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I had a C&P exam this morning for an increase to my bipolar rating. I wanted to share my experience. It was a telehealth appointment.

My first appointment was canceled, which was very fortunate because I was not prepared. I spent the time before the new appointment researching what to expect and the best way to approach the exam. I decided to make a page with a detailed list of my symptoms and a separate page with issues that I wanted to discuss.

When the exam started I told the doctor that I was worried about forgetting something and that I had made notes as a reminder. She said that was a great idea and let me refer to my notes after every question. When she was done she asked if there was anything in my notes that we hadn’t gone over. Then we talked about that stuff.

After the exam she told me that she was updating my diagnosis to Bipolar 1 with psychosis and mixed episodes. She then  told me that she didn’t think I was getting the help that I need and asked if she could give me medical advice and information outside of the exam, which I gratefully accepted.

Now it’s a waiting game for the rest of the claim process.

For anyone with a Bipolar of Mental Health C&P coming my recommendation would be to write down in detail what symptoms you are having and how they affect different areas of your life. The exam can be tough and you shouldn’t trust yourself to remember everything on the spot.

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On 5/26/2022 at 9:47 AM, asdf said:

Whodat: I can see my exams through a VSO with VBMS access

This is only true after 30 days have elasped, and only after you have requested a copy of the exam in writing.

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I can not speak to the honesty or dishonest of c/p exams conducted by contractors. I can say that I had one claim approved after a c/p exam conducted by a contractor,  the original examiner was a N/P who worked for the VA and she was totally dishonest in fact I proved she outright lied, and should never do C/P claims again.  Other experiences with contracted examiners concerned the damage done to my eye in 2008, and a recent surgery ( Nov 2018) where I continue to request a K award for loss of use of the eye.  Having requested copies of these exams ( there were 3 ) since Nov 2018 and to day I have not been able to get a copy. During one exam the examiner actuially did say I was not blind, but she did not address loss of use, in fact she told me she could not tell me  anything, and I told her, she can't tell me her opinion concerning the exam, but that she owed me an opinion concerning the eye itself. That was a waste of my time.  I continue to appeal based on the reading of title 38 and the reasons for giving a K award for eyes,  which states " loss of use or Blindness",  the va continues to state, ( just got another denial today) that loss of use is blindness, but I am convienced that if the VA wanted to say to get a K award title 38 ould say "loss of use is blindness" . There is a reason they said " Or" , in title 38,  which generally means there are two or more  choices or reasons for the K award in this case. I argued with one eye examiner in early 2021, when he said I could not get a 60% rating, and I did.  Frankly, I do not trust any examiner, I have had many tell me I should get an increase and then the denial comes.  You have to be proactive in all exams, you have to present your worse case and not the good day. Don't jump up on exam tables, if you have a bad back or knees. Don't forget to wear a brace prescribed by your doctors, don't tell them your not taking your medications, and don't give information unless it is asked for or unless you think the examiner missed something. Above all, do not argue with the examiner, ( unless they lie to your or call you a liar). If the examiner does not do the job correctly, you can ( if you ever get a copy of the exam) destroy the examiners opinion, and if they left something out, you can also dispute the facts with proof. ( such as a recently exam for my left knee, the examiner failed to mention I was wearing a AFO, in fact, she said I had no loss of use, ( well if your wearing an AFO its very likely you have loss of use, not always but likely due to foot drop.)  Do not cancel or miss an examination, the va can and will rate you without the benefit of an exam. Try to get a nexus before the c/p exam and that way your not stuck with a government paid for opinion which can be negative.  Also any examining official can be good or bad, it has nothing to do with contractors, or va employees. The problem of not getting a copy of the c/p exam is real when it comes to contractor exams.  Also, you have to keep the claim alive any way you can until you see the c/p exam report, this is to protect the effective date of the claim.

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Ok ssi and workman comp doctor are look to get you back to work or day u can work so that you don't get ssi.

The VA system and disability is to be veteran friendly that the law.

If you are been send to workman's comp ssi place.

Are the doctors veteran friendly I think not.

What was the reason for the VA contracting out comp exams.

It was because some veterans didn't live never a VA hospital.

They to not get rid of the comp and pension department at the VA hospital.

An as the rater that post here has stated.

They are to send the veteran to the VA hospital and if one isn't near. They contract it out.

Well seem to me the VA has and are acting like there is no more VA hospital comp exam any more.

Last I never say miss a exam but I do say if they try to make you travel 2 hours away and there is a VA hospital closer. There is a problem.




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Posted (edited)

My son is Psychotic according to the VA. But not service connected for it, he has service connection for other issues. I accompany my son to a VA claims office because he is psychotic. I know my son so when the VA asked him questions and I saw my son’s eyes, and how he frozen, etc… I would answer for him. Well the VA asked me to stop answering and let him talk. But in a very unprofessional manner, not knowing my son has mental health issues. So I got him a lawyer and he was awarded 70 percent for other things, but not for mental health. So the lawyer convinced my son to go for 100 percent. He went for a C&P exam and got reduced to 50 percent (a big cut). He got dropped because of how he answered the questions. Without the C&P knowing he is Psychotic. I was not there, nor the lawyer to help. Currently the lawyer has it and it is waiting on a judge (15 months). Conclusion, parents dealing with adult veterans that have mental issues, accompany your child to all exams, and try to brief the examiner. Examiners are humans and might feel offended my remarks or actions there by clouding their judgement. 

Edited by Alex4
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