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Found 1,911 results

  1. Tuesday, November 1, 2005 Military Update: Veterans’ disability panel to avoid debating genetics By Tom Philpott, Special to Stars and Stripes Pacific edition, Thursday, October 27, 2005 The Veterans’ Disability Benefits Commission unanimously has voted that a veteran’s genetic makeup, which might show predisposition to certain illnesses before entering service, is not a reasonable topic for the commission to study in its review of “service connection” and disability payments. During an Oct. 14 public hearing in Washington, the commission also rejected, on a 10-1 vote, a proposal to study whether veterans’ disability benefits should be reduced at some “normal” retirement age to reflect the typical income drop of most American workers as they retire. The two votes came as commissioners shaped research questions they want answered by staff or through contracted studies to be conducted by the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies of Science and by the Center for Naval Analyses over the next year or more. “If you cannot determine at time of entry into service what the genetic makeup of the potential serviceman is, how can you, when the serviceman leaves in two years, three years or 20 years, base disability benefits on the genetic issue?” asked retired Army Lt. Gen. James T. Scott, commission chairman, in summing up the panel’s decision not to delve into genetics. Some critics contend that the veterans’ disability compensation system is overly generous because it assumes that any disease or ailment that surfaces while a service member is on active duty is “service-connected” and, therefore, compensable, even if family history is suspected to be a factor. “We’re not going there,” said Commissioner Rick Surratt, a Vietnam combat veteran and deputy legislative director for Disabled American Veterans, after the vote, which he agreed was significant for veterans. The IOM says it needs 15 months to apply its medical expertise, which the commissioners concede they lack, to review and analyze the Schedule for Rating Disabilities used by the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Defense for setting disability compensation levels. The IOM will judge how well the rating schedule reflects current medical understanding of the link between impairment and disability; advances in technology and treatments for disabilities; gains in function realized through vocational rehabilitation, environmental adaptations or other special-purpose benefits. The IOM also will review possible weaknesses in the rating schedule that require “additional disability designations such as Individual Unemployability” in order to compensate veterans adequately. Congress chartered the 13-member commission to conduct a comprehensive review of federal disability benefits for veterans and their survivors. Lawmakers set a tentative deadline for the commission to deliver a final report to the president and Congress within 17 months of its first meeting, which was held May 16 this year. But Ray Wilburn, the commission’s executive director, said that a final report might be delayed at least a year, until fall 2007, to allow the IOM and CNA time to complete their studies, integrate their work and inform commissioners. The CNA will study the appropriateness of current compensation levels for veterans, tapping various data sources and fresh surveys. It also will analyze the effectiveness of the rating schedule in meeting the original intent of Congress that compensation be sufficient to replace “average impairment in earning capacity resulting from such injuries in civil occupations.” Given the law’s emphasis on earning capacity, Commissioner John H. Grady, an actuary with Mellon Financial Corp. in Dallas, included among research questions for the CNA this: Would disability benefits be more appropriate if the level of payment was higher before some normal ‘retirement age’ and lower thereafter? On a motion from Surratt that the research question be dropped, Grady defended it, saying the commission needs at least to consider whether disability benefits should follow earnings and income patterns of civilian occupations, which routinely fall as they retire. Surratt argued that disabled veterans don’t have normal working careers. Some cannot build a nest egg for their retirement years like able-bodied counterparts. Also, he said, a veteran who becomes a double amputee from fighting in Iraq won’t grow his limbs back in retirement. The disability is permanent and continues to affect quality of life. Surratt’s motion to strike such research was approved, with only Grady dissenting among 11 commissioners present. Another commissioner, Marine Corps Major Gen. James E. Livingston, a Medal of Honor recipient, challenged draft guidance that CNA study the issue of “disabilities that occur as part of genetics” in reviewing standards for defining ailments as service connected. Livingston said recruits who clear entrance physicals are presumed to be fit for duty, and that presumption shouldn’t be altered even if advances in genetics now can show that veterans were predisposed to certain illnesses. The entire panel, on a voice vote, agreed to strike the genetics question. Chairman Scott, in an interview afterward, said the commission isn’t abandoning its responsibility to weigh other issues regarding the definition of “service-connected” disabilities. He pointed to research still planned into whether age should be a factor in determining entitlement to service-connected compensation, whether the “benefit-of-the-doubt rule,” which guides raters to favor the veteran in deciding close calls on service connection, should be changed, and whether service connection on a “secondary” or an “aggravation” basis should be redefined. But Scott also said he also agreed with a concern expressed by Commissioner Joe Wynn that final recommendations reflect the opinions of commissioners and not be driven by “subject matter experts” at IOM or CNA. To comment, write Military Update, P.O. Box 231111, Centreville, VA 20120-1111, e-mail milupdate@aol.com or visit www.militaryupdate.com. © 2003 Stars and Stripes. All Rights Reserved.
  2. Hi all Rickb 26 here.... Just keeping you updated. Won my reopened claim on hearing loss 0% and tinnitus 10% after a long time. While this doesn't change my monthly payment (90% TDIU May 1999) it was the principle of the matter that kept me going.. Once again this proves just becaue your already TDIU or 100% doesn't mean you have to go away if you have a valid claim.... I filed these claims in May 2005. So this was a real quick decision by VA standards. This was approved with out a C/P exam, they just excepted the records from VA med center in temple texas. Thanks Waco Regionl Office. Still pending a decison on COPD secondary to Asthma, claim submitted in May 2005, had C/P exam in Sept 2005 so expect an answer any time now. C/P doctor was a recently retired Army Major, told me based on my active medical records and my present condition that he was going to write this up indicating a serious disability... so I expect to win this claim as well. Not posting often because don't care for format on here but I do check in to read alot.
  3. undefined I received a letter Friday from The Department of Defense. The letter stated that I was receiving a good conduct medal a meritoutous unit citation, and the Vietnam Campaign medal W/2 bronze service stars. This is hard to beleive after 38 years. The DOD updated my DD 214 to reflect the changes, unbelievable. Jim Lane TDIU T&P
  4. U.S. Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs Site Map | Text-Only Email Address: Email Version: HTML Text 412 Russell Senate Office Building Washington D.C. 20510 Republican Staff (202) 224-9126 Democratic Staff (202) 224-2074 Home » Newsroom and Photos » Press Releases EXPLOSIVE GROWTH OF DISABLED VETERANS DEEMED UNEMPLOYABLE, TO BE EXAMINED THURSDAY Whether you're an employer or a veteran seeking employment, check out HireVetsFirst.gov October 25, 2005 Contact: Jeff Schrade (202)224-9093 (Washington, DC) On Thursday, October 27, the U.S. Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs will hold an oversight hearing titled: "The Rising Number of Disabled Veterans Deemed Unemployable: Is the System Failing? A closer look at VA’s individual unemployability benefit." The hearing will begin at 2 p.m. in room 418 of the Russell Senate Office Building. It will be webcast live and archived on the committee’s website (see Current Hearings), and may also be audiocast – during the hearing only – on C-SPAN’s hearings website, located at http://www.capitolhearings.org. Earlier this year the Veterans’ Disability Benefits Commission held its own review of the IU system and members were told that approximately 200,000 veterans with disability ratings of 60 percent to 90 percent are now deemed unemployable, but paid as if they are 100 percent disabled. Between 1999 through 2004, the number of individual unemployability (IU) grants more than doubled. "With today’s modern technologies, individuals with disabilities have more opportunities than ever to become productive members of society, and I want to hear what VA is doing to make sure these opportunities are made available to our disabled veterans. When our veterans joined the armed services, they wanted to be ‘all they could be’ and as they return from service to their country with injuries, we need to make sure they have the opportunity to be ‘all they can be’ by empowering them with employment and the ability for financial growth," said Chairman Larry Craig. PANEL I The Honorable Daniel L. Cooper, Under Secretary for Benefits, Department of Veterans Affairs - accompanied by – Renee Szybala, Director, VA Compensation and Pension Service – Judith Caden, Director, VA Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Services Director PANEL II Cynthia Bascetta, Director, Education, Workforce and Income Security, Government Accountability Office Rick Surratt, Deputy National Legislative Director, Disabled American Veterans ##### <<September 2005 October 2005 25th - EXPLOSIVE GROWTH OF DISABLED VETERANS DEEMED UNEMPLOYABLE, TO BE EXAMINED THURSDAY 20th - VA OFFICIALS PLEDGE "INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY" REORGANIZATION TO THE SENATE COMMITTEE ON VETERANS' AFFAIRS 19th - 16 YEAR OLD LIVING IN GERMANY GETS U.S. SENATE PAGE POSITION THROUGH CHAIRMAN LARRY CRAIG 18th - VA’S INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY TO BE HEARING FOCUS THURSDAY 12th - NEW MOBILE MRI MACHINE WILL AID VETERANS AND SERVICE PERSONNEL IN SOUTHWEST IDAHO 5th - SENATE VOTES TO AWARD CONGRESSIONAL GOLD MEDAL TO THE TUSKEGEE AIRMEN 3rd - SEN. CRAIG’S BILL SEEKS TO PRESERVE DIGNITY OF ARLINGTON AND OTHER NATIONAL CEMETERIES 3rd - U.S. SENATE HONORS VA EMPLOYEES FOR HURRICANE EFFORTS About the CommitteeLegislationNewsroom and PhotosHearingsIssuesPublicationsLinksContact the Veterans' Affairs Committee Home Text-Only Version Site Map Privacy Policy
  5. A friend just told me that he recently submitted a new claim while he had a claim at the BVA. I told him I thought that it might hang up his BVA claim. He is already at 70% going for his TDIU. Any thoughts?
  6. http://www.va.gov/vetapp05/files2/0510171.txt I will out the whole case into my blog so we can find it again of needed. :(
  7. I got a form letter from the R.O. today wanting to know if I was employed. I am 70%tdiu P&T .Anyone else get this kind of letter?
  8. Ratings and Evaluations; Service Connection 3.303 Principles relating to service connection 3.303-1 3.304 Direct service connection; wartime and peacetime 3.304-1 3.305 Direct service connection; peacetime service before January 1,1947 3.305-1 3.306 Aggravation of pre-service disability 3.306-1 3.307 Presumptive service connection for chronic, tropical, or prisoner-of- war-related disease, or disease associated with exposure to certain herbicide agents; wartime and service on or after January 1,1947 3.307-1 3.308 Presumptive service connection; peacetime service before January 1 1947 3.308-1 3.309 Disease subject to presumptive service connection 3.309-1 3.310 Proximate results, secondary conditions 3.310-1 3.311 Claims based on exposure to ionizing radiation 3.311-1 3.312 Cause of death 3.312-1 3.313 Claims based on service in Vietnam 3.313-1 3.314 Basic pension determinations 3.314-1 3.315 Basic eligibility determinations; dependents, loans, education 3.315-1 3.316 Claims based on chronic effects of exposure to mustard gas 3.316-1 3.317 Compensation for certain disabilities due to undiagnosed illnesses 3.317-1 3.318–3.320 [Reserved] 3.321 General rating considerations 3.321-1 3.322 Rating of disabilities aggravated by service 3.322-1 3.323 Combined ratings 3.323-1 3.324 Multiple noncompensable service-connected disabilities 3.324-1 3.325 [Reserved] 3.326 Examinations 3.326-1 3 327 Reexaminations 3.327-1 3 328 Independent medical opinions 3.328-1 3.329 [Removed] 3.330 Resumption of rating when veteran subsequently reports for Department of Veterans Affairs examination 3.330-1 3.331–3.339 [Reserved] 3.340 Total and permanent total ratings and unemployability 3.340-1 3.341 Total disability ratings for compensation purposes 3.341-1 3.342 Permanent and total disability ratings for pension purposes 3.342-1 3.343 Continuance of total disability ratings 3.343-1 3.344 Stabilization of disability evaluations 3.344-1 §3.303 Principles relating to service connection. (a) General. Service connection connotes many factors but basically it means that the facts, shown by evidence, establish that a particular injury or disease resulting in disability was incurred coincident with service in the Armed Forces, or if preexisting such service, was aggravated therein. This may be accomplished by affirmatively showing inception or aggravation during service or through the application of statutory presumptions. Each disabling condition shown by a veteran’s service records, or for which he seeks a service connection must be considered on the basis of the places, types and circumstances of his service as shown by service records, the official history of each organization in which he served, his medical records and all pertinent medical and lay evidence. Determinations as to service connection will be based on review of the entire evidence of record, with due consideration to the policy of the Department of Veterans Affairs to administer the law under a broad and liberal interpretation consistent with the facts in each individual case. (:( Chronicity and continuity. With chronic disease shown as such in service (or within the presumptive period under §3.307) so as to permit a finding of service connection, subsequent manifestations of the same chronic disease at any later date, however remote, are service connected, unless clearly attributable to intercurrent causes. This rule does not mean that any manifestation of joint pain, any abnormality of heart action or heart sounds, any urinary findings of casts, or any cough, in service will permit service connection of arthritis, disease of the heart, nephritis, or pulmonary disease, first shown as a clearcut clinical entity, at some later date. For the showing of chronic disease in service there is required a combination of manifestations sufficient to identify the disease entity, and sufficient observation to establish chronicity at the time, as distinguished from merely isolated findings or a diagnosis including the word “Chronic.” When the disease identity is established (leprosy, tuberculosis, multiple sclerosis, etc.), there is no requirement of evidentiary showing of continuity. Continuity of symptomatology is required only where the condition noted during service (or in the presumptive period) is not, in fact, shown to be chronic or where the diagnosis of chronicity may be legitimately questioned. When the fact of chronicity in service is not adequately supported, then a showing of continuity after discharge is required to support the claim. © Preservice disabilities noted in service. There are medical principles so universally recognized as to constitute fact (clear and unmistakable proof ), and when in accordance with these principles existence of a disability prior to service is established, no additional or confirmatory evidence is necessary. Consequently with notation or discovery during service of such residual conditions (scars; fibrosis of the lungs; atrophies following disease of the central or peripheral nervous system; healed fractures; absent, displaced or resected parts of organs; supernumerary parts; congenital malformations or hemorrhoidal tags or tabs, etc.) with no evidence of the pertinent antecedent active disease or injury during service the conclusion must be that they preexisted service. Similarly, manifestation of lesions or symptoms of chronic disease from date of enlistment, or so close thereto that the disease could not have originated in so short a period will establish preservice existence thereof. Conditions of an infectious nature are to be considered with regard to the circumstances of the infection and if manifested in less than the respective incubation periods after reporting for duty, they will be held to have preexisted service. In the field of mental disorders, personality disorders which are characterized by developmental defects or pathological trends in the personality structure manifested by a lifelong pattern of action or behavior, chronic psychoneurosis of long duration or other psychiatric symptomatology shown to have existed prior to service with the same manifestations during service, which were the basis of the service diagnosis will be accepted as showing preservice origin. Congenital or developmental defects, refractive error of the eye, personality disorders and mental deficiency as such are not diseases or injuries within the meaning of applicable legislation. (d) Postservice initial diagnosis of disease. Service connection may be granted for any disease diagnosed after discharge, when all the evidence, including that pertinent to service, establishes that the disease was incurred in service. Presumptive periods are not intended to limit service connection to diseases so diagnosed when the evidence warrants direct service connection. The presumptive provisions of the statute and Department of Veterans Affairs regulations implementing them are intended as liberalizations applicable when the evidence would not warrant service connection without their aid. [26 FR 1579, Feb. 24, 1961]
  9. Ok here we go, husband is 100% TDIU & P&T. Went for a hearing test in 2003 and was rated by the Cleveland Regional Office, SC at 0%. Went for a hearing test today and was told that he had a paper that said he was denied for SC and showed him where he was not rated at all for his hearing. He also had Jim's services records from when he was discharged where it stated that he had significant hearing loss. His hearing tested fine before entering the service. Jim has never seen these records. Now where do you think we should go with this? The guy that gave the hearing test seems to think that Jim should have been SC all of these years for his hearing. Thank you Aimee
  10. I’m 60% SC for ruptured sphincter muscle and 50% SC for mood disorder with a combined of 90%, I’m currently working but, having a difficult time, I want to put in for IU but I’m afraid to quit my job, I need my income with a family of 8, any suggestions? I’m willing to listen. Thanks, Allison
  11. When the spouse of a veteran (lets say- the vet is 100% TDIU from the Gulf War and she also receives SSA) and lets say the husband of this vet is rated as NSC but with total and permanent disability- as I understand it this spouse of a vet - let's say the husband in this case-would be eligible for A & A or Housebound..... both, in essense, are SMC awards---- then the spousal AA and or HB vet is NOT a service connected vet, they are simply a vet's dependent receiving VA comp---- did I get that right? Is the spousal A& A or HB amount simply added to the SC vets dependency award? Or -if not incompetent-does the NSC A & A spouse get the VA comp check? Thank you all!
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