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Lack Of Accountability For Med Docs

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rodin57

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This is my first post. Yea!

First the brief background info- Currently 10% SC for sinus problems, and lots of 0% SC for other problems. Filed a claim for increase with the Phoenix RO in April 2010. Did several CNPs. and was sent by VA to one Independent Medical Exam for hearing probs (Jul 2010). Then I waited. And waited. (Did I say waited?)

Finally found Hadit, and began to get educated! Became a regular Hadit lurker. Someone mentioned MyHealthEvet, so I get an account. Another person mentioned eBenefits, so I get an account. On Sept 1, 2011 I was checking MyHealthEvet and wondering why my claim was taking so long. So looked at my appointment calendar. I noticed that the appointment calendar includes the dates of all VA appointments as well as a section indicating attendance or no-show. I saw that my Indep Med Exam (Jul 2010) showed that I was a no-show. A phone call to the 800# told me that I was a no-show and they have no documentation from that provider.

Long story short, I went to the Indep Med Exam Dr. and obtained a copy of my test results and her evaluation. I drove over to the VA clinic, and attempted to deliver the med docs to them. The desk person would accept the docs, but refused to give me a signed/dated receipt for them. I asked for a copy of their policy for receiving medical documentation. He said they didn't have one. I asked him what happens if the "wind" accidently blows stuff into the garbage can after I leave? He said that I could just bring another copy to them. I told him I would really like a receipt showing they have custody of my med docs.

He decides to "bump-me-up" to his supervisor. I go to her office and re-tell her all of the above. She looks at me and says, "Why do you want a receipt? So you can say 'I got you!' if we lose something"? I told her that I actually hadn't thought it out that far in advance. She then tells me that they receive a lot of documents every day and she wouldn't even know how to manage handling all the document receipts for some sort of medical document chain-of-custody program. I volunteered to write a draft policy for her standardizing their acceptance of medical documentation. She just stared at me for a minute, then thanked me for my service and showed me the door.

Now I am wondering: do other VA clinics/hospitals have a policy for accepting medical documentation? My God, what would you do if you had to turn in one-of-a-kind stuff (like x-ray film, etc) to the VA? You couldn't just give them another copy if they "lost" it.

Sorry for such a long first post. :biggrin:

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  • HadIt.com Elder

You managed to find one of the major VA problems! Lack of accountability!

If no one signs, no one is responsible!

The immediate lesson is never take the only copy of anything important to the VA!

These days, a printer/scanner/fax/copier is fairly inexpensive, usually less than $200 for a decent one!

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You can take a couple approaches to this problem.

1) Start sending everything (except films or disc's) thru the mail Certified w/Return Receipt. That way you have a signed legal document that proves they received it.

2) If you have an SO, take your evidence to him/her to turn in to the RO. That is if you trust them.

If you can't do both, I would follow number 1.

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You managed to find one of the major VA problems! Lack of accountability! If no one signs' date=' no one is responsible![/quote']

It just seems to me that implementing a standardized system allowing the VA to acknowledge receipt of documents is in everyone's best interest (including the VA's). From a VA management standpoint, it would allow a VA investigator to examine document "loss" statistics for a particular VA employee, VA office, VA clinic, or VA hospital. Also, if implementing a standardized system requires more VA employees to "receive" the documents, then it would also create more new jobs. Win-Win for everybody!

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  • HadIt.com Elder

If you want the records to be part of your medical file take them to the patient advocate at the hospital. They will probably need to go through the release of information office. There is a proprer proceedure and it is not to walk in and give them to the clinic. I really doubt the people working at a desk in a clinic are authorized to add documents to you medical records. If you want the documents to be evidence submit them to your servcice officer and have the SO submit them to the RO with a statement in support of the claim explaining where and how you got them. If you do not have an SO take them to the RO and submit them with the statement in support of the claim.

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