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NEW ORLEANS, La. Hundreds of thousands of Gulf Coast residents and clean-up workers who experienced illness or injury from exposure to oil and chemical dispersants will now be able to get the treatment and compensation they need and deserve.

Class Counsel leading the 2010 BP Gulf Oil Spill litigation announced that the Medical Benefits Settlement appeal has been dismissed by the US Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit.

'The Medical Benefits Settlement will provide compensation to Clean-Up workers and Gulf Coast residents suffering from a wide range of Specified Physical Conditions; establish a twenty-one-year periodic medical consultation program, and create a Gulf Region Health Outreach Program through a $105-million grant,' said Robin Greenwald and Matt Lundy, Class Counsel's lead Medical Settlement negotiators, in a statement released Wednesday.

'Claimants eligible for the medical settlement include Clean-Up Workers and residents living in certain 'Zone A' (beachfront areas within one-half mile of the water) or 'Zone B' (wetlands areas within one mile of the water) residents. The medical settlement contains a back-end litigation provision, whereby claimants with later manifesting illnesses retain their right to sue BP for compensation at a later date.'

Stephen J. Herman and James P. Roy, an attorney for Class Counsel, said 'It's been a long four years, but now hundreds of thousands of people will finally get the medical care and compensation they need. BP's spill had not only a profound environmental and economic effect on the Gulf, but the oil and chemicals released took an enormous toll as well. We're pleased that those affected will now be able to get their claims processed in a transparent and expeditious manner.'

According to the statement, there are several ways in which people might be eligible for benefits under the medical settlement agreement. All individuals who were clean-up workers during the oil spill response activities are class members and entitled to one or more of the settlement's benefits, regardless of whether the individual had any physical injury from exposure to the oil.

Another way in which a person might be a class member is if he or she lived in certain coastal zones in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama or the Florida Panhandle during parts of 2010.

To apply for benefits, or for more details, click here.

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