U.S. Department of Labor Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs
Division of Energy Employees Occupational
Illness Compensation
Washington, DC 20210
DOL Color Seal

 

 

EEOICPA CIRCULAR NO.  15-10           Date:  August 27, 2015

 

SUBJECT:  Westinghouse Electric Corp. Special Exposure Cohort (SEC) from February 1, 1958 through May 31, 1958 or from June 1, 1959 through June 30, 1959.

 

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 Westinghouse Electric Corp. located in Bloomfield, New Jersey.

 

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 at the Westinghouse Electric Corp. in Bloomfield, New Jersey 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. § 83.14.  NIOSH submitted its findings to the Advisory Board on Radiation and Worker Health (“the Board”) on June 9, 2015.  On July 1, 2015, 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 Westinghouse Electric Corp. in Bloomfield, New Jersey.

 

On July 28, 2015, the Secretary of HHS designated the following class for addition to the SEC in a report to Congress:

 

     All Atomic Weapons Employees who worked at the facility owned by Westinghouse Electric Corp. in Bloomfield, New Jersey, during the period from February 1, 1958 through May 31, 1958, or during the period from June 1, 1959 through June 30, 1959, 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 August 27, 2015, which was 30 days after the Secretary of HHS designated the class for addition to the SEC in the report to Congress.

 

This is the second SEC class for workers at the Westinghouse Electric Corp.  A prior class was the subject of EEOICPA Bulletin No. 10-14.  To qualify under this SEC class, the employee must be an Atomic Weapons Employee who worked at the facility owned by the Westinghouse Electric Corp. in Bloomfield, New Jersey, during the period from February 1, 1958 through May 31, 1958, or during the period from June 1, 1959 through June 30, 1959.  Because the employee cannot have 250 workdays at the facility owned by the Westinghouse Electric Corp. in Bloomfield, New Jersey during the periods 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 the Atomic Weapons Employees at the facility owned by the Westinghouse Electric Corp., NIOSH intends to use any available internal and external monitoring data that is 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 employees at the facility 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.

 

As outlined in EEOICPA Bulletin No. 11-07, the district offices are to use the comprehensive list provided as the basis for an initial screening of cases associated with all SEC classes.  For screening only, the results reflected on the initial screening worksheet must be recorded in ECS using the Screening (SEC/PER/Other) Navigation Panel.  From the Screening (SEC/PER/Other) Navigation Panel on the case, select the ‘Create’ button.  Based on the result of the review and in accordance with the ‘SEC Class Screening Worksheet’, select the appropriate result of “Likely” if the case is likely an SEC, “Unlikely” if it is unlikely that the case will be an SEC or “Development Needed” if development is needed.  The date of the signed worksheet is recorded in the “Date” field.  The reason associated with the SEC is selected in the “Reason” field.  For this SEC, the reason is “Rvwd per Circular 15-10, Westinghouse Electric Corp. (2/1/1958 - 5/31/1958 or 6/1/1959 – 6/30/1959).”  If the District Office and FAB staff determine that the case is going to be awarded based on an SEC, a positive SEC causation path must be entered into ECS, selecting the SER and SEF blocks, and entering their Dates and the appropriate SER Reason and SEF Reason “Rvwd per Circular 15-10, Westinghouse Electric Corp. (2/1/1958 - 5/31/1958 or 6/1/1959 – 6/30/1959).”  This process is the equivalent of the SER/SEF codes discussed in Bulletin 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