POA Decision – 2000/06/05-01 – Schedule B Item 5 Firefighters/Heart Injury or Disease
The Panel of Administrators approved a resolution which: • Removes the firefighter heart presumption from Schedule B of the Workers Compensation Act; • Approves a policy on firefighters and heart injury which recognizes the unique risks faced by firefighters and clarifies when the Board will normally conclude that a firefighter's heart injury is work-related; and • Approves the addition of heart disease to the list of occupational diseases recognized by regulation of general application. Once the changes are in effect, firefighters will continue to receive compensation for heart-related claims where the Board determines that they are work-related. Claims will be adjudicated on their individual merits as they are for the vast majority of claims for injuries or occupational diseases. In its resolution, the Panel also directed that expedited training take place among Board officers on the new policy and that the Board facilitate further research, to be undertaken over the next five-to-ten years, on the matter of heart injury and disease among firefighters and other emergency workers. The Panel based its decision on the medical and scientific evidence received from the experts retained by the Board and from stakeholders. The changes took effect September 5, 2000 (90 days after deposit of a regulation with the Registrar of Regulations).