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Everything posted by broncovet

  1. I just received battlefield accupuncture at my VAMC. The doctor put 5 pins in each ear. Yes, the pain level went down. He said the needles will fall out by themselves in a few days, or I can remove them in 5 days. Its for pain. Anyone else have this??
  2. Interesting and informative, gastone. According to my doctor at VA (who did the ears only accupuncture), they also offer it once per month on Fridays. What REALLY suprised me is VA paying for the aroma therapy, and I think I could benefit from that also. Do you use the nebulizer and put it in the air near your bed, and which essential oils do you use. The bottle, if its a mix, should show the ingredients. I would be interested in the brand name, and which one(s). There are many. My doctor never told me about accupuncture, but then offered it when I asked for "something for pain" as I am "bone on bone" on at least one knee, and am scheduled for knee replacement surgury on June 5.
  3. broncovet

    Confused about how to qualify for SMC?

    You left out the critical factor: Are you working? You can read about smc S here, which will help answer why I needed to know: https://asknod.org/2014/08/25/cavc-howell-v-nicholson-what-smc-s-really-says/ Even tho you are "not" supposed to have to request it, if applicable, yours wont be the VA's first mistake. So, go ahead and apply, especially if you meet the criteria, above. Since it does not appear you qualify via a) statuatory smc s, you may qualify for b) "housebound in fact". B normally takes a C and p exam to see if you "are essentially confined to the premesis". However, we dont know if you qualfiy for additional levels of SMC S or not, we dont know if you have "loss of use" of appendages, eyes, ears, reproductive organ (SMC K) or not. We also dont know if you need aid and attendance (SMC L) either. Apply. If denied, you can ask us how/if you should appeal.
  4. broncovet


    In regard to A and A, VA often misinterprets regs to mean you are "bedridden". The regs are carefully crafted to allow VA raters to mistake this to mean you have to be bedridden to get a and a, but its not true. Bedridden IS ONE way to get a and a, but its not the only way. The operator "OR" means that bedridden is not required, but any of the following is sufficient: Its one of the ways VA loves to lowball. Criteria for a and a: *Did you miss the "and" permanently bedridden??
  5. Yea...the VA decides when the Veteran thinks the medical care at VA is adequate. I guess the VA does not have enough control over our lives as it is....or maybe I should ask the VA if its okay if I think that???
  6. Yep, more people taking advantage of people who want to help Vets. They should donate to hadit, instead. https://www.whio.com/news/florida-man-faces-charges-alleged-veterans-charity-scam/qxWvFjMKsQ9GbGgJRRaR7O/
  7. IN my town, those so called "homeless Vets" who wait on corners with a sign, "Homeless Vet..need help", are almost all frauds. There is a van than comes to my town once a day full of people with signs..they are dropped off at different corners from a nearby town. They pick them up in 5 to 8 hours...when these people give most of their money they collected to their drug dealer..and then its back home. You arent supporting a "veteran", YOU ARE SUPPORTING SOMEONES DRUG HABIT WITH YOUR GIFT. Im not saying its a bad thing to help others..quite the opposite. You just are not helping them buy them their next hit of drugs. Buy them a meal..pay for the meal, and dont give them cash. (Most of the time they will decline the food, because what they really want is drug money). I give money to my church for "food baskets". I also pay the way for kids to go to "youth camp", and stuff like that. Just dont support anyones drug habits.
  8. I agree with Gastone. Get a lawyer. The only reason to hire a lawyer is if he makes, not costs you money. Because of your OCD you focus on the cost, not the benefits. As often said, 80 percent of something is much more than 100 percent of nothing. I have also explained that, if you hire an attorney shortly after a BVA denial, then it can cost you nothing because EAJA can/usually does pay all or most of your fees. This only works at the CAVC, and not at "other times" during the appeal process. Not everyone can do a good job representing themself. Alex even got a lawyer. I got one. Trust me, I did not hire a lawyer because I like throwing money away. My lawyer "up fronted" me the IMO fees, and I did not pay those until I got the retro. There is no doubt I would have never won my case without a lawyer. A math teacher in high school once explained it. Someone asked, "How many points do I take off for each wrong answer?"...when grading a test. "Oh, dont take any offf!!!, " he replied. "Just divide the number of right answers by the total number of questions." So, yes, you can "dwell" on the 20 percent you "lost", or you can instead "spend" the 80 percent you would have never gotten without a lawyer. You choose.
  9. Congratulations! I will answer questions but not to repeat what others say, as I agree with Berta and Buck. 1. Your retro is the "later" of the date of claim, or date the doc said you were disabled (aka known as facts found) , with some exceptions. When you get your effective date, we can try to help further to see if its correct or not, but we can not tell you what date the doc said. 2. The SMC you are eligible for mostly depends on what the doc says you have "loss of use", and whether or not you need "aid and attendance". You can check the criteria for SMC as you know your health records better than I do: https://www.law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/38/3.350 3. What the VA did a few years ago, (I dont think it changed) is to offer the depenedent the choice of the "effective date" of ch. 35. It could be your depenedent is offered either option..to get back pay for college already completed, or to start now. Your dependendent would need to send in the election form, promptly, when they send it to you. 4. I think some forms of SMC wont pay both. For example, I dont think you get A and A if you are a resident of a VA nursing home. (In other words, VA wont pay you twice for A and A, once by paying your nursing home bill and again by paying someone else to care for you. However, a spouse or family member can provide care for you and still get paid.
  10. Its pretty much the same as everything else: It should be approved if you have the evidence. The evidence would be if a doctor said that your ED is as least as likely as not due to diabetes. If he said that, you should get approved, and you should be able to read it and find that out for yourself.
  11. broncovet

    Be advisied

    Ocean posted: Altho, I dont doubt the sincerity of your statement, I have not met anyone from Argentina either, but that does not mean That people from Argentina dont exist. Instead, I think there are many Veteran friendly doctors, who sincerely want to do what is best for their patients. I have at least one such doctor, probably several. If you do not think your VA physician is acting in your best interests, you can change them. I did just that, about 8 years ago. My doc and I did not see eye to eye, and I put in a request to change my physician. At my VA, these request forms and a drop box are right near the prime care area. About 2 weeks later, I got a call from that doc. She asked why I was asking for a change. I explained some incidents where I did not think she was thorough, and did not act in my best interest. (specific examples). She promised not to do that anymore, and asked that she remain my physician. I agreed, but let her know I would not be convinced again..after that, I got every thing I asked her for without hesitation. My opinion is that she was foreign, and would be sent back to India if she lost her work visa and she may have been on probation at the VA. That is just a guess. The bottom line is you dont have to consent to be treated by someone that you think provides inferior care.
  12. broncovet

    Is this a CUE

    Once again, I learned something from Berta. Years ago, Jim Strickland had a bit about Cue, and alleged that, once a cue was filed, you could never file it again. As Berta correctly pointed out, Jim was incorrect in that it depends upon the words BVA uses to deny cue. If the cue is denied "without prejudice", then that means the Veteran can re word his cue and file it again. Great work, Berta.
  13. broncovet

    Is this a CUE

    Cue is the last resort, not the first. First, is to file a nod and dispute the VARO decision. Cue is a much higher standard of review for you to jump over, so unless you are a legal beagle and want the challenge, most people simply file a nod rather than file a motion to revisit decision based on clear unmistakable error. However, Berta has had good luck "asking VA to cue themselves", but she is the first one to point out that this is NOT a nod, and you should still file a nod within a year unless your asking va to cue themselves is resolved to your satisfaction first. Generally, Cue is a method to obtain an earlier effective date and rarely works for disputes about a disability percentage unless you have all the symptoms of the criteria. This said, an erroneous DC code can be cue, but the burden is on you to show its "outcome determinative". In other words if you have 50 percent for rhinitis, and you think it should be 50 percent for sinisitus, this wont affect your outcome so it isnt cue. Now, if you are seeking both rhinitis and sinitus, did you apply for both? Was one denied? If so, you probably should have appealed that within a year. The symptoms attributable to rhinitis may be similar to those associated with sinitus, or close enough the differences could be debatable. This would be a medical determination, made by your doctor, and you dont cue a docs opinion. If you dispute a docs opinion, then there are ways to do this, such as an IMO/IME, or a challenge to the doctors c and p credentials, if applicable. If there are errors in your medical records, then you can seek to amend those, but that isnt cue. If va decision makers relied upon the opinion of a doctor, even if that doc was wrong, that isnt cue. You have to right that opinion with an IMO/IME. Your lay evidence wont repair a faulty doctors opinion. You have to have another doctor rufute that opinion.
  14. broncovet

    Is this a CUE

    Based upon your post, it sounds like the rating is higher than you expect, so you certainly would not want to yell "cue" for giving you a higher rating than expected. Remember, pyramiding prevents you from being compensated for any symptoms twice, so you cant get it for both rhinitis and sinisitus.
  15. broncovet

    Superimposed ischemia

    If you have been service connected P and T 100 percent for 10 years or more, it wont matter the cause of death...your spouse should get DIC regardless. However, if you die and have NOT been 100 percent P and T for at least 10 years, then the cause of death matters. Your spouse is eligible for DIC if EITHER: a. You die from a service connected cause or b. You die from ANY cause if you have been 100 percent P and T for 10 years. Now, you can get compensation above 100 percent (if you are not already SMC S) if you have 100 percent, plus an additional (combined) 60 percent seperate and distinct from each other. This is called statuatory SMC S.
  16. If you are unable to drive, then I doubt if you are employable. That is, your rating should likely be increased to 100 percent especially if you are "unable to work due to sc disabilitie(s)." If this decision is within a year, appeal. If not, you should apply for an increase, especially if you can not work.
  17. broncovet

    Be advisied

    Its fine if you do this. However, its been my experience that neither congress nor VSO's have any influence on VA at all. If they WERE to yield any influence over VA, I doubt that I would want to waste that influence by trying to force a C and P exam. Remember this: I will also just about guarantee the VA "knows" which examiners are "Veteran friendly" and which are not so much. I had a very favorable VA c and P exam, which was "absolutely critical" to the fact I was awarded 100 percent. A less favorable exam would have resulted in less favorable benefits, or none at all.
  18. broncovet

    Be advisied

    In relevant part: and:
  19. broncovet

    Be advisied

    Its okay if you dont agree. However, this is the VA's policy: https://www.benefits.va.gov/COMPENSATION/docs/claimexam-faq.pdf They do "not" have to perform a C and P exam, there is no regulation which requires it. The VA has discretion on whether or not to order a C and P exam, the VEteran can not force one.
  20. broncovet

    Puzzled and would like others opinions

    It may not be so bad. I have a daughter in law who is an MD in the military. She says she trusts her "PA's" (Physician Assistants). My wife is also a retired nurse, and, beleive me the doctors very often do as the nurse suggests anyway. I personally worked in a nursing home years ago. While the doctors "signed off" on the orders, we went, sometimes weeks and never saw a doctor. And the patient didnt either. Its not unusual in private or VA care for the doc to delagate much stuff to a nurse. The doc's license is "on the line" so he does not do that unless he trusts the nurses competence. Very often, you make a doctors appointment and you dont see the doc..often a nurse, PA, etc. This is true in both VA and private practice. If the nurse is very competent, you dont have much to worry about. They call it "triage", where the nurse assesses the situation to determine if the doctor is needed. Sometimes yes, sometimes no. Its just the way it works. There is a shortage of doctors, and nurses are utilized to fill the void. Frankly, I would rather see a competent PA or nurse, than an incompetent doctor anyday. Just go to work at a hospital (I actually did that many many years ago) and you will see that first hand. The nurse (or PA) is "under the supervision" of a doctor, even if the doc is not in the same room at the time. At the nursing home, often the doctor is 20 miles away, and docs really dont go to nursing homes that often...and the sickest people in the world are there, often.
  21. broncovet

    Be advisied

    You can not "force" a C and P exam UNLESS so ordered by the BVA. The VA has a policy to not use a C and P exam "unless necessary". A C and P exam is likely not necessary if any one or more of the following exist: 1. There is already evidence in the file. Remember "evidence" is evidence, there is nothing special about a C and P exam except that, sometimes the VA will request the doctor supply some specific answers to questions. In the case of an increase, you need documentation that your symptoms have gotten worse. 2. That a C and P exam wont change everything. For example, a C and P exam is unnecessary if you do not have an "in service event"...this would have had to have happened "in service" and a C and P exam wont fix that problem. Its true that a new exam "may" be good for you, if the exam documents worsened symptoms. However, you could do the same by simply making an appointment and telling your VA doc how your symptoms have worsened since 1986.
  22. It looks good! I think Vets deserve to choose where they get their health care, as most civilians get to choose!! Why dont we??
  23. File it yesterday, if you can not do so sooner. Last week is even better. If you file before the end of the month, you can get paid for June, but if you file after June 1, then you wont get paid until July. You get paid the first day to the month FOLLOWING the effective date. Criteria for becoming a VSO: Be clueless. It sounds like your VSO meets the criteria. My old VSO passed it with flying colors!
  24. According to the CCK law firm's website, as of April 1, 2018, any Vet in appeals can now opt in for RAMP. https://cck-law.com/news/rapid-appeals-modernization-program-ramp-open-to-all-veterans-april- Thanks, new hadit member, Jroocan, for this heads up!!!
  25. An example of "limited ADL's " may be if you broke your leg and had a cast. So, lets say you can not get out of bed without help, you cant get clothes over your cast, you can not walk. This would mean you would not be able to go get food, without help, but, if someone handed you a washrag, you could wash yourself, and if someone brought you food your hands worked ok, so you could feed yourself. I know this sounds silly, but go to a nursing home and you will often see residents being fed, who can not feed themselves. Almost all nursing home residents need help with ADL's. Otherwise, they wouldnt need to be in the nursing home.

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