Department of Health and Human Services with stylized eagle made up of silhouetted human faces C D C
Department of Health and Human Services
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)
Search NIOSH NIOSH Home NIOSH Topics Site Index Databases and Information Resources NIOSH Products Contact Us

NIOSH Program Area:

Radiation Dose Reconstruction

 

Dose Reconstruction

DCAS is responsible for conducting occupational radiation dose reconstructions for certain workers with cancer who file claims for compensation under The Act. In accordance with the methods published in 42 CFR 82, dose reconstructions will be performed for covered employees with cancer who are not members of a Special Exposure Cohort (SEC). As defined in The Act, SEC members with certain specified cancers do not require dose reconstructions to qualify for compensation.

The basic principle of dose reconstruction is to characterize the occupational radiation environment to which workers were exposed using available worker and/or workplace monitoring information. In cases where radiation exposures in the workplace environment can not be fully characterized based on available data, default values based on reasonable scientific assumptions are used as substitutes.

The results of worker dose reconstructions will be used by the Department of Labor to determine the probability that a worker's cancer was "at least as likely as not" due to his or her occupational exposure to ionizing radiation during employment at a covered facility. Criteria and guidelines for making this determination are established by The Act and HHS under 42 CFR 81 [this document in PDF PDF 184 KB (20 pages)].

Dose Reconstruction Final Rule

Final Rule: Methods for Radiation Dose Reconstruction under The Act--42 CFR 82
this document in PDF PDF 129 KB (23 pages)

Public Comments on the Dose Reconstruction Final Rule

Top of Page

Dose Reconstruction Production

In the early years of the NIOSH Dose Reconstruction Program it was not unusual for many of the dose reconstructions to take several years to complete. DOL began accepting claim applications on July 31, 2001, and sent the first batch of cases to NIOSH on October 11, 2001, for dose reconstruction. However, the responsibilities given to NIOSH for this compensation program were new to the agency at that time. These cases were being sent to NIOSH before the necessary infrastructure, rules and regulations, technical documents, and other processes and procedures required for dose reconstruction were in place.

Through the development of more than 250 technical documents (Site Profiles, Technical Basis Documents, and Technical Information Bulletins); the development of efficient methods, tools, and techniques; and the standardization of the methods, procedures, and reports used in dose reconstruction, NIOSH's dose reconstruction program has matured over time. As a result, the average number of days needed to process dose reconstructions for initial referrals (see Figure 1), the number of cases received in 2001 from DOL that do not have an initial dose reconstruction (see Figure 2), and the number of cases greater than two years old at NIOSH (see Figure 3) have all decreased.

The dose reconstruction processing timeline example (see Figure 4) shows steps involved in the dose reconstruction process from the initial receipt of the case from DOL to the submission of the Final Dose Reconstruction Report to the claimant(s) and DOL.

The average number of days to process dose reconstructions in FY2002 was 1024 days, with a decreasing trend until reaching 204 days in 2008.
Figure 1: Average days to process for cases initially referred by DOL in each year. Reported time is the time, in days, between referral from DOL and the return of a final dose reconstruction report to DOL. There is no year for which all the returned cases are done, so if reported at a different date, average processing times will likely be different.


The number of cases received in 2001 where an initial dose reconstruction was not conducted was 1154 cases in 2002, with a decreasing trend until reaching only 2 cases in FY2008.
Figure 2: Number of cases referred to NIOSH for dose reconstruction in 2001 that remain at NIOSH on a particular date. Cases are removed by sending the claimant a dose reconstruction or pulling the case from dose reconstruction. Cases returned for a revised dose reconstruction are not included.


The number of cases that have been at NIOSH for more than 2 years was 928 cases in 2004, with a decreasing trend until reaching 503 cases by 1/1/2009.
Figure 3: Number of cases referred to NIOSH for dose reconstruction that remain at NIOSH for more than 2 years as of a particular date. Cases are removed by sending the claimant a dose reconstruction or pulling the case from dose reconstruction. Cases returned for a revised dose reconstruction are not included.


The dose reconstruction timeline begins with the initial receipt of the case from DOL and ends with the submission of the Final Dose Reconstruction Report to the claimant(s) and DOL.
Figure 4:
*Arrows and brackets are representative, not exact timing; points along the line are representative, not equal units of time.
**DOE is committed to providing a response on a records request within 60 days; response may indicate only how they are proceeding in fulfilling the request for information, not the transmittal of the actual records.
***Claimant(s) has 60 days to return OCAS-1 form(s); grace period of 14 days if not returned within 60 days.

Dose Reconstruction Processing Timeline Example (larger version)
this document in PDF PDF 46 KB (1 page)

Top of Page

Conflict or Bias Policy and Disclosure Statements

Disclosure and exclusion of conflicts and biases (COBs) ensures and maximizes the quality, objectivity, utility, and integrity of all scientific information disseminated by NIOSH pursuant to its responsibilities under EEOICPA. Achieving the highest level of scientific information quality is a core value for NIOSH, CDC, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

It is therefore crucial, for employees and corporate entities that perform any key program function or program support function for NIOSH pursuant to its responsibilities under EEOICPA, to fully disclose all past, current, or planned future employment-related relationships, financial relationships, familial relationships, or supervisory or subordinate work relationships that could pose a COB. If such a COB is found, the individual or corporate entity is to be excluded from performing any key program function.

To view more information on this topic, please visit our Conflict or Bias Policy and Disclosure Statements Web page.

Top of Page

Changes to the Dose Reconstruction Target Organ Selection for Lymphoma


Federal Register Notice: Changes to the Dose Reconstruction Target Organ Selection for Lymphoma Under the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act of 2000
(February 15, 2006)
this document in PDF PDF 133 KB (2 pages)

NIOSH has changed the selection of target organs used in dose reconstructions NIOSH produces under the EEOICPA for energy employees with lymphoma cancers. This change responds to an evaluation by NIOSH of current scientific data on lymphoma, which revealed that the site of the radiation injury can differ from the site of the tumor or cancer origin documented in the medical files of a lymphoma cancer patient. The new process for selecting dose reconstruction target organs for energy employees with lymphoma cancers includes selecting the target organ that would have received the highest radiation dose from among relevant, possibly irradiated organs, as determined through the dose reconstruction process, when the identity of the target organ is in question. This change may result in the Department of Labor calculating higher probability of causation determinations for select lymphoma cases among previously decided and current EEOICPA cancer claims.

Top of Page

Dose Reconstruction Implementation Guidelines

The purpose of the guidelines is to provide basic information on the methods used in reconstructing doses under EEOICPA. The intent of these guidelines is to assist qualified health physicists in determining annual organ dose from exposure to various sources of radiation. Because not all possible exposure scenarios can be foreseen, these guidelines do not provide step by step instructions for how the dose reconstruction should be performed.

General Guidelines
  • External Dose Reconstruction Implementation Guideline
    this document in PDF PDF 423 KB (77 pages)

    Document Number: OCAS-IG-001 Rev-03

    About this Document: Provides guidance on the components, standards, and methods of external radiation dose reconstruction for probability of causation calculations in support of the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act (EEOICPA). Used as a source to help provide specific guidance and methods which can be found in site profiles and other site-specific documents.

    Approved: November 21, 2007


  • Internal Dose Guidelines
    this document in PDF PDF 291 KB (50 pages)

    Document Number: OCAS-IG-002 Rev-00

    About this Document: Provides basic information on the methods employed in reconstructing doses under the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act of 2000 (EEOICPA).

    Approved: August 12, 2002


  • Radiation Exposures Covered for Dose Reconstructions under Part B of the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act
    (Revised October 5, 2010)
    this document in PDF PDF 112 KB (11 pages)

    Document Number: DCAS-IG-003 Rev-00

    About this Document: Provides guidance as to which sources of radiation are to be included in dose reconstructions that are prepared by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) under Part B of the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act (EEOICPA).

    Approved: October 5, 2010


  • Use of Classified Information
    (January 7, 2011)
    this document in PDF PDF 184 KB (10 pages)

    Document Number: DCAS-IG-005 Rev-00

    About this Document: Provides guidelines for the use of classified information relevant to Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act (EEOICPA).

    Approved: January 7, 2011


  • The Use of Data from Other Facilities in the Completion of Dose Reconstructions Under EEOICPA
    this document in PDF PDF 58 KB (11 pages)

    Document Number: OCAS-IG-004 Rev-00

    About this Document: Provides guidelines for the use of data from other facilities in the completion of dose reconstructions.

    Approved: August, 21, 2008

Top of Page


Reports and Procedures for Completing Site Specific Dose Reconstructions
  • Feasibility of Reconstructing Doses Received from Potential Exposures to Polonium at Savannah River Site
    this document in PDF PDF 110 KB (11 pages)

    Document Number: ORAUT-RPRT-0048 Rev-00

    About this document: This report describes activities performed by the Savannah River Site (SRS) related to the design of processes and facilities for separating 210Po from 210Bi with the objective of determining the feasibility of reconstructing internal and external doses potentially received from exposures to polonium. Incorporates NIOSH formal review comments.

    Approved: January 24, 2011

Top of Page

Policy Documents

  • Data Access and Interview Procedures
    this document in PDF PDF 301 KB (14 pages)

    Document Number: OCAS-PR-010 Rev-00

    About this Document: Initial version of procedure describing the coordination and submission of data requests to the Department of Energy.

    Approved: January 23, 2009


  • Department of Energy Classification Review of Documents
    this document in PDF PDF 38 KB (6 pages)

    Document Number: OCAS-PR-011 Rev-00

    About this Document: Initial version of procedure describing the Department
    of Energy review of OCAS documents.

    Approved: January 22, 2009


  • Handling Controlled Unclassified Information
    this document in PDF PDF 74 KB (17 pages)

    Document Number: OCAS-PLCY-0001 Rev-00

    About this Document: New document to establish guidelines for the handling of sensitive documents and information.

    Approved: January 22, 2009

Top of Page

Dose Reconstruction Program Video

NIOSH has developed a 15 minute video to educate energy workers, their survivors, and authorized representatives about dose reconstruction and the overall dose reconstruction program. It provides answers to the most frequently asked questions that NIOSH receives from its claimants, as well as general information about the NIOSH claims process.

The video is intended to provide a basic understanding of this complex, scientific program to those who have a claim undergoing dose reconstruction. After watching the video, NIOSH hopes the audience has a better understanding of dose reconstruction and the dose reconstruction process, and recognizes that the NIOSH dose reconstruction program is grounded in sound, scientific methods that give the benefit of the doubt to the worker whenever possible.

Obtaining copies of the video: You can view the Dose Reconstruction Program Video by clicking on the link below. Hard copies of the video are also available by request. The video is available in the following formats: DVD (can be played on DVD players and some computers), CD-ROM (computer), and VHS. If you are interested in receiving a copy of the video, please send your name, mailing address, number of copies, and video format(s) you would like to dcas@cdc.gov or ocas@cdc.gov. You can also contact us toll-free at 1-877-222-7570 or directly at 513-533-6800 to request a copy of the video.

Please click the link below to start the video:

A transcript of the video is also available:

Top of Page

Quality Assurance/Quality Control (QA/QC) Activities

DCAS' Quality Assurance (QA) program involves all of the planned and systematic activities incorporated within the DCAS organizational structure, procedures, processes, and resources needed to implement EEOICPA (The Act). DCAS has integrated Quality Control into all aspects of the NIOSH dose reconstruction program. Quality Control involves operational activities aimed at systems and processes developed to ensure the quality of our dose reconstructions.

QA/QC Page

Top of Page

Proposed Data Collections Submitted for Public Comment and Recommendations

In compliance with the requirement of section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 for opportunity for public comment on proposed data collection projects, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will publish periodic summaries of proposed projects. To request more information on the proposed projects or to obtain a copy of the data collection plans and instruments, call the CDC Reports Clearance Officer on (404) 639-7090.

Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology. Send comments to Anne O'Connor, CDC Assistant Reports Clearance Officer, 1600 Clifton Road, MS-D24, Atlanta, GA 30333. Written comments should be received within 60 days of this notice.

Federal Register Notice
this document in PDF  PDF 36 KB (2 pages)

Top of Page

Updates to Scientific Elements of NIOSH Dose Reconstructions

As appropriate, NIOSH may update certain scientific elements of the dose reconstructions, as allowed under 42 CFR 82, to ensure NIOSH dose reconstructions are current with important scientific progress affecting dose reconstructions. If you wish to submit recommendations for such updates, you can e-mail recommendations as a MS Word or WordPerfect attachment to DCAS at dcas@cdc.gov or ocas@cdc.gov or mail recommendations addressed to:

National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Division of Compensation Analysis and Support
4676 Columbia Parkway
Mailstop R-45
Cincinnati, Ohio 45226

Top of Page

Dose Reconstruction Contractor Information

  • Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU)

    On April 27, 2009, NIOSH awarded a one-year contract, with four one-year options, to ORAU to support NIOSH's responsibilities under EEOICPA. The contractor will work directly with DCAS to provide services in the following areas:

    1. Database management;

    2. Data collection related to claims and petitions;

    3. Dose reconstruction research;

    4. Work History Phone Calls with Claimants

    5. Dose estimation and reporting; and

    6. Technical and program management support.

    This is the second contract awarded to the ORAU team to support EEOICPA activities. The contract is for approximately $30 million per year. It is a competitive award based on technical and business proposals by the responding companies.

    NIOSH Press Release
    this document in PDF PDF 24 KB (1 page)

    Copy of Contract 200-2009-29263
    this document in PDF PDF 309 KB (53 pages)

Top of Page

Integrated Modules for Bioassay Analysis (IMBA)

Integrated Modules for Bioassay Analysis (IMBA) is a licensed computer software program that is used by NIOSH to calculate individual organ doses which result from the intake of radioactive material into the body. The program is based on internationally accepted models published by the International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP) and consists of several software modules created by the National Radiological Protection Board (NRPB) of the United Kingdom. These modules can be used to evaluate the biological intake, excretion and dosimetry of a wide variety of radioactive isotopes.

  • Internal Dose and Internal Dosimetry Models

    Internal dose is the radiation dose received as a result of radioactive materials entering the body through either inhalation, ingestion or absorption. Once inside the body, the radioactive material accumulates in specific organs or tissues and delivers a radiation dose to those organs or tissues. The extent to which an organ or tissue accumulates and clears radioactive material is highly dependent on the specific radioactive element or elements encountered in the workplace. This differs from external dose which is the radiation exposure received as a result of standing or working near radioactive material.

    The internal dose to various organs is calculated using mathematical models of the biological behavior of radioactive elements taken into the human body. These models, published by the Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP), describe the behavior of material as it enters, metabolizes, and leaves the body. ICRP publication 301 contains the gastrointestinal tract model and publication 662 contains the lung model. These two models are connected to a biokinetic model that varies with each element. Most models of interest to the weapons program are contained in publication 673 and 694. The models for most other elements of interest are contained in publication 30.

  • Obtaining a copy of IMBA

    IMBA contains licensed software modules. DCAS has obtained a license for use of IMBA by DCAS, and its contractors. Other individuals who wish to obtain a copy of IMBA must contact the vendor. The vendor for the Americas and Pacific Rim countries is ACJ and Associates, Inc.
    External Link: http://www.acj-associates.com

  • Individual IMBA Requests and Questions

    DCAS recognizes that many interested parties may not know how IMBA works or understand the scientific basis for these models. To help those who wish to understand more about internal dose calculations, DCAS has established a help desk to answer questions about IMBA. The toll free number for the help desk is 1-800-322-0111. In addition, specific requests for information or for IMBA calculations can be made to NIOSH by sending an e-mail to our office at dcas@cdc.gov or ocas@cdc.gov. In your email request, please provide a return address for where a response to the requested information or IMBA calculation can be sent. All NIOSH responses to requests for information or IMBA calculations will comply with the software licensing agreements and copyright law.

    NIOSH is currently accepting one IMBA calculation request per email. The calculations will be performed using the IMBA Expert DCAS edition to calculate the dose to an organ or tissue of interest. The email request must specify the exact calculation you would like performed. The minimum information needed to process a request is listed below:

    Minimum Information Required for IMBA Request Specific Examples of What Type of Information to Include in the Request
    1. Route of intake Inhalation, Ingestion, or Injection

    Note: If inhalation, include Solubility type

     
    Note: If ingestion, include the gastrointestinal absorption value  
    2. Type of intake Acute (short duration) or Chronic (long duration)
    3. Radionuclide Uranium-234, Uranium-235, Plutonium-239, etc.
    4. Date of intake Start and stop dates for chronic exposures or date of acute exposures
    5. Either a) the intake quantity or b) the bioassay quantity from which to calculate an intake. The bioassay quantity should include the units (pCi/day, ug/L, etc.) and the date the sample was taken.
    6. Organ of Interest Lungs, Liver, Kidneys, etc.
    7. The date range for which you want the annual doses to be calculated From (year) to (year)


    A sample email request for an IMBA calculation is provided below:



  • References

    1 International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP). 1979. Limits for Intakes of Radionuclides by Workers, Part 1. ICRP Publication 30, Annals of the ICRP 2(3/4). Pergamon Press, Oxford.

    2 International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP). 1994. Human Respiratory Model for Radiological Protection. ICRP Publication 66, Annals of the ICRP 24(1-4). Elsevier Scientific Ltd., Oxford.

    3 International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP). 1993. Age Dependent Doses to Members of the Public from Intakes of Radionuclides, Part 2. ICRP Publication 67, Annals of the ICRP 22(2/3). Pergamon Press, Oxford.

    4 International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP). 1995. Age Dependent Doses to Members of the Public from Intakes of Radionuclides, Part 3: Ingestion Dose Coefficients. ICRP Publication 69, Annals of the ICRP 25(1). Elsevier Scientific Ltd., Oxford.

Top of Page

Dose Reconstruction Exposure Matrix for RECA Section 5 Claims

  • Dose Reconstruction Exposure Matrix for Radiation Exposure Compensation Act (RECA) Section 5 Claims
    this document in PDF PDF 186 KB (24 pages)

    Document Number: OCAS-RPT-002 Rev 0

    About this Document: This is a modeled exposure estimate to complete the dose reconstruction for RECA Section 5 claims forwarded by DOL to NIOSH for dose reconstruction. The combination of available personnel monitoring information and workplace exposure values contained in this exposure matrix are intended to reflect the best available estimate of radiation exposure to RECA section 5 claimants for the purpose of determination of causation. Because of the limitations in the available exposure information, it is not possible to produce a unique estimate for each individual's radiation exposure scenario. Rather, this report provides a series of matrices that can be used to bound exposures for certain defined classes of workers. Where information was sparse or incomplete, claimant favorable assumptions were used in the interpretation of these data and their subsequent translation into the exposure matrix.

    This report is intended to provide default exposure estimates when no information is available. If claimant-specific information is available for a particular claim, that information may be substituted for the default values in this matrix.

    Approved: May 2009

Top of Page

Advisory Board on Radiation and Worker Health Comments on Dose Reconstruction Documents

The Advisory Board conducts technical reviews of various DCAS guidance documents that relate to dose reconstruction. The Board's technical support contractor assists in the review process. The purpose of the reviews is to assess the scientific and technical quality of the methods used in dose reconstruction. They also help identify any deficiencies that could have a negative effect on the results or the dose reconstruction process. These reviews can be found on the Advisory Board: Reports from the Technical Support Contractor page of our Web site.

When the reviews are complete and all issues have been resolved, the Board prepares a brief summary of the resolutions. The summaries help the public understand the results of the technical reviews. These summaries can be found on the Advisory Board: Technical Review Summaries from the Technical Support Contractor page.

Top of Page

Miscellaneous Items

Top of Page

Historical Information and Archived Documents

  • Battelle

    On October 12, 2005, NIOSH awarded a one-year, task-order contract to Battelle. During the time Battelle was a contractor for NIOSH, they assisted in the dose reconstruction program by (1) evaluating and analyzing radiological data and conditions at each of the 256 work sites listed in the contract; (2) developing technical basis documents (exposure models) for the work sites where adequate radiological and work-site information exists; and (3) completing the dose reconstructions for claims from the work sites where a technical basis document has been developed. Battelle also assisted NIOSH in identifying the work sites where there was insufficient information on radiological and work site conditions.

  • Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU)

    On September 11, 2002, NIOSH awarded a five-year contract to Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU) to support NIOSH's responsibilities under EEOICPA. The contractor will work directly with DCAS to provide services in the following areas:

    1. Database management;

    2. Data collection related to claims and petitions;

    3. Dose reconstruction research;

    4. Work History Phone Calls with Claimants;

    5. Dose estimation and reporting; and

    6. Technical and program management support.

    NIOSH is currently working with ORAU to familiarize, train, and integrate their current staff into our processes and requirements in this compensation program. ORAU will have substantial additional manpower in place very soon, and we expect the number of completed dose reconstructions to increase significantly.

    Copy of Contract 200-2002-00593
    this document in PDF PDF 266 KB (41 pages)

    Copy of the attachments to the contract:

    • Attachment 1: Table 1--Examples of Information Potentially Useful for Dose Reconstruction
      this document in PDF PDF 173 KB (3 pages)

    • Attachment 2: Non-SEC Cancers Received by DOL as of November 6, 2001

      Entire document
      this document in PDF PDF 2.3 MB (4 pages)
      Pages 1-2
      this document in PDF PDF 1.1 MB (2 pages)

      Pages 3-4
      this document in PDF PDF 1.1 MB (2 pages)
    • Attachment 3: Example Script for a Claimant Work History Phone Call

      Entire document
      this document in PDF PDF 2.3 MB (14 pages)
      Pages 1-5
      this document in PDF PDF 868 KB (5 pages)

      Pages 6-10
      this document in PDF PDF 921 KB (5 pages)

      Pages 11-14
      this document in PDF PDF 521 KB (4 pages)
    • Attachment 4: Standard Form 294--Subcontracting Report for Individual Contracts
      this document in PDF PDF 526 KB (1 page)

    • Attachment 5: Standard Form 295--Summary Subcontract Report
      this document in PDF PDF 695 KB (1 page)

    • Attachment 6: CDC Staff Manual on Confidentiality

      Entire document
      this document in PDF PDF 12.8 MB (25 pages)
      Pages 1-5
      this document in PDF PDF 2.4 MB (5 pages)

      Pages 6-10
      this document in PDF PDF 3.3 MB (5 pages)

      Pages 11-14
      this document in PDF PDF 3.3 MB (5 pages)

      Pages 15-20
      this document in PDF PDF 1.6 MB (5 pages)

      Pages 21-25
      this document in PDF PDF 1.7 MB (5 pages)
    • Attachment 7: Privacy Act System Notice 09-20-0147
      this document in PDF PDF 1.2 MB (6 pages)

    • Attachment 8: Cost Plus Award Fee Evaluation Plan
      this document in PDF PDF 832 KB (7 pages)


  • Radiation Exposures Covered for Dose Reconstructions under Part B of the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act
    (Approved November 5, 2007)
    this document in PDF PDF 39 KB (11 pages)

Top of Page

Page last updated: October 11, 2012
Page last reviewed: August 10, 2013
Content Source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Division of Compensation Analysis and Support