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About AF_Comm_Vet

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    E-3 Seaman

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  • Service Connected Disability
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  1. Nope.... I went down that dead end three weeks after my QTC conducted C&P was complete, I initially tried pulling it using the VHA Blue Button System, and later via direct call to the VBA. I was told that the QTC exam is not part of my medical history, it is strictly evidentiary (I'm paraphrasing) and that it must be requested as part of the C-File in its entirety. I asked if I could view my C-File directly at the regional office (a short two hour drive, no problem for me), that request was met with laughter and was informed (by the Peggy Mafia) that they "don't do that". Only two options to obtain the QTC exam results remained - Standard Snail-Mail request and through the FOIA process. I determined that FOIA would be the fastest route and submitted the request in mid-July. After seven months of waiting I finally gave up and submitted my claim (after the IMO was complete). My claim made a magical transformation from "Review" on a Monday to "Notification" in a span of only seven days. The same day the decision was made (Denied) the status of the FOIA request also moved to "Notification"; amazing coincidence. At this point I'm being repetitive and don't have anything new to add until I have the denial letter (or C-File) in-hand. Just wanted to add my two cents on my experience in trying to pull a QTC exam.
  2. Berta, You hit the nail on the with that statement. The very reason I filed the FOIA in August was to obtain the QTC provided x-ray and diagnosis of my Lumbar Spine injury. Little did I know that this would become critical evidence when I later needed to create a NEXUS for the Cervical condition in Nov-Dec. I truly believe that I was placed at a disadvantage by having the QTC exam withheld until after the claim was denied, and I find it highly suspect that the claim went from review to denial in only five days and the FOIA containing the QTC results was provided only HOURS after they denied the claim. Had the IMO physician had the QTC results in-hand he could directly reference the document forcing the RO to accept the in-service injury correlation between the Lumbar and Cervical spine conditions. My question Berta, should I consider just re-opening the claim? I could upload the QTC results as "new and additional evidence"; then submit a sworn statement that the QTC results are considered as a new evidentiary exhibit referenced in the IMO. Through a 'de nova' the RO would have to justify completely ignoring their own QTC diagnosis and its physician documented relationship to the new condition in order to again deny the claim. I considered re-opening as a CUE but feel the bar is too high; I don't have any hard evidence that they "purposely" tried to derail my case based on the FOIA delay, and "conspiracy-theory speculations on my part probably wont get any traction beyond drawing laughter at the VARO.
  3. Berta: Thanks for the comprehensive reply. I am not quite sure I am following you on all your points. Let me provide some more details to fill the holes - - The physician that provided the cervical IMO utilized my own copy of my SMR, my ER reports from my accident, my current medical records/diagnosis for my cervical condition, and the VA rating approval letter for my Lumbar condition. He was unable to actually view the results of the previous lumbar C&P exam as we are still waiting on the C-File. As previously noted he did provide a NEXUS for the cervical condition based on the accident that caused the lumbar injury, the lack of the previous lumbar C&P exam results had no bearing on his new diagnosis and nexus. - Should I have filed the Cervical Injury as a 'secondary' condition to the lumbar injury? I wish I had the answer to that one ! I decided to play it safe and file it as a "new' condition since as a layperson I didn't feel I had the knowledge to make that call, I'm starting to wonder if that was a mistake. - Not sure what you mean by the hamster wheel. I would extrapolate that it means to be caught in the VA house of mirrors where each apparent turn twists the veteran down another hallway with no exit. LATE BREAKING NEWS - My Senatorial Request to assist with my "lost" FOIA just hit the fan. Just noticed on EBENEFITS that my "Congressional FOIA Request" has moved from "Under Review" to "Complete" . Interestingly enough the date the FOIA was completed was the SAME day as my cervical claim denial !!! Hmmmmmmm, perhaps the Cervical Claim "denial" was a "payback" for involving my Senator in the FOIA (or perhaps I am just imagining the black helicopters hovering above). The good news is that I will soon have my C-File in hand and can take a hard look at the evidence considered and the RO's legal basis for the denial. I'm just hoping that they copied the C-File AFTER the Cervical claim denial information was placed In the database. If not I will need to start another FOIA request
  4. First - Thank You Broncovet for you input, noted and absorbed. For Berta: I don't have the paperwork in-hand yet, I was able to determine status by poking around on ebenefits after seeing the status change, found the "not service connected" determination on the page listing historical and current disabilities. I did contact the physician who wrote the IMO, he verbally rolled his eyes and doubted the RO even read his report. Please note that I filed a FOIA for my complete C-File in July 2015; the delivery of the document is still pending. I requested assistance from my Senatorial representative in late Jan, his FOAI request is also still pending. Perhaps its better that the FOIA was delayed, when it is delivered it should include the information on this submission and the subsequent denial. As soon as I have hard copy in-hand I will post for you Thanks
  5. - Filed a year ago for a lumbar spine condition caused by a severe auto accident in-service. After an initial denial, the claim was finally approved after doing a re-open and submitting an new IME. The NEXUS was made between the Lumbar spine injury and accident based on civilian ER reports where I was transported. Was scheduled for a C&P exam prior to decision, and the C&P physician actually rated higher than I expected (after doing X-rays) at 40%. - Several years ago I started having headaches, neck stiffness, and occasional Pins & needles in the arm, not severe or constant so blew it off. Four months ago it became severe, started missing work left and right, and pain prevented even sleep without heavy meds. Was referred to an Orthopedic doc and later an Ortho Surgeon. MRI's and X-rays were accomplished in Jan with bad news, severe degenerated discs and cervical bone structure. The Surgeon said this was pretty severe for my age, and after describing the accident he agreed it was likely the cause of the damage which had been brewing for years. - Filed a FDC for Cervical Spondylosis and degenerative cervical disease. I referenced the earlier evidence of the accident in-service. I also had a thorough IMO done by one of the Physicians mentioned in the forums often (not including the name), the IMO was very thorough with a NEXUS statement and citing previous cases. Submitted the FDC in Early Feb. Well, I after I saw the FDC move from Review to Decision process les than tend days after submitting I became concerned. Sure enough, it was returned denied as "Not Service Connected". OK, I get it....an IMO doesn't guarantee anything, but based on my evidence and previous related injury I thought I would at least be granted a C&P before the case would be tossed back in my face. Any thoughts?? Thanks
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