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Exposedvet Podcast March 31, 2022 at 7:00pm et. Guest Speaker Bethanie Spangenberg (Valor4Vet)


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Bethanie Spangenberg and her Valor4Vet group offer comprehensive Independent medical opinions / exams. Bethanie is a PA and a former VA c and P examiner. When she left the VA she started Valor4vet and is a non practicing Accredited VA Appeals agent. Her team consists of a host of MD's, NP's and PA's who provide affordable exams from DBQ's to full medical opinions.

https://www.blogtalkradio.com/jbasser/2022/03/31/exposedvet-podcast-with-guest-bethanie-spangenberg-valor4vet

The website is https\\valor4vet.com

To call into the show, dial 515 605 9764.

 

Edited by jbasser
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About Valor 4 Vet from their sited:

Valor 4 Vet

Valor 4 Vet is a team of Medical Experts trained in veteran disability law.  We serve as consultants to assist the veteran in building evidence for their disability claim.  

Valor 4 Vet does not represent veterans for legal claims, does not provide legal advice, and does not provide medical advice.

We understand that disability and injury are major reasons to feel detachment and loneliness from the rest of the world. This is especially prevalent in our Veterans. After being trained for war to protect our country and the principles we abide, our veterans are left misguided and unable to cope with the rest of society.

Inspired by one Veteran Service Officer, her husband, a Marine Corps Veteran, and years of experience in Chillicothe Veteran Affairs Medical Center moved our founder Bethanie Spangenberg to establish Valor 4 Vet in 2015.

Our mission at Valor 4 Vet is to help the disabled veteran claim the benefits they are legally entitled to through educating our Medical Experts on VA Disability Law and drafting reports for the disabled veteran.

Our Medical Experts advocate for the veteran through our medical expertise and education, years of service at the Department of Veterans Affairs, serving on FPOW Committees, and Supporting County Veteran Service Officers, Attorneys, and Accredited VA Agents.

We provide our experience to the veteran’s advantage.

Our Medical Experts experience includes training and working inside the Department of Veterans Affairs. They have conducted medical examinations of Veterans and Active Duty Service Members, formulating medical opinions for disability, special monthly compensation, aid and attendance, unemployability, Dependency Indemnity Compensation (DIC), FPOW exams, and VA Medical Malpractice . They have worked with the staff at the Veterans Benefit Administration processing Veteran’s disability claims. This means the Medical Experts have seen how Veterans have succeeded and where they failed in their disability claims.

We feel at Valor 4 Vet that the quality of service we provide and the involvement in VA disability law can be topped by no other competitor. Our practices follow The US Code of Federal Regulations.

 —Our Medical Experts consist of an Audiologist, Podiatrist, Psychologist, Physician, Nurse Practitioners, and Physician Assistant. No other competitor offers that.

 —Every Record Review that goes out has 2 sets of Medical Expert’s eyes on the review to confirm that a “no nexus” means “no nexus.” No other competitor can offer that.

 —Every Nexus Letter that leaves Valor 4 Vet has 2 or 3 sets of Medical Expert’s eyes on the report. No other competitor can offer that.
 
—Every Nexus Letter that is written by Valor 4 Vet will stay with the veteran for the life of the claim. No other competitor can offer that.
 
—Valor 4 Vet is involved with veteran advocacy groups across the country and offers Supreme Court approved Continuing Legal Education training to Veteran Service Officers, Attorneys, and Accredited VA Agents. No other competitor can offer that.
 

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Numerous Veterans have asked me, "Where do I go to get an IMO for ,,,,,, condition?"

While many of us are aware of doctors who provide IMO's (independent medical opinion) without seeing the patient, their website indicates that Veterans can get an in person exam, (IME), through their firm with traveling doctors.  

Remember, with an IMO, the doctor interpreting your records cant perform new tests, such as documenting your conditions via xrays or other tests.  Thus, the IME is often much more powerful winning claims than "just" an IMO.  An IME is pretty much an IMO with an in person exam.  An IME would go a long ways refuting an unfavorable medical exam.  

    The law indicates that, if 2 doctors differ in their opinion, "the Board" (BVA) can favor one opinion over another doctors opinion, but must give a valid reasons and bases as to why they did so.  

    Examples of reasons why the board favored one doc's opinion over another include things like "this exam was more thorough", such as medical tests were performed.  

    This is an advantage for Veterans, because many times the c and p exam can last but 30 minutes or so.  Now, this does not mean, because another doctor spent 35 minutes with you, his exam was more thorough.  But, the doctor can MAKE the exam more thorough by doing things like ordering tests that previous doctors did not, or by asking you questions about your health history that were not previously asked.  

    A biggie is "when did you first notice your symptoms"?  This is huge, and can establish an earlier effective date, "especially if" your VA c and p examiner "did not" specify "When your condition began", but, instead, the VA uses your c and p exam date.  

     Remember, your effective date is the later of "the date you file" or "facts found" (this means when did the doc say your symptoms began).  

      VA c and p examiners often "do not" give a "date your symptoms began".  This often hurts your effective date!  If you applied in 2008, but your examiner in 2022 "did not give" a date your symptoms began, then the VA would likely give you a 2022 effective date, with little or no retro, even tho you have been suffering with your problem since 2008 or earlier, in this example.  

      As always, you never want to lie to your doctor or the VA to obtain benefits, that is called fraud and can result in losing your benefits and possibly being prosecuted.  Dont go there, instead sleep well at night knowing you told the truth, and you can remember that if another doc asks you a similar question.  

     As an example, if you were invited to a July 4 celebration, but then have to decline because your "knee flared up" and you could not walk, then tell your doctor that, if it applies.  

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Ok so they charge to get a nexus this is what the VA claim process has turn into. Smh.

And they are advertising it as if it ok.

An ppl are fighting for these places something is really off to me.

 

An ppl think the VA isn't going to stop accepting all private records in a min.

With this the system is turning into a pay to play system

This is really going to hurt the process I hope I get my smc stuff  done really soon because things are about to get crazy  with the veterans affairs.

But this my opinion and I am about to fall back from all this I don't like it and I feel the VA is going to come down on this practice.

And it going to hurt veterans in the long run.

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Very often the VARO and sometimes even the BVA will ignore all your direct favorable positive medical and non medical evidence in your file and that which you sent them in denying your claim and in a very recent case a doctor's private nexus opinion statement won my OSA Sleep Apnea with CPAP appeal  with SMC-S and 5 years back pay for a cost to me of only $1500.00 for TWO separate opinions on TWO separate appeals.

Except this one time all my other successful claims and appeals over 30 years has been based upon my medical treatment records and other evidence submitted by me with the claim.

As the doctor's opinion stated in this quote a physical exam is not always necessary, required or even possible to render a nexus medical opinion.

Note the Bold type.

"A smaller group of claims request designation of service connection for non-service-connected conditions which were aggravated by a service-connected condition. The best examples are sleep apnea aggravated by service-connected PTSD, or coronary artery disease caused by Agent Orange. In these cases, individualized evaluation and physical examination are not helpful in determining how Agent Orange was a substantial factor in developing coronary artery disease years after the Vietnam War. Rather, the veteran is a member of a class of individuals who was exposed to Agent Orange and in-whom by excellent scientific studies scientists found that the incidence of coronary artery disease is far higher in that class of veterans serving in Vietnam as compared to veterans who do not serve in Vietnam. Such is the case here – the veteran is a member of a class of individuals.   Physical examination does not contribute to answering the question of whether or not PTSD and IHD can cause and/or aggravate sleep apnea; these are scientific questions"

He furthermore stated he reviewed my C-file and copies of VA, Army and private doctors medical records as required by the BVA.

Although it may be unfair to us vets REALITY says that sometimes some vets like me must use paid private lawyers and doctors to win our deserved benefits just like with SSA benefits and private medical insurance benefits that sometimes require the use of paid professionals by the claimants.  This is the American way for many many decades now and the system will not change IMHO.  Complaining for me is not helpful in any sense of the word.

This comment is not legal advice as I am not a lawyer, paralegal or VSO representative.

 

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On 3/28/2022 at 8:15 AM, Mr cue said:

Ok so they charge to get a nexus this is what the VA claim process has turn into. Smh.

And they are advertising it as if it ok.

An ppl are fighting for these places something is really off to me.

 

An ppl think the VA isn't going to stop accepting all private records in a min.

With this the system is turning into a pay to play system

This is really going to hurt the process I hope I get my smc stuff  done really soon because things are about to get crazy  with the veterans affairs.

But this my opinion and I am about to fall back from all this I don't like it and I feel the VA is going to come down on this practice.

And it going to hurt veterans in the long run.

I guess that is your opinion and I respect that. Having Bethanie's group on the show is a benefit. We do not advertise for anyone, We just let the Veterans know there is help available. Some folks have succeeded in the process by going it alone. Some folks had to get an IMO/IME.  It all comes down to evidence and how it is utilized. Evidence wins claims. Hope you get your SMC.  

Basser

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