By Tim Devaney - 02/14/14 10:41 AM EST
Next week's Federal Register contains new rules for 9/11 survivors who developed cancer and are eligible for insurance coverage, as well as rules for medical devices and geese hunting.
Here's what is happening:
Medical devices: The Food and Drug Administration is changing a rule to allow some medical devices that measure mental disorders to be used without premarket approval.
The FDA announced it is reclassifying certain neuropsychiatric devices that study the nervous system and can diagnose cases such as epilepsy, comas and brain death.
Unless otherwise noted, all such devices start out in class III, which means they require premarket approval, so the FDA can make sure they are safe and effective. But the FDA announced it is moving neuropsychiatric interpretive electroencephalograph to class II, where it does not need premarket approval.
Neuropsychiatry is a medical field that studies mental disorders stemming from problems with the nervous system. It preceded the disciplines of neurology and psychiatry, which are now separate fields of study. But some doctors still specialize in neuropsychiatry.
An electroencephalography records the brain's electric activity by placing numerous electrodes on a person's scalp.
Cancer: The World Trade Center Health Program plans to add four types of cancer to the list of cancers covered for people who were exposed because of the 9/11 terrorist strikes in New York City.
The health program will now cover certain types of brain cancer, invasive cervical cancer, pancreatic cancer and testicular cancer, which had previously been excluded from the list of "rare cancers."
People who caught one of these types of cancers after being exposed to the terrorist strikes will now be eligible for coverage.
The health program is also clarifying the definition of childhood cancers to include people who were diagnosed before the age of 20, though they do not lose eligibility if they wait to join the program until after they turn 20 years old.
The health program subsequently published rules in September 2012 and September 2013 that were "confusing and imprecise," the agency said, and led to people with these types of cancers being denied from coverage. The agency is looking to change those rules so these people will now be covered.
The health program estimates cost for covering treatment and screening costs for these types of cancers will run from $2.2 million to $4.9 million annually for the next three years.
The rule goes into effect immediately.
Geese: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is encouraging hunters to kill certain types of geese to control the rapidly expanding population. This is the third time since 1998 that the agency has introduced rules to limit the population of "light geese."
"Various populations of light geese have undergone rapid growth during the past 30 years, and have become seriously injurious to their habitat, habitat important to other migratory birds, and agricultural interests," the agency wrote. "We believe that several of these populations have exceeded the long-term carrying capacity of their breeding and/or migration habitats and must be reduced."
USPS: The U.S. Postal Service is considering revising a rule that would put the postmaster general in charge of collecting debts owed by employees by offsetting their salary. Previously, a judicial officer or hearing official was in responsible for this.