The EEOICPA established the ‘Special Exposure Cohort’ or SEC to compensate eligible claimants of this cohort without a need for a dose reconstruction and determining the probability of causation. Therefore, if an employee meets the required employment criteria in the SEC and they are diagnosed with a specific cancer, it would be presumed that the cause of this cancer was due to employment-related radiation. The ‘Special Exposure Cohort’ for the Hanford Site is to include all employees of the Department of Energy and their contractors and subcontractors who worked the appropriate amount of days that would aggregate to at least 250 work days prior to December 31, 1983. The SEC was extended until December 31, 1990, but there are certain contractors/subcontractors who were not included in that extension. The claimant will need to fill out the employment history paperwork as part of the initial claim process.
After the job history portion has been completed, you must confirm a diagnosis of a specific cancer within the SEC class.
The cancers included within this class are:
a. Leukemia. (CLL is excluded). The onset is to have occurred at least two years after initial exposure at any covered facility during a covered time period.
b. Primary or Secondary Lung Cancer. (In situ lung cancer that is discovered during or after a post-mortem exam is excluded.) The trachea and bronchi are included as part of the lungs. Sarcoma of the lung is a lung cancer. The pleura and lung are separate organs, so cancer of the pleura, such as mesothelioma, is not a specified cancer.
c. Primary of Secondary Bone Cancer. This includes myelodysplastic syndrome, myelofibrosis with myeloid metaplasia, essential thrombocytosis or essential thrombocythemia, and primary polycythemia vera (also called polycythemia rubra vera, P. vera, primary polycythemia, proliferative polycythemia, spent-phase polycythemia, or primary erythremia). A diagnosis of polycythemia vera (and the listed a/k/a nomenclature) is sufficient by itself to be classified as a malignancy of the bone marrow. Leukocytosis and thrombocytosis are blood abnormalities and are not to be considered cancer or, specifically, bone cancer. The bone type of solitary plasmacytoma (a/k/a solitary myeloma) is a form of cancer consistent with bone cancer. The soft tissue type of solitary plasmacytoma is not a type of bone cancer or the specified cancer of multiple myeloma.
(Note: Cancer of the hard palate is not bone cancer.)
d. Primary or Secondary Renal Cancers.
e. Other Diseases.
For the following diseases, the onset must have been at least five years after initial exposure at any covered facility during a covered time period:
(1) Multiple myeloma (a malignant tumor formed by the cells of the bone marrow);
(2) Lymphomas (other than Hodgkin’s disease). Waldenstrom’s macroglobulinemia is considered to be a type of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. The ICD-10 code is C88.0. Waldenstrom’s macroglobulinemia, when diagnosed by lymph node biopsy, can be called lymphoplasmacytoid lymphoma (ICD-10 codes C83.00 – C83.98).
(Note: Lymphoma Waldenstrom is used as a pseudonym for many other disorders not included as specified cancer. The acceptance of this condition as a specified cancer is to be based on the ICD
code presented in the medical evidence or upon diagnostic clarification from a physician).
(3) Primary cancer of the:
(b) Male or female breast;
(e) Pharynx – The pharynx has 3 parts – nasopharynx, oropharynx, and hypopharynx. (The oropharynx
includes the soft palate, the base of the tongue, and the tonsils);
(f) Small intestine;
(h) Bile ducts (includes Ampulla of Vater, a/k/a hepatopancreatic ampulla);
(j) Salivary gland;
(k) Urinary bladder;
(l) Brain (malignancies only)
(m) Colon (includes rectum and appendix);
(o) Liver (except if cirrhosis or hepatitis B is indicated);
If you do not meet the employment timeline and/or cancer diagnosis, then you will be required to go through the dose reconstruction process to check for eligibility for EEOICP Part B Benefits. NIOSH will estimate your work-related radiation exposure (dose reconstruction). The Department of Labor will take the results of the report to determine the Probability of Causation (PoC). The PoC shows the likelihood that the worker’s cancer was caused by exposure to radiation during employment. If your PoC is 50% or greater (which follows the “at least as likely as not” criterion), the claimant or survivor would be eligible for the financial compensation and medical benefits.
Person 1: Started working at Hanford in 1991 and was diagnosed with Colon Cancer in 2018. Because he did not meet the 250 workdays prior to 1983, the claimant would go through the dose reconstruction process. (*Did not meet the employment timeline).
Person 2: Started working at Hanford in 1963, and he was diagnosed with multiple skin cancers from 2005 through 2020 and prostate cancer in 2010. Because skin cancer and prostate cancer are not on the list of 22 SEC cancers, the claimant would go through the dose reconstruction process. (*Did not meet the cancer diagnosis requirement).
If you are approved for your Part B cancer claim, you will be awarded a lump-sum payment of $150,000 and medical benefits due to the occupational illness that resulted from the exposure to radiation.
There are certain cancers that are being awarded for EEOICP Part E benefits if they meet specific criteria. Because they do not meet the Part B criteria, you would not be eligible for the $150,000 compensation that is awarded to Part B beneficiaries. Please contact us for a free consultation to see if you qualify for benefits.
**The SEC now includes DOE contractors and subcontractors at the Hanford site from January 1, 1984, through December 31, 1990, for the required 250-day total. This SEC group excludes the following contractors from January 1, 1984, to December 31, 1990:
- Battelle Memorial Institute
- Rockwell Hanford Operations
- Boeing Computer Services
- UNC Nuclear Industries
- Westinghouse Hanford Company
- Hanford Environmental Health Foundation
If you have previously placed a claim for benefits and been denied, that does not always mean your claim is completely closed forever. You could have been denied due to incomplete paperwork. You may have been denied for primary cancer, but secondary cancer could make you eligible. It is important to check eligibility after any metastasized cancer. If you have questions about eligibility, we can assist in your claim at no cost to you. Please contact us today!
Have you had a past or current diagnosis of cancer that may qualify you for benefits and financial compensation? Please fill out our contact form or occupational questionnaire, so we can have our benefits specialist reach out to you, to help you start the process. Our assistance with the claim process does not cost you anything! Check out EEOICP Liaison Services for more information.