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Steve G.

Seaman
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About Steve G.

  • Rank
    E-3 Seaman

Previous Fields

  • Service Connected Disability
    70%
  • Branch of Service
    Air Force
  • Hobby
    Ham Radio, Sci Fi

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  1. Question - Doesn't this apply? Diastolic pressure predominantly 100 or more; OR ..... OR if a person has a non-compensable blood pressure reading, but has a history of diastolic pressure predominantly 100 or more prior to it being controlled by medication, and there is a need for continuous use of medication to keep the blood pressure under control— 10% I would think that a military record of readings in excess of Diastolic > 100 (and also meeting the frequency and timing req's) and continuously requiring medications would lead to a rating of at least 10%. Potentially more if the historical readings were higher.
  2. Long time reader, looking for advice/help - I may have screwed up, but last Sept I filed what I was convinced was a slam-dunk CUE. In short, back in 1992 I was rated at 30% for - "Hypertension was diagnosed from 1983 with persistently high blood pressure reading.... Continuous medication is required for control of blood pressure." ... "[Arthrosclerotic] cardiovascular disease with myocardial infarction, four vessel coronary artery bypass grafting and hypertension." Later ratings in 2008 and 2012 used the same language "coronary artery bypass grafting and hypertension." I included copies of my SMR showing several instances (5 shown) where I had multiple readings where I was above the levels authorizing both 10% and 20% ratings and also Note 3 from the VA's rating criteria where it states that "Evaluate hypertension separately from hypertensive heart disease and other types of heart disease." Looked like a shoo-in. In Mar of this year I received the following response - "The Rating Criteria prior to 1998 prohibited granting a separate evaluation for hypertension and heart disease. Hypertension was part of the evaluation criteria for the heart. so it would have been pyramiding to give a separate for the heart and hypertension. While service treatment records show you had a compensable elevated blood pressure readings at the time of the 1992 Rating we were unable to grant a separate compensable evaluation for hypertension and heart disease. The law was changed in 1998 and a separate evaluation for hypertension and heart was allowed. Rating Decision dated January 5. 2012 explained that a separate evaluation for hypertension wasn't warranted unless your symptoms were compensable." OK, I get it, HPT wasn't rated separately until 1998 so I couldn't receive any additional rating until after 1998. The part I don't get is the last sentence. I have to show current symptoms? I was always under the impression that while a rating could and would change due to on-going symptom changes/deteriorations, but that the intitlement had to originally show in the SMR. I definately had not only sufficient symptoms in my records, but also a diagnosis that "Continuous medication is required for control of blood pressure" (this alone should equal a 10% rating.) I haven't been able to address this for the last couple of months due to on-going personal/family issues, but I would like to file a NOD as soon as possible if my reasoning is correct. Am I missing something here? Or are there other factors that I'm missing? Thanks for any help/advice.
  3. Thanks for the info. I was recently turned down on CUE request because the req to rate HPB separately happened a couple of years after my initial rating and all my HPB readings from that point on were normal. Apparently my in-service readings no longer counted (I'm working on that separately).. Although I have been currently diagnosed with Sleep Apnea, and am under treatment (CPAP, provided by the VA). everything I've seen is that you have to prove you either were diagnosed or had several of the symptoms prior to separation. The only thing I've got is a medical history of Heart disease, a couple of pictures of me with a fat neck, my uniform shirt from my separation, size 19, worn with a neck stretcher, a vague recollections of being told I snored a lot during overnight exercises and training. I'd like to try to claim it but I think it will take some real creative writing on the part of my current Doc's and a bit of luck. Thanks again for the help and suggestions, still working on several issues. Steve G. MSGT, USAF Ret
  4. Just a quick note re: retro payments. A few years ago, I managed to get my disability rate bumped from 40 to 70%. The effective date was a couple of years earlier. I received 2 retro pymts, one from VA for the extra %, and one from DFAS for what I couldn't before my % went over 50%. You should probably get that extra you're looking from DFAS, separately. (Eventually)
  5. Can someone tell me when sleep apnea was added to the schedular? Although I'm convinced I most likely had it when I was still active, I don't think anyone had heard of in 1991 so was never diagnosed. I was just turned down for a separate rating for high blood pressure (a separate issue for another topic soon) because the separate rating was added in 1998 after my time in service. This led me to wonder if this affects sleep apnea claims. FTR, I was diagnosed w/ SA several years ago and never bothered to try to claim it due the length of time and the VA's such helpful attitude. The VA did cover my CPAP machine, so they do help some. Thanks for the help - Steve G. USAF Msgt, retired 1991 Currently rated at 70%
  6. Can someone tell me when sleep apnea was added to the schedular? Although I'm convinced I most likely had it when I was still active, I don't think anyone had heard of in 1991 so was never diagnosed. I was just turned down for a separate rating for high blood pressure (a separate issue for another topic soon) because the separate rating was added in 1998 after my time in service. This led me to wonder if this affects sleep apnea claims. FTR, I was diagnosed w/ SA several years ago and never bothered to try to claim it due the length of time and the VA's such helpful attitude. The VA did cover my CPAP machine, so they do help some. Thanks for the help - Steve G. USAF Msgt, retired 1991 Currently rated at 70%
  7. Check out the following thread - A number of us are frustrated with the same thing -
  8. Steve G.

    No Retro!

    Is my understanding of this issue totally incorrect ? Unless I'm totally missing the point, when a retired vet's disability rating is under 50%, that amount is deducted, dollar for dollar, from that vet's retirement pay. The neccessary information flows from the VA to RPC (DFAS) on the dollar amount. Once the rating is above 50% (possibly/probably due to an increase in the rating, a process that we all know takes from 9 to 90 months), the veteran automatically becomes elegible for CRDP and the only thing the RPC needs to know is that the vet is receiveing a disability payment/rating above 50% so they can deduct the CRDP offset (currently mine is $5.00). Again the neccessary information flows from the VA to RPC. At no time that I am aware of, does the VA adjust disability payments due to any receipt of retirement pay, the adjustment has always been the other way, retired pay is adjusted due to VA payments. So, again unless I've been misinformed, there are 2 potential retro payment processes and/or amounts. RPC payments due to CRSC/CRDP eligibility and VA payments due to effective disability rates. At least for me, the RPC process seems to have worked well, a change of VA Disabiltity rating was received sometime prior to 13 Jan, 2012, the RPC issued an adjusted retirement statement reflecting CRDP eligibility showing new dollar amounts on 13 Jan, 2012. I actually received both an increased retirement paymeny amount due to being CRDP eligible, and my increased VA disability payment on 1 Feb 2012. On 29 Feb 2012, RPC issued an adjusted statement and gave me a retro payment for my CRDP eligibilty. To date, since receiving my "yellow" envelope in late Jan, I have received nothing from the VA regarding my retro payment from them. Again, to my understanding, the only factors concerning this payment are the rating level and amount due for that level for each month since my initial filing for an increase. Nothing from the RPC will affect that. This retro payment should be nothing more than a minor accounting function. With this in mind, the following statement from your IRIS makes no sense and is totally incorrect, I still am not aware of any process for RPC to affect or withhold any amount from VA compensation, it always works the other way, VA compensation affects, and may offset (and effectively be withheld from) RPC payments. Again, potential retro payment should be nothing more than a minor accounting function and be computed and paid promptly. >>> If your RPC determines the withholdings from your VA compensation should be retroactively adjusted due to CRSC/CRDP eligibility; we will conduct a review, and if we determine a retroactive payment is due, we will process this payment accordingly. <<< Ain't government bureaucracies wonderful ??
  9. Steve G.

    No Retro!

    Just a quick update for all - Today I received my retro CRDP from DFAS. Not as good as the disability retro I'm expecting, but not bad. It will help carry me over while I'm waiting. 1 Feb, 2012 - first increased disability payment amount (on Sep 2010 claim) 5 Mar, 2012 - DFAS payed CRDP retro VA retro - ??? Still no word from the VA, but I hold out hope! I also still don't understand what the VA needs from DFAS, disability payments don't have anything to do with what I receive from DFAS. If anything, I thought it worked the other way. It seemed to for ratings under 50% where DFAS offsets retirement pay by the amount of the disability payment. See my earlier email re: repayement to the VA of an overpayment by the VA. Luck and good fortune to all - Steve G.
  10. Steve G.

    No Retro!

    I've been following this as was recently upgraded from 40% to 70% (only a 17 month process). But I'm confused concerning the back and forth to DFAS. Which retro are we talking about, VA or DFAS ? Unless I'm totally mistaken (not unusual) the VA disability (including any retro payments) have nothing to do with my retired pay status and should not require any input from DFAS. I received my new higher disability payment on 1 Feb and would expect the ~17 month retro payments shortly. Or am dreaming ?? Now with the upgrade over 50%, I'm now eligible for CRDP and received that upgrade also on 1 Feb. I would expect my 17 month retirement pay retro payments to have to go through the process you described and don't expect to see anything for some time. But I don't see any reason for the VA to have to audit my DFAS account to compute or pay a VA disability. Is this correct or am I trying to apply some logic to a bunch of federal bureaucracies ? As an aside, I'm probably too optimistic, several years ago I had a VA overpayment problem (my fault, a couple of status changes I didn't think to report) and while I was able to resolve that to the VA's satisfaction and repaid the "overpayment", I have never been able to get a refund if the (then) DFAS underpayment that resulted (I was rated at 40% then so all my VA payments were offset from my retired pay). Some local counselor's have advised me that this isn't unusual and the only way they've seen to resolve this issue was to go Congressional. Thanks for all your input and help.
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