EEOICPA CIRCULAR NO. 11-06 May 29, 2011
SUBJECT: Wah Chang Facility Special Exposure Cohort (SEC) Class from January 1, 1971 through December 31, 1972.
The purpose of this Circular is to notify all Division of Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation (DEEOIC) staff of the SEC class designation for the Wah Chang facility, in Albany, Oregon.
Pursuant to the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act of 2000 (EEOICPA) and 42 C.F.R. Part 83, a petition was filed on behalf of workers from the Wah Chang facility in Albany, Oregon to be added to the SEC.
The decision to initiate this petition occurred after the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) determined that it could not reconstruct a dose under 42 C.F.R. § 83.13. NIOSH submitted its findings to the Advisory Board on Radiation and Worker Health (“the Board”). On March 30, 2011, the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) received the Board’s recommendation to add to the SEC a class of employees who worked at the Wah Chang facility in Albany, Oregon.
On April 29, 2011, the Secretary of HHS designated the following class for addition to the SEC in a report to Congress:
All Atomic Weapon Employer employees who worked in any building at the Wah Chang facility in Albany, Oregon, for the operational period from January 1, 1971 through December 31, 1972, for a number of work days aggregating at least 250 work days, occurring either solely under this employment or in combination with work days within the parameters established for one or more other classes of employees included in the Special Exposure Cohort.
A copy of the Secretary’s letter to Congress recommending the designation is included as Attachment 1. Although Congress had the authority to reject the recommendation within a 30-day time frame, Congress took no action. Therefore, the SEC designation for this class became effective as of May 29, 2011, which was 30 days after the Secretary of HHS designated the class for addition to the SEC in the report to Congress.
To qualify under this SEC class, the employee must be an Atomic Weapons Employee who has worked at least 250 workdays at the Wah Chang facility in Albany, Oregon from January 1, 1971 through December 31, 1972. If the employee does not have 250 workdays at the Wah Chang facility during the period of the class, the case file must be reviewed to determine if additional workdays in the SEC can be found by combining workdays from employment meeting the criteria for other SEC classes and aggregating them together to meet the 250 workday requirement.
While a new SEC class has been added for employees at the Wah Chang facility, NIOSH intends to use any reliable internal and external monitoring data that may be available for an individual claim (and that can be interpreted using existing NIOSH dose reconstruction processes or procedures). This means that for claims that do not satisfy the SEC membership criteria, a partial dose reconstruction is to be performed by NIOSH.
A copy of the NIOSH letter to affected Wah Chang facility employees is included as Attachment 2.
This Circular should be used in conjunction with EEOICPA Bulletin 11-07, Special Exposure Cohort Claim Processing. A screening worksheet is included as Attachment 3.
The reason code “C06, - Rvwd per Circular 11-06” has been added to ECMS to be used in conjunction with the NA, ISL, ISU, ISD, SER, and SEF codes as outlined in EEOICPA Bulletin 11-07.
RACHEL P. LEITON
Director, Division of Energy Employees
Occupational Illness Compensation
Distribution List No. 1: Claims Examiners, Supervisory Claims Examiners, Technical Assistants, Customer Service Representatives, Fiscal Officers, FAB District Managers, Operation Chiefs, Hearing Representatives, District Office Mail & File Section