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Rule

Dental Care-Provision of One-Time Outpatient Dental Care for Certain Veterans

Action

Final Rule.

Summary

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is amending its regulations regarding the authority to provide one-time outpatient dental treatment to eligible veterans following discharge or release from active duty. In section 1709 of Public Law 110-181, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2008, Congress amended the eligibility criteria for the one-time dental treatment benefit. This rule is necessary to incorporate the statutory amendments into VA regulations.

 

Table of Contents Back to Top

DATES: Back to Top

Effective Date: October 8, 2008.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Back to Top

Tony Guagliardo, Director, Business Policy, Chief Business Office (163), Veterans Health Administration, Department of Veterans Affairs, 810 Vermont Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20420, (202) 254-0384.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Back to Top

Public Law 110-181 amended 38 U.S.C. 1712(a)(1)(B)(iii) concerning the period after discharge or release from activity duty that a veteran may apply for VA's one-time dental benefit. Under former law, veterans could apply within 90 days after such discharge or release. Under amended section 1712, veterans may apply for the benefit within 180 days after discharge or release from active duty. Congress also amended section 1712 to prescribe the 180-day application period for veterans who reentered active duty within 90 days after their prior discharge or release from active duty. Additionally, Congress prescribed the 180-day application period for veterans who have had a disqualifying discharge or release corrected by a competent authority. This document amends 38 CFR 17.161(b), to conform to the amendments made by Public Law 110-181.

Administrative Procedure Act Back to Top

This final rule merely restates or interprets statutory provisions. Accordingly, it is exempt from the prior notice-and-comment and delayed-effective-date requirements of 5 U.S.C. 553.

Unfunded Mandates Back to Top

The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act requires, at 2 U.S.C. 1532, that agencies prepare an assessment of anticipated costs and benefits before issuing any rule that may result in an expenditure by State, local, and tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of $100 million or more (adjusted annually for inflation) in any given year. This amendment would have no such effect on State, local, and tribal governments, or the private sector.

Paperwork Reduction Act Back to Top

This document contains no collections of information under the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 3501-3521).

Executive Order 12866 Back to Top

Executive Order 12866 directs agencies to assess all costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, when regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public health and safety, and other advantages; distributive impacts; and equity). The Executive Order classifies a “significant regulatory action,” requiring review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) unless OMB waives such review, as any regulatory action that is likely to result in a rule that may: (1) Have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more or adversely affect in a material way the economy, a sector of the economy, productivity, competition, jobs, the environment, public health or safety, or State, local, or tribal governments or communities; (2) create a serious inconsistency or otherwise interfere with an action taken or planned by another agency; (3) materially alter the budgetary impact of entitlements, grants, user fees or loan programs or the rights and obligations of recipients thereof; or (4) raise novel legal or policy issues arising out of legal mandates, the President's priorities, or the principles set forth in the Executive Order.

The economic, interagency, budgetary, legal, and policy implications of this final rule have been examined and it has been determined not to be a significant regulatory action under Executive Order 12866.

Regulatory Flexibility Act Back to Top

The initial and final regulatory flexibility analyses requirements of sections 603 and 604 of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601-612, are not applicable to this rule, because a notice of proposed rulemaking is not required for this rule. Even so, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs hereby certifies that this final rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities as they are defined in the Regulatory Flexibility Act. This final rule directly affects only individuals and does not directly affect small entities. Therefore, this final rule is also exempt pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 605(b) from the initial and final regulatory flexibility analyses requirements of sections 603 and 604.

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Numbers Back to Top

The Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance titles and numbers for the programs affected by this document are 64.005, Grants to States for Construction of State Home Facilities; 64.007, Blind Rehabilitation Centers; 64.008, Veterans Domiciliary Care; 64.009, Veterans Medical Care Benefits; 64.010, Veterans Nursing Home Care; 64.011, Veterans Dental Care; 64.012, Veterans Prescription Service; 64.013, Veterans Prosthetic Appliances; 64.014, Veterans State Domiciliary Care; 64.015, Veterans State Nursing Home Care; 64.016, Veterans State Hospital Care; 64.108, Sharing Specialized Medical Resources; 64.019, Veterans Rehabilitation Alcohol and Drug Dependence; 64.022, Veterans Home Based Primary Care; 64.024, VA Homeless Providers Grant and Per Diem Program; and 64.026, Veterans State Adult Day Health Care.

List of Subjects in 38 CFR Part 17 Back to Top

Approved: August 26, 2008.

Gordon H. Mansfield,

Deputy Secretary of Veterans Affairs.

begin regulatory text

For the reasons set forth in the preamble, VA amends 38 CFR part 17 as follows:

PART 17—MEDICAL Back to Top

1.The authority citation for part 17 continues to read as follows:

Authority:

38 U.S.C. 501, 1721, and as stated in specific sections.

2.In § 17.161, revise paragraphs (b)(1)(i)(B) and (b)(1)(ii) and (iii) to read as follows:

§ 17.161 Authorization of outpatient dental treatment.

* * * * *

(b) * * *

(1) * * *

(i) * * *

(B) Application for treatment is made within 180 days after such discharge or release.

* * * * *

(ii) Those veterans discharged from their final period of service after August 12, 1981, who had reentered active military service within 90 days after the date of a discharge or release from a prior period of active military service, may apply for treatment of service-connected noncompensable dental conditions relating to any such periods of service within 180 days from the date of their final discharge or release.

(iii) If a disqualifying discharge or release has been corrected by competent authority, application may be made within 180 days after the date of correction.

* * * * *

end regulatory text

[FR Doc. E8-23771 Filed 10-7-08; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 8320-01-P

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