After being rejected twice, a Connecticut Army veteran has been awarded federal disability benefits for terminal brain cancer he contends was caused by exposure to open burn pits in Afghanistan. Peter Antioho, 33, of Berlin, had to walk daily through heavy smoke emanating from burn pits as he performed his job as second in command on his base in 2012. A variety of items, including human and animal waste, plastic, ammunition and batteries were burned with diesel fuel 24 hours a day in open pits. He was diagnosed with glioblastoma multiforme brain cancer two years ago. (The Conn.
More than two-thirds of Americans have thought about their end-of-life preferences – yet fewer than a third have so-called living wills. Connecticut health care activists are hoping to help close that gap by joining in this year’s “National Healthcare Decisions Day” April 16, with a “call to action” event at the state Capitol. The national day is intended to stir people to choose a health care representative or proxy, and to make decisions about future healthcare treatment, in the event they cannot do so at the end of life. “It’s a difficult conversation – nobody wants to think about their mortality,” said Anne Elwell, a vice president of Qualidigm, the state’s Medicare consulting company, which is organizing the event. “It’s really about life planning — in the way that we think about what we want for our children or what happens to our possessions if something were to happen .