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H H S Department of Health and Human Services
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Health Resources and Services Administration

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Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is radiation exposure?
    Radiation is energy that occurs naturally in sunlight and sound waves. Man-made radiation is used in X-rays, nuclear weapons, nuclear power plants and cancer treatment. Exposure to radiation, even to small amounts of radiation over a long time, raises your risk of cancer and other health problems.
    In the U.S., nuclear weapons testing between 1945 and 1962 and the uranium mining industry between 1943 and 1971 may have exposed individuals who worked with or lived near them to harmful levels of radiation.
    Today, those individuals may be eligible for screening and financial compensation for certain illnesses they may have as a result.
    For more information, see Radiation Exposure Screening and Education.

  2. What is the Radiation Exposure Screening and Education Program?
    The Radiation Exposure Screening and Education Program (RESEP) is a Federal grant program established in 2000 to provide outreach, education, prevention, and early detection of cancers and diseases caused by radiation exposure from nuclear weapons testing and the uranium mining industry.
    For more information, see Radiation Exposure Screening and Education.

  3. How do I know if was exposed to radiation from nuclear weapons testing or the uranium mining industry?
    If you lived near areas where above-ground nuclear tests were conducted from 1945 through 1962 AND/OR worked in the uranium mining industry from 1942 through 1971, you may have been exposed to radiation.
    For detailed information, including the high-impact States and categories of exposure, see Am I Eligible.

  4. What are radiation exposure categories?
    An exposure category is the means by which one came in contact with radioactive material. For details on the five radiation exposure categories eligible for screening and, potentially, compensation, see Am I Eligible.

  5. What should I do if may have been exposed to radiation from nuclear weapons testing or the uranium mining industry?
    If you lived near or worked with nuclear weapons testing between 1945 and 1962 and the uranium mining industry between 1943 and 1971 you may have been exposed to radiation and should be screened for radiation-related cancers and other health conditions.
    To find a clinic where you can be screened, see Radiation Exposure Screening and Education Clinics.
    For materials you can give to your health care provider, see Radiation Exposure Screening and Education Clinical Guidelines Tools.
    If you have been diagnosed with a radiogenic cancer and would like to know more about the Radiation Exposure Compensation Program (U.S. Department of Justice), please phone 1-800-729-7327.

  6. What is the Radiation Exposure Compensation (RECA) Program?
    The Radiation Exposure Compensation Act (RECA) provides compensation to individuals who contracted certain cancers and other serious diseases as a result of their exposure to radiation released during above-ground nuclear weapons tests or as a result of their exposure to radiation during employment in underground uranium mines.
    For more information, see Radiation Exposure Compensation Program (U.S. Department of Justice).

  7. What is the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act (EEOICPA)?
    The Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act (EEOICPA) provides compensation to employees of the Department of Energy, its predecessor agencies, and its contractors and subcontractors involved in nuclear weapons production and testing programs.
    For more information, see Information about EEOICPA (U.S. Department of Labor).