There is a lot here to devour.......what caught my eye is a potential pilot program of BVA LJs assessing appeals that are about 5 years old, but assessing them at the RO level prior to transfer...at least I think that is what Ben means...I will check with him.
This is where the backlog begins....at the RO level. I have been saying for a few years now that it would be Wonderful if the BVA had satellite lawyers at every RO to make sure these claims that are set for BVA transfer, should be worked on more at the RO level, thereby potentially stopping the need for endless remands...which are often re-dos of what the RO should have done in the first place.
If all the BVA did was to prepare the I-8,at the ROs , that too would immediately show them if something still needs to be done at the RO level.A blank I-8 is here somewhere. It is a check list, did VA do this, or that etc etc and some RO lacky sits there checking off Yes when the answer might well be No
I also think there should be some sort of digitalized system that when a rater makes an error that causes more problems for the claimant, specifically if they fail to consider probative evidence, that too could be caught to the RO level by any paralegal or BVA attorney,since the decisions contain a code that can identify each rater, they should be canned if they make too many mistakes.VA certainly is able find out who they are. That too would help eliminate the backlog which the ROs caused, not the BVA nor veterans.
Also with perhaps a BVA lawyer- even one- checking into appeals at the RO levels before a formal transfer to BVA, maybe that fact alone would inspire our vet reps to do a better job right from the git go...............
Just to add, here is the Diabetes Mellitus Training Letter,courtesy of Asknod's site---our links here don't seem to be working for it:
And here are two of discussions we have had here on DMII. If you put Diabetes Mellitus into the hadit search feature above, lots will pop up.
" The VA said that I had a metabolic disorder & most organs that produce hormones are compromised or have stopped working altogether (i.e.) pancreas, prostrate & thyroid and & they say it is all caused by Agent Orange for which I was diagnosed in 1980. "
Do you mean you were diagnosed in 1980 with DMII?
Did VA treat you for DMII since the diagnosis?
It can certainly affect the pancreas but I am unsure of the nexus to thyroid or prostate problems.
It would take an IMO/IME to support a secondary claim if ,in fact, the DMII caused these additional problems.
Unless you mean after " The VA said"..above that the VA has actually documented that opinion in your medical records.
"I am continuing to have additional problems that I guess are related to this MESS. Can anyone let me know what the Benefit amount range should be 20% doesn't seem quite right.? " You can check the DMII rating in our VA Schedule of ratings here. I think it is might be correct because diabetes does not kill anyone...it's complications do. And the rating schedule often involves secondary ratings ,if the DMII affects other organs etc etc.
Such as if the DMII caused a stroke ( highly possible) then they would rate for the stroke separately as secondary to the diabetes.
I posted the VA train Letter on DMII here not long ago. I will try to find it and post link here.
The older 1997 TL was far more detailed but they rescinded that one. I used the older one to proof my dead husband had DMII from AO and he had never been diagnosed or treated for it,yet all of his med care came from the VA.
The VA never rated it but agreed it had contributed to his death.
I raised that in an appeal I have, but has nothing to do with the appeal.Maybe I should CUE them and ask for a DMII rating.
You said AO , so you are an incountry Vietnam veteran...
Did the VA ever deny the DMII as SC in the past on any older rating you got?