Mesothelioma is a terrible kind of cancer to have. It is aggressive, deadly, and rarely diagnosed in time for treatment to extend life expectancies by very much time. If you know or love someone who is struggling with this illness, or who has passed away because of it, you can be an advocate fighting for the victims of this disease. Individuals with mesothelioma can benefit from advancing research, more awareness, and mesothelioma legal action that brings justice and compensation.
Mesothelioma Patients as Victims
Unlike many other illnesses, most cases of mesothelioma were preventable. The major risk factor for this type of cancer is asbestos exposure. Asbestos is a mineral that is carcinogenic and that has been used extensively in construction materials, shipbuilding, automotive parts, and other applications. Breathing in the fibers of asbestos can lead to a number of serious health conditions, including mesothelioma.
Most people who are suffering because of mesothelioma or who have died from it were exposed to asbestos without realizing it or without realizing that it came with risks. Construction workers, U.S. Navy veterans, shipyard workers, factory workers, miners, plumbers, and many other workers in industries that used asbestos were exposed over the course of their careers. Employers and manufacturers of asbestos materials failed these workers who then became sick.
Advocating for Research and Awareness
Many advocates for mesothelioma patients hope that their work will bring greater awareness to the disease and with it the research that is needed to provide better diagnostic techniques and more effective treatments. There are numerous organizations and groups of people who band together to educate the public about mesothelioma and the risks of asbestos.
These groups bring awareness to the issue, but also raise money for research and advocate for policy changes that will bring funding to research and help protect more people from asbestos exposure. Joining one of these action groups is a great way to get involved and to become a health advocate.
Advocating for Individuals with Mesothelioma
If you know one special person struggling with mesothelioma, such as a parent, an uncle, or a friend, you can advocate for that individual and make a big difference in his or her life. This may mean being part of a support system, going to doctors’ appointments, and fighting for what is best for the patient in terms of treatment and care.
You can also advocate for a patient through financial or legal avenues. Many people with mesothelioma are eligible for compensation, through an asbestos trust fund for instance. Veterans may be eligible for funding through the Veterans Administration. When these avenues are not open to your loved one, there are legal options. Many patients have filed lawsuits against former employers or manufacturers of asbestos-containing materials and won. You can help an individual find a good lawyer and make a case for getting justice and adequate compensation.
Advocating for patients is an important job, especially when those patients are the victims of industries, employers, and manufacturers who exposed people to dangerous materials. Through advocacy groups, political action, fundraising, or just working with an individual, you can make a big difference in the fight against mesothelioma.
Virgil Anderson was recently diagnosed with mesothelioma cancer, which is a cancer caused by exposure to asbestos. One year ago before all this happened, Virgil was very active but now he has become extremely limited in his activities. He is now being treated at the national cancer institute while also spreading awareness of mesothelioma.