Black lung ‘was never stamped out’ as cases spike in Queensland, doctor says

A Brisbane respiratory specialist has added his voice to fears about the growing number of undiagnosed cases of black lung disease affecting coal miners.

Dr Ian Brown says although it was believed black lung – caused by the long exposure to coal dust – had been eradicated more than two decades ago, it was never actually stamped out.

It was believed black lung - caused by the long exposure to coal dust - had been eradicated more than two decades ago. It was believed black lung – caused by the long exposure to coal dust – had been eradicated more than two decades ago. Photo: Greg Newington

 

The CFMEU this week reported an eighth former miner was diagnosed with pneumoconiosis and said it knows of another 12 cases.

Dr Brown expects there may well be many more due to many legitimate cases being overlooked or not properly scrutinised since the 1990s.