The Queensland CFMEU has revelaed two more workers have black lung, taking the state total to eight confirmed cases of coal miners’ pneumoconiosis since December last year.
Both workers were reported to have worked in Bowen Basin coal mines for more than 20 years.
Both individuals are in the mid-50s and wish to remain anonymous.
However, the Department of Natural Resources and Mines says it has not confirmed the two new cases, and maintains the current figure at six.
A confirmed case is where a positive identification of coal worker's pneumoconiosis has been reported… by the coal mine worker's nominated medical advisor or other medical expert and validated by the department's occupational physician," a spokesperson said.
Queensland CFMEU Health and Safety representative Jason Hill has speculated that hundreds more cases of black lung may yet be diagnosed, due to continued breaches of dust limits in underground coal mines.
A preliminary report from the review committee into the Queensland Coal Miners Health Scheme, headed by Professor Malcolm Sim, is expected to be released this month.