If this story makes you mad about the VA . . .

If this story makes you mad about the VA . . . contact your Representatives in Congress and the Senate, or the Veteran's Administration and let them know how you feel about the way the VA treats our vets. You can reference my blog or or the stories of many other vet's and their treatment by the VA available on the web.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

July 18, 2012 Time for an update on everything going on.

Received word from the Portland VA July 13th, that my Appeal of the CUE claim had been certified and forwarded to the VBA (Veteran's Board of Appeals).  Went in and talked to my VSO on the 16th, appealing the denial of my Tinnitus and consequently hearing.  The VA claims that my tinnitus and hearing loss are a pre-existing condition, because the earliest hearing test they can find is dated Aug. 1979.  When I questioned why they couldn't find any for my time of service between '75 - '80, I was told I needed to prove I was in the service then.  Well, my VSO now has copies of my original enlistment contract dated 1975, training certificates dated '75, '76, and '77, DD873 Security Clearance from '78, orders and my discharge order dated '80, as well as my Honorable Discharge certificate dated '80.  Gee, I guess I was in back then . . .  Also submitted packet for Voc. Rehab.  I may be going back to college.

After meeting with my VSO, went to talk to my civilian advocate.  All the paperwork is in and I have my SSDI hearing on July 31st.  Didn't have a choice, was involuntarily laid off the end of May and unemployment doesn't want to pay me, because I stated I am a 70% service connected disabled Veteran and not able to take just any job offered.  I lost all of June's unemployment before I found out what was going on and got the claim going again.  I'm now suppose to hear whether I get unemployment or not, by the 27th of July.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Mar. 30, 2012 A win and still partial victory!

Well, I noticed on Monday that on e-Bennies, my status had gone to Complete.  Waited all week to find out the outcome, but did notice e-Bennies now showed me at 70% disabled.  Got the brown envelope today (Saturday), and it will take some time to work with Stu (VSO) and see where we go from here.  I've seen the retro pay and it only goes back to Dec. 2010, so I will have to fight to take it back further.  Still have to fight for the tinnitus as well.

But . . . the VA has finally admitted that my hips and knees are service related!  Still have a lot of paperwork to do, need to add wife, kids, kids in college info, etc., but, we're getting there!

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Jan. 30, 2012 Partial victory! The waiting continues.

Just before New Year's, my claim is back in "Review of evidence", WTH!

Surprise, in early Jan., I receive a letter from the VA stating that I've received a partial decision.  They have denied my tinnitus (I thought that was a guaranteed, based on my MOS?  I mean, even the DRO Hearing Officer stated that it was a given (I have her on tape stating that).  My kidney's and liver were put on "pending".  BUT, my left shoulder was rated at 10% and service related.  I've been regularly checking e-bennies and my claim still shows as in  "Review of evidence" through tonight.  I did get a letter from the VA apologizing that it was taking so long last week, but all I can do is watch and hope that they finally recognize and admit that my Military service did in fact, aggravate my "pre-existing" condition.

My SO has also informed me that he is formally retiring.  He has taught me plenty and he deserves time to do what he wants and has earned.  He did recommend another SO, who I also know, so now is a wait and see as to what the final decision of the VA is.

(NOTE:  If the decision comes back against my claim, I will have to file a "Letter of Disagreement".  That will already include the disagreement with the denial of the tinnitus.  We'll also need to see, if I win my claim, how far back they will take it.  By the book, my claim should go back to the first time I filed it in '86.  If it doesn't, I will have to submit paperwork requesting a review to take it back to then.  Like I stated earlier, the whole system is heavily weighted in the VA's favor.  They can continue to drag this out for several more years . . . or until I die, which ever comes first.)

Monday, December 19, 2011

Dec. 19, 2012 Movement is seen . . . will the end be near?

Well, I checked e-Bennies the other day and my claim has finally moved to Decision Phase.  That means it should be over and I should have the written decision in my hands within 60-90 days, starting Dec. 9th.  Will have to wait and see if it's a partial victory or a full victory.

In the mean time, blood test results show my thyroid is under control.  Liver on the other hand, is still pissed off and raising concern with my PCP.  More blood tests have been done and nothing conclusive.  Doc wants to schedule me to see a liver specialist.  Waiting for an appointment on that.

Dermatologist burned/froze several "pre-cancerous" spots on my forehead and the tops of both ears, as well as more spots on one ear.  Lucky me, frostbite already this year.  She also cut a chunk out of my back about the size of the old silver dollars. (~ 2" across).  Biopsy showed basal cell.  Still healing, but looking good.

More news as I hear it.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Nov. 6, 2011 -- The waiting game continues . . .

Well, the Comp/Pen was in early May, and still no word.  Checking e-benefits shows my case is still "in development".  Just when will it end?

Other developments -- I've been on Syn-Throid for just about 3 months now for my thyroid.  My new PCP picked up on my thyroid when trying to find the cause of my high liver enzymes, renal dysfunction, and un-explained weight gain.  So far, I'm starting to lose weight and feel better.  I go in for more blood work ~ 18th and to have a spot on my back and cheek checked out by dermatology.   We can pinpoint when my thyroid started failing pretty close.  Looks like I need to add it to my claim as well.

Friday, July 22, 2011

July 22,2011 -- Next replacement begins . . .

Was hoping to have heard something by now, but, nothing!  SAD!!

The right knee is not recovering and I'm back in pain.  Knowing how the VA likes to delay as long as possible, I've requested an appointment to start the process of knee replacement.  I can get by without the heavy pain killers as of yet, and while I've thought about going back to using a cane . . . not bad enough yet.  It is starting to scare me when I have to walk down steps though.  It feels like the knee is going to give out and I'll fall (I really don't need that to happen).  The appointment will be on Aug. 8, 2011.  Based on previous experience with the VA, it could take up to 3 years on the waiting list, so I might as well get it started.

On the bright side, I also have my 1 year checkup on the right hip the same day.  That's still doing extremely well.  Will post the results of both appointments when they're done.

Friday, July 1, 2011

July 1, 2011 Update

Nothing new to report!  It's been almost 2 months since the comp/pen and not a word from the VA.  Looks like they're dragging their feet or playing the "Delay, Deny, Delay and hope the Vet Dies" game again!