All former and current coal miners in western Virginia are encouraged to take advantage of  the free and confidential health screenings the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) will be offering starting tomorrow.

The screenings are intended to provide early detection of coal workers’ pneumoconiosis (CWP), also known as black lung, a serious but preventable occupational lung disease caused by breathing respirable coal mine dust.

What's involved

The screenings, which take about 30 minutes, include a work history questionnaire, a chest radiograph, a respiratory assessment questionnaire, and spirometry testing. Blood pressure screening will be conducted as well. NIOSH provides the individual miner with the results of their own screening. By law, each person’s results are confidential; no individual information is publicly disclosed. Walk-ins are accepted, though miners are urged to call 1-888-480-4042 to schedule an appointment.


NIOSH will have its state-of-the-art mobile testing unit at the following community and mine locations:




St. Charles Black Lung Clinic 213 Monarch Road, St. Charles, VA 24282


8am – 6pm

Under Bridge Beside Save-A-Lot Store Intersection at Callahan Avenue, Appalachia, VA 24216


6am – 7pm

Deep Mine #26, Paramont Coal Red Onion Prison Road, Pound, VA 24279


5am – 6pm

780 Commonwealth Drive, Norton, VA 24273


7am – 7pm

Binns-Counts Community Center
124 Ritter Circle, McClure, VA 24269


8am – 6pm

Deep Mine #41
Paramont Coal, 1465 Herndon Rd, McClure, VA 24269


6am – 6pm

St. Paul Shopping Center
Wise Street, St. Paul, VA, 24283


7am – 7pm

Brickyard Shopping Plaza
Food Lion, 124 Kents Ridge Road, Richlands, VA 24641


7am – 7pm

Big Rock Community Center
1054 School House Road, Big Rock, VA 24603


7am - 7pm

Hurley Black Lung Clinic
10279 Hurley Road, Hurley, VA 24620


7am – 7pm

Comfort Inn
22006 Riverside Drive, Route 460 & Main Street
Grundy, VA 24614


7am – 7pm

Save-A-Lot Store
3413 Riverside Drive, Oakwood, VA 24631


7am – 7pm

Vansant Black Lung Clinic
Anchorage Shopping Center , 1060 Anchorage Circle
Vansant, VA 24656


8am - 7pm

The Virginia screenings, which will be the last ones NIOSH conducts in 2016, follow earlier  mobile screenings in coal mining regions throughout Oklahoma, Arkansas, Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi.

Black lung disease increasing

The incidence of black lung disease among long-term underground miners decreased from the 1970s to the 1990s, but has been on the rise since 1999.

Black lung disease can occur in mines of all sizes.  Miners who work in particular areas of the country, in certain mining jobs, and in smaller mines have an increased risk of developing CWP. Progressive Massive Fibrosis (PMF), a more serious, advanced disease, is much more prevalent among miners from underground mines with fewer than 50 workers.

NIOSH encourages miners and their families to find out additional information about the Program at the following website: