EEOICPA CIRCULAR NO. 12-02             November 17, 2011

 

SUBJECT:  Y-12 facility Special Exposure Cohort Class (SEC) from January 1, 1948 through December 31, 1957.

 

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 Y-12 facility in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. 

 

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 Y-12 facility in Oak Ridge, Tennessee to be added to the Special Exposure Cohort (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. § 83.14.  NIOSH submitted its findings to the petitioners and the Advisory Board on Radiation and Worker Health (“the Board”).  On September 19, 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 Y-12 facility in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.

 

On October 18, 2011, the Secretary of HHS designated the following class for addition to the SEC in a report to Congress:

 

All employees of the Department of Energy, its predecessor agencies, and their contractors and subcontractors who worked at the Y-12 facility in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, during the period from January 1, 1948 through December 31, 1957, 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 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 November 17, 2011, which was 30 days after the Secretary of HHS designated the class for addition to the SEC in the report to Congress.

 

It should be noted that there are already three classes in the SEC pertaining to Y-12.  The class to become effective on November 17, 2011, subsumes one of these earlier classes which covered only thorium and cyclotron workers at Y-12 for the period January 1, 1948 through December 31, 1957 (Bulletin No. 07-04).  The other two classes pertaining to Y-12 both cover the period March 1, 1943 though December 31, 1947 and the later of those includes all employees during the period (the first of these classes is covered in Bulletin Nos. 06-04, 06-11 and the latter class by Bulletin No. 08-41). 

 

To qualify under this most recent SEC class, the employee must be an employee of the Department of Energy, an employee of one of its predecessor agencies, or a contractor or subcontractor who has worked at least 250 workdays in any area of the Y-12 facility in Oak Ridge, Tennessee between January 1, 1948 and December 31, 1957.  If the employee does not have 250 workdays at the Y-12 facility during the period of the class, the case file must be reviewed to determine if additional days in the SEC can be found by combining days 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 Y-12 facility, NIOSH intends to use any available internal and external monitoring data that may become 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 Y-12 facility employees is included as Attachment 2.

 

This Circular should be used in conjunction with EEOICPA Bulletin No. 11-07, Special Exposure Cohort Claim Processing. A screening worksheet is included as Attachment 3.

 

The reason code “202 - Rvwd per Circular 12-02, Y-12 facility SEC (1/1/48-12/31/57)” 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 No. 11-07.

 

 

 

 

RACHEL P. LEITON

Director, Division of Energy Employees

Occupational Illness Compensation

 

Attachments

 

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