SC State Firefighters’ Association & SC Firefighter Cancer Coalition Announce SC Firefighter Cancer Legislation

SC State Firefighters’ Association & SC Firefighter Cancer Coalition Announce SC Firefighter Cancer Legislation

The South Carolina State Firefighters’ Association in collaboration with SC Firefighter Cancer Coalition is proud to announce that two firefighter cancer bills have been introduced in the South Carolina Senate and House of Representatives. Senators Alexander, Talley, Grooms, Martin, Young & Peeler introduced S 1071, on February 4, 2020; which has been referred to the Committee on Banking and Insurance and Wednesday (February 12, 2020) Representative Erickson, Wooten, Crawford, Bailey, Atkinson & Chellis introduced H 5139, which has been referred to the Committee on Labor, Commerce and Industry.  

The Coalition would like to thank Lillian Carney for her passionate testimony on Wednesday (February 12, 2020) during the Senate’s Banking and Insurance’s Subcommittee. Mrs. Carney told her story and the story of other“Firefighter Widows” and the impact of Firefighter Cancer which led to the loss of her husband Battalion Chief Josh Carney in 2017. The need for this legislation is great and is needed not just for our heroes but for their families.


We are excited that members of the fire service and other agencies have come together for the common goal of protecting our firefighters in South Carolina. These bills will benefit both career and volunteer firefighters across our state that serve our citizens on a daily basis. We encourage all of South Carolina Legislators to support this much needed legislation for our SC Firefighters and their families.


The Firefighter Cancer Health Care Benefit Plan is a supplemental insurance policy. The bill would; upon a diagnosis of cancer, entitle a firefighter to benefits, if a firefighter has been in a South Carolina Fire Department for at least 5(five) continuous years and within 10(ten) years of last date of active service. 


Firefighters would be reimbursed up to $12,000 annually for any out of pocket medical expenses to include but not limited to; deductibles, copayments, or coinsurances costs incurred. A benefit of $20,000 would be provided upon the firefighter’s diagnosis as defined and not to exceed 1(one) benefit payment per calendar year. Additional benefits would be available upon a 12-month remission and separate diagnosis.  In the case of death, if a firefighter dies as a result of cancer or circumstances, a $75,000 death benefit would be provided.  This bill would also make a firefighter death, that is a result of cancer or circumstances that arise from the treatment of cancer; a line of duty death.

This bill defines “cancer” for firefighters as malignant neoplasms of the following body areas and organ systems:

  • Central / Peripheral Nervous System
  • Oropharyngeal
  • Respiratory Tract
  • Gastrointestinal Tract
  • Hepatobiliary
  • Solid Organ / Endocrine
  • Genitourinary / Male Reproductive
  • GYN
  • Skin / Soft Tissue / Breast
  • Bone / Blood


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