United States District Court, W.D. Kentucky, Paducah Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
N. Stivers, Judge.
David Houston (“Houston”) brings this action for
review of the Department of Labor's (“DOL”)
denial of his claims under Parts B and E of the Energy
Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act of
2000 (the “EEOICPA” or the “Act”), 42
U.S.C. §§ 7384-7385s-16. For the reasons stated
below, Plaintiff's claim is DENIED.
Statutory and Regulatory Background
EEOICPA provides compensation to individuals who suffer from
illnesses as a result of exposure to toxic substances during
the course of their work for the Department of Energy
(“DOE”) and its predecessor agencies. 42 U.S.C.
§ 7384. Part B of the Act entitles covered employees who
develop occupational illnesses to a lump sum payment of $150,
000.00. Id. §§ 7384s(a)(1), 7384l(7),
(15). Part E of the EEOICPA provides additional benefits to
certain DOE contractor employees for permanent impairment due
to a covered illness. Id. § 7385s(2).
Filing a Claim for Benefits
obtain benefits under Part B of the Act, a claimant must file
a claim with the Office of Workers' Compensation Programs
(“OWCP”) demonstrating that he developed an
illness due to his exposure to toxic substances while
employed at a DOE facility. Id. §§
7384l(7), 7384l(15), 7384s(a). Only three types of illnesses
are compensable under Part B: (1) certain beryllium illness,
such as chronic beryllium disease (“CBD”); (2)
certain cancers; (3) and chronic silicosis. Id.
§§ 7384s(a)(1), 7384l(7), 7384l(8), 7384l(15); 20
C.F.R. §§ 30.100, -.101.
is not compensable under Part B. Federal (EEOICPA) Procedure
Manual, Chapter 2-1000.10 (Sept. 2015). Nonetheless, the
Division of Energy Employees Occupational Illness
Compensation (“DEEOIC”) has “recognize[d]
that a diagnosis of pulmonary sarcoidosis . . . could
represent a misdiagnosis for CBD, ” which is
compensable. Id. The DEEOIC's procedure manual
therefore requires claim examiners to evaluate Part B claims
for sarcoidosis as claims for CBD if the claimant has
“a documented history of beryllium
exposure.” Federal (EEOICPA) Procedure Manual,
Chapter 2-1000.10 (Sept. 2015). As a result, a claimant with
a history of beryllium exposure who brings a sarcoidosis
claim under Part B must meet the statutory criteria necessary
to establish a claim for CBD. Id. Those criteria
(A) For diagnoses on or after January 1, 1993, beryllium
sensitivity (as established [by abnormal lymphocyte
proliferation test performed on either blood or lung lavage
cells]) together with lung pathology consistent with [CBD],
(i) a lung biopsy showing granulomas or a lymphocytic process
consistent with [CBD]
(ii) a computerized axial tomography scan showing changes
consistent with [CBD]; or
(iii) pulmonary function or exercise testing showing
pulmonary deficits consistent with [CBD].
(B) For diagnoses before January 1, 1993, the presence of-
(i) occupational or environmental history, or epidemiologic
evidence of beryllium exposure; and
(ii) any three of the following criteria:
(I) Characteristic chest radiographic (or computed tomography
(II) Restrictive or obstructive lung physiology testing or
diffusing lung ...