbuilding Company shipyard workers use a barge crane to move the propellers and rudder of the amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard, Dec. 23, 2010. (U.S. Navy photo/Joe Kane)
National Steel and Shipbuilding Company shipyard workers use a barge crane to move the propellers and rudder of the amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard, Dec. 23, 2010. (U.S. Navy photo/Joe Kane)

Veterans who served in any of the following occupations may have been exposed to asbestos: mining, milling, shipyard work, insulation work, demolition of old buildings, carpentry and construction, manufacturing and installation of products such as flooring and roofing.

Veterans who served in Iraq and other countries in that region could have been exposed to asbestos when older buildings were damaged and the contaminant released into the air.

Disability Rights for Veteran Asbestos Victims

Veterans can file a claim for disability compensation for health problems they believe are related to exposure to asbestos during military service. VA decides these claims on a case-by-case basis.

Veterans must prove that their disease is related to asbestos exposure, that the exposure occurred during active duty, and that there are no other incidents of potential exposure either preceding or following active duty.  That's not always easy when the disease surfaces decades after completing active duty.

Health Benefits for Veteran Asbestos Victims

If you are concerned about health problems associated with asbestos exposure during your military service, talk to your health care provider or local VA Environmental Health Coordinator.

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