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War Related Illness and Injury Study Center


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Airborne Hazards and Burn Pits Center of Excellence


The Airborne Hazards Center of Excellence at the New Jersey War Related Illness and Injury Study Center (NJ WRIISC), established in 2013, was officially recognized by Congress and the President in Public Law 115-929 as a VA Center of Excellence. Designated as the Airborne Hazards and Burn Pits Center of Excellence (AHBPCE) in May 2019, the Center conducts clinical and translational research related to airborne hazards and burn pits. It also actively develops and delivers new educational content related to airborne hazards and burn pits for healthcare providers, Veterans and other stakeholders.

AHBPCE-WRIISC Airborne hazards REgistry (AWARE) Program

The AHBPCE recently launched the AWARE program that is specifically designed for Veterans who:

  • Completed the Airborne Hazards and Open Burn Pit Registry (AHOBPR) online questionnaire,
  • Indicated a desire for an in-person AHOBPR exam,
  • Reported chronic respiratory symptoms, and
  • Meet other eligibility criteria.

The AWARE program will reach out to AHOBPR participants with high priority conditions and unexplained shortness of breath or decreased exercise tolerance to receive an evaluation at the NJ WRIISC. This clinical evaluation will inform the diagnosis and treatment of the individual Veteran and will better characterize the range of problems experienced by deployed Veterans to further medical knowledge and develop best practices.