Occupational Diseases in the Workplace
May 5, 2020
Hello, and welcome to yet another home edition of Legal Tip Tuesday. I’m Vince Quatrini. Today I wanted to talk to you about occupational diseases. But before I do that, I want to remind everybody that QuatriniRafferty is open. We go into the office periodically, the attorneys, if we need to see you in person—we’re permitted to do that on a limited basis. And we’re available by phone, or email, or text, all the time. Occupational diseases. About 35 years ago I represented Frank Polowski who worked at the Latrobe Brewery and developed an asthma aggravation of his lungs.
Twelve years later, in front of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, I was able to convince the court – that’s a work injury. Up until then it was just considered an occupational disease, but now it’s both—injury, or occupational disease. So, if you’re in a work atmosphere where your lungs are impacted or you develop hepatitis, or in today’s world – COVID, or you have black lung—these are all work injuries under the separate category also of occupational disease.
Good example: The nurse in the emergency room or on the floor who gets stuck with a needle and develops hepatitis. If it’s a certain kind of occupational disease, hepatitis, you get a presumption. I’m a nurse, I have hepatitis, it’s presumed I got it while working. Those are the advantages we have with certain occupational diseases. Our firm of course has been handling this for the many years that I’ve been there, and we do it for individuals at a mental health facility, a corrections facility, our policemen, our firemen, our nurses, and our coal miners, and many other occupations. So, if you think that you have an occupational disease, as well as an injury, give us a call. We’re here 24/7. So, as I like to end with the governor’s statement, stay home, stay calm, stay safe. Until the next edition of Legal Tip Tuesday, this is Vince Quatrini. God bless you.