Rachel P. Leiton, director of the DEEOIC program, submitted EEOICPA Transmittal No. 17-07 in September 2017. The purpose of the Transmittal is to notify personnel at both the district offices and final adjudication branch that a new version of the procedure manual (Version 1.1) will be published shortly.
Judging from the content of this transmittal, it appears that the changes will involve Chapter 15 which is to be renamed “Establishing Toxic Substance Exposure and Causation”.
These alterations include clarification on terms such as “Toxic Substances”, “Health Effects”, and the role of a Toxicologist when they perform a review, among others. There will be further provisions added regarding how Claims Examiners (CE) are supposed to use the Site Exposure Matrix. There will also be changes regarding how a CE is supposed to look into causation links, the connection between a worker’s illness and their exposure to a toxic substance.
It is too early to tell what sort of impact the new Procedure Manual will have toward the adjudication process of pursuing EEOICPA Part B and Part E claims. These changes may signal more stringent or more strict policies on the subject of demonstrating causation and the latter is more likely.