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Elimination of Copayment for Smoking Cessation Counseling

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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Department of Veterans Affairs.


Final rule.


This rule adopts as final, without change, the interim final rule published in the Federal Register (70 FR 22595) on May 2, 2005. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is publishing this final rule to designate smoking cessation counseling (individual and group sessions) as a service that is not subject to copayment requirements.


Effective Date: January 17, 2006.

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Eileen P. Downey, Program Analyst, Policy Development, Chief Business Office (16), (202) 254-0347 or Dr. Kim Hamlet-Berry, Director, Public Health National Prevention Program, Veterans Health Administration, 810 Vermont Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20420, (202) 273-8929. (These are not toll-free numbers).

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An interim final rule amending VA's medical regulations to set forth a rule designating smoking cessation counseling (individual and group sessions) as a service that is not subject to copayment requirements was published in the Federal Register on May 2, 2005 (70 FR 22595).

We provided a 60-day comment period that ended July 1, 2005. Twelve comments were received and all supported the rule. Based on the rationale set forth in the interim final rule, we now adopt the interim final rule as a final rule.

Administrative Procedure Act

In the May 2, 2005, Federal Register notice, we determined that there was a basis under the Administrative Procedure Act for issuing the interim final rule with immediate effect. We invited and received public comment on the interim final rule. This document merely affirms the interim final rule as a final rule without change.

Unfunded Mandates

The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 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 the 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 one year. This final rule would have no such effect on State, local, and tribal governments, or on the private sector.

Paperwork Reduction Act

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

Regulatory Flexibility Act

The Secretary 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, 5 U.S.C. 601-612. This final rule will not directly affect any small entities. Only individuals could be directly affected. Accordingly, pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 605(b), this final rule is exempt from the initial and final regulatory flexibility analysis requirements of sections 603 and 604.

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Numbers

The Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance numbers and titles 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; 64.018, Sharing Specialized Medical Resources; 64.019, Veterans Rehabilitation Alcohol and Drug Dependence; 64.022, Veterans Home Based Primary Care; and 64.024, VA Homeless Providers Grant and Per Diem Program.

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List of Subjects in 38 CFR Part 17

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Approved: November 22, 2005

Gordon H. Mansfield,

Deputy Secretary of Veterans Affairs.

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Accordingly, the interim final rule amending 38 CFR part 17, which was published at 70 FR 22595 on May 2, 2005, is adopted as a final rule without change.

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[FR Doc. 06-373 Filed 1-13-06; 8:45 am]