Burial Payments

A watchdog investigation found that improper funding of VA burial payments will cost taxpayers $28 million over the next five years.

The investigation started by VA Office of Inspector General (IG) in 2014. It found 4,525 payments of 16,406 automated burial payments from August 2014 to January 2015 were improper.

That investigation revealed VA failed to implement adequate payment controls to ensure funds were allocated properly to bury dead veterans. Annually, improper death benefits including payment so living veterans not yet dead amount to $5.6 million.

The report also found the Veterans Benefits Administration cut off disability compensation benefits to at least 68 veterans who are still alive and who deserve the benefits cut off.

VA Burial Payments Investigation

The VA OIG executive summary states:

“In October 2014, OIG received an allegation that VBA’s automated burial benefits system was authorizing improper burial payments. We evaluated the effectiveness of VBA controls ensuring proper automated burial payments. VBA controls ensured that the majority of automated burial payments were made to living spouses for deceased veterans in accordance with the CFR. However, controls did not consistently ensure proper automated burial payments. We found VBA improperly authorized 4,525 of 16,406 automated burial payments (about $2.8 million) from August 2014 through January 2015, including payments to spouses who weren’t on veterans’ records at the date of death or who were deceased, multiple payments, and payments to veterans who were still living. This occurred because VBA lacked controls, policies, procedures, and sufficient quality assurance reviews. If VBA does not implement adequate controls, we estimated VBA will continue authorizing improper automated burial payments of about $5.6 million annually and approximately $28 million over the next five years. VBA improperly discontinued 68 living veterans’ monthly disability benefit payments totaling $190,267 because VBA had erroneously recorded the veterans as deceased, possibly causing financial hardship to veterans and their families. We recommended the Principal Deputy Under Secretary for Benefits, Performing the Duties of Under Secretary for Benefits, review the improper payments identified during our audit, take appropriate corrective actions when warranted and strengthen burial payment controls. We also recommended he initiate actions to ensure policies and procedures are consistent with CFR and perform quality assurance reviews. The Principal Deputy Under Secretary for Benefits concurred with four of five recommendations and provided acceptable corrective actions plans, but didn’t agree to enforce the requirement that proof of death be submitted prior to the release of automated burial payments. He also provided additional comments, which we addressed in this report.”

Why The Deception?

It is interesting how improper payments exist in the most sensitive areas of VA benefit payments like death benefits, disability compensation and healthcare misallocations.

The areas with the biggest problems are also the most impervious to massive reform measures in part because they affect Americans at their most desperate points in life. It would be near impossible to garner support from voters to cut back on these benefit areas.

Could it be that these obvious and repetitive problems still exist only by design because no sane-minded lawmaker would dare reform those areas because one misstep would spell political suicide?

I refuse to believe we, as an industrialized nation with an abundance of smart leaders, cannot figure out how to establish a Department of Veterans Affairs that follows the written intent of the American People as enacted by Congress while cutting out fraudulent actors.

Instead, do we, the American taxpayer, lack the will to make it happen? I will never believe a system can be so corrupt that reformers cannot repair the damage caused by bad actors.

Source: https://www.va.gov/oig/publications/report-summary.asp?id=3831

Dennis
“We also recommended he initiate actions to ensure policies and procedures are consistent with CFR…” Well golly, I think that ensuring that heir actions are consistant with the Code Of Federal Regulations (also known as The Law) would be a Jim Dandy good idea to try. Just think, if a policy like obeying the law were to be implemented the cultural change at VA could potentially reap the enormous cultural benefits associated with accountability! As a pilot project, implementing policies… Read more »
91Veteran

Shocking how easy reform can be, right?

Lem

Failure to monitor privatization. Open door to fraud. Bet the veterans who were alive never received a check for burial. Someone else got it as well as their compensation when it was cut off. Embezzlement fraud hides in mistakes.

namnibor

Right-on, Lem. I was also thinking what a perfect smokescreen for embezzlement of benefits when fraudulent fiduciaries is not enough to f^ck with Veterans and their families while alive.

namnibor
As terrible as this is, and I hate to be a cynic here but, I am reading this as the VA prepping for their first money grab under President Trump. “[The Principal Deputy Under Secretary for Benefits concurred with four of five recommendations and provided acceptable corrective actions plans, but didn’t agree to enforce the requirement that proof of death be submitted prior to the release of automated burial payments.]” — WHY doesn’t the freakin’ VA just TALK TO Social… Read more »
namnibor

*what*…dyslexia without enough coffee.

Dennis

Do dyslexic cows say “oom”?

namnibor

Only meditating cows say “oom”! 🙂

cj

So this is why warm milk has a calming effect……….riddle solved.

91Veteran

For some reason I recall the IG looking at this once before, some years ago. I recall some comment then about SS computers not talking to VA computers.

As if the number of vets dying are so great that someone can’t match a printout from SS with VA records.

Crazy elf
Damn, now VBA can’t even get veterans buried correctly! Last year, here in Florida, on WFTV, Channel 9, Orlando, a veteran and wife reported the husband had been declared dead by VA. Even when they went to their nearest VHA, along with all the paperwork, the VA wouldn’t correct the FUBAR. He had been going to that VHA for about 10+ years. So, some of the employees knew him and his wife personally! It wouldn’t be until the local news… Read more »
namnibor
@Crazy elf — Maybe a giant sinkhole swallowing-up the brand new VAMC down there in Florida would make the VA get their death tally in order by counting how many AFGE Dues are no longer being paid? Or…The VA should take remedial Math and Counting Classes from none other than ‘The Count” from Sesame Street? Wait, that won’t work either because ex-VA Sec McDuck is filling-in for ‘The Count” while he finds a place for his lead parachute to land…but… Read more »
Dennis

“What’s it going to take to put the fear of GOD in these asswipes?”

Tell them all that the candy machines are being removed from the break room, OR
pledge to take away their cell phones for an hour each time they screw up. Result? Panic at first, then compliance.

91Veteran

What’s it going to take?
When these clowns making these “mistakes” are held responsible and fired.

And prosecuted if negligence is found.

Crazy elf

I say, screw that “corrective action plan”! Start prosecuting individuals asap. Make an example out of a bunch of these employees.
Follow the damn money trail.
Something is definitely stinking at VBA!

Dennis
“The Principal Deputy Under Secretary for Benefits concurred with four of five recommendations and provided acceptable corrective actions plans, but didn’t agree to enforce the requirement that proof of death be submitted prior to the release of automated burial payments. ” Does POTUS still employ a man who does not agree to enforce a requirement that dead vets prove they are dead before burial? hmmm. The absolute absurdity of VA seeps out every pore and creeps out from under every… Read more »
namnibor

That all glass conference room with pigeon droppings covered glass has been made into an ‘Art Installation” by our former “peas flies” President. Loads of work went into annexing that glass conference room as a new wing at the Museum Of Modern Art Sex Addict Den (MOMA SAD). Pigeons state that the exhibit has gone to the crows.

Crazy elf

What could one expect from “Former” idiot in charge. The first place he/she went to was “…a married gay couple’s house in Palm Springs, CA.!”
Then it was “rumored” Michelle/Michael wasn’t “… getting enough attention…” so, He/She, by herself/himself, “…flew off to a millionaires island…” without the two brats!

Ex va

MOMA SAD!!! ROFL!!!!

Crazy elf

We waited for “it”, and “it” was done late last night.
Check out this from;
“End Times Prophecy News”, “brother Jim reporting”.
Titled;
“Look What Jeff Sessions Said Immediately After He Was Confirmed”

Feb. 8, 2017 (6:22 minutes long) with a video of his appointment and confirmation! We got a new DOJ/Sheriff!

Crazy elf

Here’s another video I hope y’all watch.
From; “High Impact Flix”
Posted: 8 Feb 2017 (2:40 minutes long)
Titled;

“What If Super Bowl Commercials Aired SHAKING TRUTHS Like This?!?”

The Federal Reserve is just like the VA! Or, is the VA just like the Federal Reserve?

namnibor
Off-Topic, warm and fuzzy public announcement: “Pets For Vets” is a non-profit group helping Vets acquire service dogs *or* cats in either collaboration with the VA or when the VA has failed to accommodate the Veteran and is expanding but the link below will show the States in which there’s already chapters of Pets For Vets. “http://www.petsforvets.com/our-chapter-map/” ” The Pets… 3 to 4 million dogs and cats are euthanized each year. These animals can make excellent companion animals but never… Read more »
namnibor

Maybe having a service animal that can growl, bark, and chew on the legs of a VA Patient Advocate to alert them that the Veteran IS STILL VERY MUCH ALIVE would assist the asses at the VA in determining timely death and appropriate payments made or not? G-r-r-r-r-r-

namnibor
Like Lassie did when Timmy fell down into the well and Lassie got help…maybe a service animal could be trained to call the damn VA alerting them that a given Veteran is *still alive* and *well* for all it’s worth since the VA cannot be bothered to be linked or communicate with Social Security…and guess what any proper morgue does as protocol? Alerts SSA of a confirmed death because of….a damn DEATH CERTIFICATE!!! I need to now watch my cat… Read more »
Ex va

@ namnibor, My rescue dog is very protective of me. She snaps at people she doesn’t know. Someone dumped her at a warehouse and she was very young and negligected. She tries to be by my side all the time too. When i am really sick she won’t leave my side. Does your cat try to protect you? I knew of some mean cats that would protect their owners. Hilarious!

namnibor
@Ex va — Not so much a protective cat but one that’s highly observant of my health and moods and times to take meds and naps…and of course, stalking flying crows from the window. He’s a Maine Coon-mix and has all of that higher intelligence of that breed and picks-up on patterns easily and adopts them as his duty to remind me. He’s as aloof as cats usually are but he’s also incredibly loyal in his reminders and alerts and… Read more »
Ex va
@ namnibor, sounds like he is a cool cat. My dog doesn’t do any tricks except the paw. Pickup your meds, that is cool. Sounds like he cares about your well being. Those Maine coon cats are beautiful creatures and are suppose to be very intelligent. I had a cat that was a runt. Turned out to be the best cat i ever had. That cat is bigger than my dog. Lol! 26lbs! My dog is half that weight. He… Read more »
namnibor
@Ex va– I forgot to mention that he’s an unusually vocal cat in everything BUT your typical meowing cat. He makes quasi-raccoon chattering sounds and one other thing, much like a dog, he has from a kitten to now been one to play a cat’s version of ‘fetch’. I have this beanie lizard that was given to me by a student I was mentoring in college and I gave that to my cat when he was a wee, way too-early… Read more »
Ex va
@ namnibor, he is trying to talk to you if he is vocalizing. My dog almost does this purring thing when she is happy. It is a border terrier mix. Now she does push on door to open and closes it. I forget that trick. She sits and stares at me a lot. YouTube pays you for filming you might be able not to show yourself just your friend and some do that patreon thing too. I don’t do the… Read more »
namnibor
@Ex va — Really cool stuff. Yeah, familiar with the vocalizing/communicating, as he also has about 15 minutes of separation anxiety and HOWLS when I leave but to be clear, he does not do this if I am just going down to check my mail…like a damn dog, he actually firstly looks down to see if I have the telltale shoes on my feet…that launches the separation anxiety phase when walking out with shoes on. LOL. When I have come… Read more »
Ex va
@ namnibor, i understand the separation anxiety, she does that if i take a shower, she thinks i am leaving. She goes to her bed. Most of the time she sleeps next to me. That is funny the howling. He looks at your shoes! Smart cat! My dog sometimes will have a fit of barking when i come home and just goes crazy because i am back. Now she did go crazy when they took me by ambulance i heard… Read more »
Ex va
Seriously, pets for vets sounds like a great organization. Pets can add a lot to your life. They love and care about you and sometimes more loyal than your human friends. I do have some good friends, just don’t see them that often because of health issues. My dog really helps me in a lot of ways. If you ask ANutterVet, he can help you with the diet and care of your k-9. He is going to have a website… Read more »
Crazy elf

Here’s an article from “Military.com/Daily News”, via “Associated Press”.

“New Mexico May Allow Medical Marijuana for All Veterans”
9 Feb. 2017

It’s gone through the first process of becoming law?

Dennis
Maybe we have an opportunity here to expand the VA telehealth concept to death benefits. After all most folks nowadays carry a cell phone with a camera, right? We can call it Teledeath. The actual concept, and ultimate stakeholder outcomes, are so substantially similar to the VA idea of Telehealth that it can easily be adopted to also alleviate patient wait times in the body bags. Heck in all likelihood the exact same call could even serve the functions of… Read more »
Dennis

Tech will set us free.

Ex va

@ Dennis, too funny!

namnibor
@Dennis — There’s a slight glitch or bug in the newly proposed joint app ‘TeleDeath/Telemedicine’ with the VA in which VA employees have already begun contracted construction of VA TeleDeath/Telemedicine booths built upon the framework of a really modern and powerful catapult…spared no expense… VA OIG realizes that the VA took ‘TeleDeath’ to mean utilizing living Veteran’s body’s as catapult fodder when the VA Telemedicine Witch Dr. does not particularly care for their answer in India and these were not… Read more »
Ex va

@ Dennis, @ namnibor, and or it is suppose to contracted out to spain or Cuba or some kid living in their parents basement on a computer or down in a van by the river for billions and billions of dollars!!!! Just joking!!

namnibor
Update from VA Public Relations: “We unfortunately had some of our non-English-speaking VA TeleDeath Operators & Engineers interpret ‘Teledeath’ in their native tongues as “flinging Veterans very far away with big red button”, and that’s how the wires got crossed and the catapult came into play with VA TeleDeath, where we are sad to state that many VA crows were injured in the testing phase…we are still searching for the catapulted Veteran’s bodies. It’s a fine work of art, this… Read more »
91Veteran

Nam, like Angry Birds, but with vets.

Alive or dead.

Crazy elf
It’s now history. The “criminal elements” of the United States of America, Beware! The Department of Justice is now run by a man “Sworn to Uphold the Constitution from Enemies, Both Foreign and Domestic!” From: “Golden State Time News” Feb. 9, 2017 (11:51 minutes long) Titled: “Amazing: Jeff Sessions Swore-in and Speech as Attorney General” Check out the three executive orders President Trump signed, immediately after the swearing in of DOJ Jeff Sessions! All hell will be breaking SOON on… Read more »
namnibor

There’s a new sheriff in town. I think the National Guard need some urban exercises in this US of A. 🙂

namnibor

Call it Operation Snowflake Melt.

namnibor

McCain is getting a verbal spanking from Pres. Trump. Loving it. Pres. Trump was reacting to McCain knocking the recent Yemen Attack in which one Soldier died and others injured. Pres. Trump defended the now-Deceased Veteran, then proceeded to tell McCain that he’s been too long, too far outside the ‘game’ and did not know what he was talking about. (paraphrased)

McCain is so far up Democrats ass crack it’s becoming apparent McCain is an opportunistic political chameleon.

91Veteran

One would think that senile old Soros puppet would finally retire.

In the two articles I read, McCain always commented about it not being a successful mission by mentioning the loss of a $75 million aircraft, and then the death.

As if remembering the death of the Seal was an afterthought.

namnibor

That’s McCain ‘code’ for: “One of his heavy donors, aircraft manufacturers in AZ, were upset they lost some of McCain’s Capital Gains…oh, and then that death.

The old turtle needs to retire already. Perhaps he should be so vocal about Rome Burning in his own State of AZ with the VA Scandal…you think?

Lem

Bull, the lost aircraft will be replaced for a profit by the manufacturer. Your logic is adrift. Anything to take down a Vietnam Hero?

namnibor

Come to think of it, I would just LOVE for Benjamin to have the opportunity in his “Bad VA Art’ to have McCain playing a fiddle while the VA burns behind him…but please, NOT in a toga. 🙂

cj

@ANutterVet, @Ex va: Anyone still awake?

Lem
You are not looking at the whole statement. He equated the loss of the CPO’s life with the failed attempt to rescue prisoners in Vietnam. The fact that they tried and didn’t get the job done because the prisoners had been moved didn’t make the effort any less heroic. Same with this Seal Team Operation. The fact they tried to catch the Head of Al-Qaida in Yemen and didn’t get him but ran into an ambush is not on the… Read more »
91Veteran

Lem, I too have every right to my assessment, and I assess McCain as a senile old jackass for saying what he did.

ANutterVet

Post test. Tried posting 3 times, and don’t see my posts. Wit up wit dat?

Ex va

@ ANutterVet, glad to see you! It happens to me at times. Dat suxs! LOL!

steven g larson
Okay I’m going to add a fact story My Mother took care of my Dad who was 100 % disabled after the Korea war WHICH left him paralyzed since then,,, She got not one cent even though She was spose to under the Law ,,, Not one cent,,, feeding him dressing him,,, taking him places,,, etc etc,,, life,,, and because she did this she couldn’t work which she couldn’t build up a social security check either,,, She is owed a… Read more »
Don Karg
02/09/2017 Dear Benjamin Krause, “The President’s 2017 Budget includes $182.3 billion for VA in 2017. This includes $78.7 billion in discretionary resources and $103.6 billion in mandatory funding. Our discretionary budget request represents an increase of $3.6 billion, or 4.9 percent, over the 2016 enacted level.Feb 12, 2016”…Google That is………………………… 182,300,000,000 And the area of concern is………….28,000,000 Or .00015 % of the problem at hand. Incompetent Personnel and their corrupt spending is always a concern and at $28 Million; it… Read more »
steven g larson
Senator Daschle is the one that called the FBI on me and were coming to arrest me for asking for help in getting my disability that was exactly ONE WEEK before 9/11 The sheriff Rob stopped them ,,,to this day I can’t imagine what I would of done if they showed up,,, I will never forget that day HE CALLED me a Terriost a Viet Naum Vet fighting for my Disability,,, no apology or anything from him,,, I was totally… Read more »
Lem
Don, that is 500,000.00 for every single citizen of the U S. I don’t think even 25% are veterans. We could get $2,000,000.00 each to take care of ourselves except care for a small percentage runs that much per year. Shows how much is spent on contracts that have executives like Health Net that take over $1,500,000.00 per year for each of the top 5 executive compensation totaling over $25,000,000.00 for the top 5 executives and averaging over $5,000,000.00 per… Read more »
Dennis
As a former commercial pilot who let me tell you what “pilot error” means. It means the government does not have a clue. It means that the official response to a tragedy of aviation nature is, “We have no idea so we are gonna pin the problem on somebody.” Let me ask you about management. In the Nazi war trials the most often used defense was “just following orders”. Surely, the logic goes we must focus our attention on management,… Read more »
Crazy elf

Well, Don Karg, let’s start prosecuting the “pilots”!

Jo3n

@Don Karg, does discretionary mean the VA can spend the taxpayers money any way they want? So I don’t have to die to get death benefits? May 1st will be 100 days in office.

91Veteran
Does anyone else get the sense the VAIG is jumpng over dollars to save pennies here? That they are going after some easy pickings while ignoring the billions shoveled at favored contractors? Yes, it’s good to see waste or incompetence corrected or insuring proper benefits are provided when they should be, and not paid when they shouldnt, but when was the last time the IG took a serious look at some high dollar items? Yes, $2.8 million is some serious… Read more »
namnibor

“Finally, with the list of things that have to be corrected to fix this, it should cause one to wonder what other programs the VA operates in such a grab-ass manner.”

I would guess the fiduciary program would be right at or near top of that list. Did we ever really hear an itemized, detailed OIG report into the insane overages at the new Denver, VAMC Black Hole Project, other than “oopsy”?

Dennis
You want to see the VA OIG going after fractions of a cent vs. the internal cost of VA corruption? Google on over to the VA OIG homepage. Count the number of individual vets or families of vets that the sought prosecution over and brag about. Now count the number of VA crimes committed by VA folks they sought prosecution over and brag about. Even if fully prosecuted and all money recovered from individual fraudulent vets/families, it is still less… Read more »
namnibor

“I bet there are some LONG noses in the OIG…”– Seeing how their heads are always seemingly up their own asses they should be anal retentively quite sore after these last 8 years of self-imposed lambasting themselves.
Now I’m hungry for a good Gyro.

Crazy elf

@Dennis,
As Batman’s side-kick Robin would exclaim, “Shade’s under Pinocchio’s nose, Batman!”

91Veteran

Sub

namnibor

Sanctuary Cities are still refusing to reinstate the travel bans put in-place by Pres. Trump. Was just announced a San Francisco Judge ruled again against the travel ban…these snowflakes are really testing the patience of this Nation.

Crazy elf
namnibor, If you can find it, there’s a “female illegal immigrant” being detained by ICE out in Phoenix, Az. since last night. She had been deported three or four times, according to the news article. There was about 200 protesters. Until the local law enforcement showed up. I can’t remember which news source I saw this on. I saw it this morning. __________________________ I’m still waiting for something to take place so I can put it on here. “It’s” supposed… Read more »
Crazy elf

@namnibor,
I forgot, the female illegal immigrant’s husband and children are “ALLEGEDLY” U.S. Citizens!
That’s why the protesters were out!

Dennis

Logan, there is no sanctuary.

namnibor
I always loved the pretty lightshow while floating-up to the zapper when everyone must undergo the ritual of Carrousel when they reach the age of 30. Well-worth the trip to the zapper to live in utopia until recycled into protein drink or whatever the zapper did after Carrousel…they were admittedly quite light-lipped about that stuff my creative mind still wonders about. Congress Critters and ALL Federal Employees at the upper levels should also have their own form of Carrousel and… Read more »
Crazy elf

Right after Jeff Sessions was sworn in as the new DOJ Director, he said, (paraphrasing) There was nothing wrong with the “pause” not allowing unvetted refugees in our country!
Watch the video of his swearing in!

Dennis
Don’t you just love Google? Google proved to me just now that the Veterans Affairs folks see “deception” as a higher “art” form. I can prove it but the effect is better to see it yourself. Google “Veterans Administration deception”. On my results it returns as the top hit an actual VA web page courtesy of their Office of Public Affairs that talks about this very thing! The article itself ivolves fishing, (not a typo) but it is the headline… Read more »
Crazy elf

Dennis,
Did you read the article dated January 2015 over “Veterans Administration deception” in VA?
It’s what took place in Aurora Colorado VHA vs. a couple of females who brought unwanted sexual assault complaints. They were intimidated into changing their stories. They weren’t even allowed to bring their attorneys to the meeting. Which is a violation of law.
There’s a couple of other stories in the article as well!

The VA upper management went after the author of the article.

Jo3n

I did watch the video of supposedly the United States Attorney General. He didn’t mention anything Trump didn’t want him to. He did good. He’s still the same bigot there that he is in Alabama. Hope he can pull off what Trump wants. Otherwise, he’ll be facing the charges against him that he left in Alabama.

cj

@ANutterVet,@Ex va: Anyone stil awake?

Ex va

@ cj, how you doing?

cj

@Ex va: Hey Ex va, doing not to bad, Thursdays are always a good day for me. How are you tonight?

Ex va

@cj, still got the flu. Glad your having a good one. Haven’t seen much of ANutterVet, he sounded busy today.

cj

@Ex va: Sorry to hear, I didn’t know you were battling the flue, that sux. ANutterVet probably needs some time away from the computer. I know he mentioned a need to get some other things done.

Ex va

@ cj, immusuppresants, i hate them. ANutterVet, trying to do a lot with building a website. I think it will be great. Not a lot of talk today on Ben’s blog. I did get some sleep last night. Tonight can’t hardly breathe with this flu bug.

cj
@Ex va: The flue is tough enough for a person who is in great shape. Not so good for people with disabilities, it only adds to the extreme discomfort they already have. I don’t want to comment on Bens Blog about the topics at hand. All the veterans here are out of my league, I feel like an idiot coplared to everyone else here. I don’t have the capacity to think like they do. That is fine, I still read… Read more »
91Veteran

Cj, don’t sell yourself short.

You have an insight into some things that cuts right to the heart of the matter.

As do many others here. Its best to always see what someone else thinks on a topic.

You also have the perspective of a service connected non combat vet if I recall correctly. Your experience for other veterans in the same situation is important.

ANutterVet
@cj – Hey Brother, I want to let you know that you offer and share with your experience in life; wit, insight, comfort, and fantastic humor. And, you show that you know when to apply it. Like others on Ben’s Blog, I consider you a Veteran that has great compassion for your Brothers and Sisters. I want to personally thank you, and to cheer you, and others, to keep sharing. Don’t give up or toss your special gifts aside. Veterans… Read more »
cj
@91Veteran, @ANutterVet? Hey guys, thanks for your words of encouragement, I hear what your saying. You know, somedays I’m in a fog, can’t think cleary, etc. On days like that, when I read the post’s , I do feel like a kid amongst adults. Residuals of a TBI is all. Today, I put 2 1/2 hours going back and forth to the va for an appointment, because they called and said there was a significant change in my MRI compared… Read more »
91Veteran
Cj, why were they doing the MRI? Did he say what they can’t fix? Are they admitting things are so bad they are giving up? I would be rather POd if I went in for an MRI and some quack did that to me. Really doc? So, you won’t mind if I immediately go to the patient advocate and tell them I want a 2nd opinion by the chief of the clinic, and will then go to the directors office… Read more »
cj
@91Veteran: This new pcp wanted another MRI of my back to justify rx’ing Morphine. The day of the MRI the nurse calls and says “there is a SIGNIFICANT change since the last MRI and the doctor wants you to make an appointment right away” Today was that appointment. He tries to explaing to me what I have known since I was 17, I had to correct him twice in the pronunciation of the injury. Then when he tried to explain… Read more »
ANutterVet
@cj , @Ex va , @91Veteran , @Crazy elf , @Namnibor , @Lem To All Veterans- If you’ve been on any type of opiate [opioid] medication [Percocet, Oxycodone, Morphine, Methadone, etc.], for a long period of time, you need to visit and read the webpage listed below; “https://www.opiate-freedom-center.com/opioid-addiction-naturally-increase-your-bodies-endorphins-serotonin/” I have been arguing and fighting with my VA PCP on many fronts and issues. Supplementation while on an opiate medication is one such issue. From a Veteran that is a well… Read more »
cj

@ANutterVet: Saved the link, and instructions, will check it out tomorrow with a clear head.

ANutterVet

@cj – Don’t forget to check out your other medications besides the morphine. I discovered that the information in the link, that the VA doesn’t share with Veterans. They are leading us to believe that they are helping us, and at the same time not helping us. Treating us like a fool.

cj

Compared not complared………

cj

@Ex va: What is an immusuppresant?

cj

@Ex va: I just gogled it. You had an organ transplant?

Ex va
@ cj, you are far from being out of league with anyone of them. I usually like to read the article and everyone’s posts but i know it is a blog and not everyone can explain themselves adequately because of disability, or ability, to me it is about sincerity and a little humor sometimes is great. I know you get a little emotional too when you hear how wrong a Veteran is being treated. It hurts me too and if… Read more »
cj
@Ex va: I hear what your saying, I would do the exact same thing if I ever won the lottery or some extremely lucky event happened as that. Your right, it does get me angry when I read how veterans are getting screwed over. We just can’t give up…..that is exactly what they want…then they win. I refuse to lose a battle with them, so far I have won every single fight I have waged against them, and will continue… Read more »
Ex va

@ cj, well that makes me happy. I love it when a Veteran wins what he earned in the first place. I won’t stop squeeking. Lol!! That is true. I am putting together another group of letters and i hope i can get healthy enough to start visiting some offices again. I guess i do need to start playing the lottery too. LOL!

cj

@Ex va. Oh hell yeah, you can’t win if you don’t play. I know the odds are astonomical, but even if I never win? At least I know I am contributing to making someone else achieveing their dream……….a win win. It is fun to dream about what you would do if you won. Sure takes your mind off things for a little while anyway.

Ex va

@ cj, you are making me want to play the lottery. LOL! You are right you are helping someone else with their dream too. Hadn’t thought of it that way. I am going to start doing it. LOL! Maybe get an rv and see the country. Go somewhere warm in winter time. That sounds great!

Ex va
@ cj, I believe that the body can block pain out. I haven’t experienced it but i have heard of stories like yours. Miracles do happen, people don;t want to believe in them. I would say that your body has adapted somehow and i would say it is a miracle. A friend at where i was employed dad had problems with blocked arteries, every artery was like 75-95 percent blockage. A vein grew around these blocked arteries and inserted itself… Read more »
cj

@Ex va: That sounds like it would be fun, travel the country, and have time to enjoy your surroundings. I know they have those rv clubs, You could join one of those and meet at different places, and get to know a lot of new friends, that enjoy the same things.

cj
@Ex va: That is true, my brother in law, same thing a new vein grew around the blocked artery. Also true about the spine fusing itslef. I have seen some really great neurosurgeons and they have all said the same thing. There is noway to fix the damage in my back, but over time the pain will be less and less as the bones start to fuse themselves. Meanwhile, the va has been trying to convince me for many years… Read more »
Ex va

@ cj, my ra and other diseases they treat with immosuppresants because the body attacks joints, organs and any system. So, they try to stop the body from causing inflammation and pain. Rhematory diseases, they don’t have cures, just treatments that are suppose to help. Immune system is over active.

cj

@Ex va:I see, that is terrible. and sounds very painfull. Not the kind of pain I have, mine is controllable, yours is the kind that feels like a knife is being twisted into your bones……..geez the the thought makes me cringe.

Ex va
@ cj, the bone erosion and pain can get really bad at times. I would like to get into some kind of remission. I don’t know but i think your back is the worse. I can’t imagine how awful that feels. I get back pain and it is really bad at times. Does the weather affect you? The weather can really mess me up, i feel it before it rains. It is weird. Feels like an ice pick. I drop… Read more »
cj
@Ex va: I am 59 now? Have had this since I was 17, so yes very much use to it. It may be painful, if it just happened yesterday. The body is an amazing thing, it is able, over time to block things out. I know they are dumbfounded when they look at x-rays or MRI’s, and then they see me walk in like nothing is wrong at all. On more than one occasion they have insinuated that those were… Read more »
cj

@Ex va: Ex va, I better get some rest. I have an appointment today at the va. Hope you sleep well. talk soon. God Bless you, and everyone one Bens world.

Windguy
EX. Have you tried Curcumin supplements? I have DISH Syndrome – Diffuse Ideopathic Spinal Hyper-Ostosis. All the nasty gaps I used to have L5 S1 are now fused with brand new bone and a handfull more vertebra have been fused/ossified. All the extra ossification along the spine is painful. Very painful. No surgeries – too much mass to remove. NSAIDs fragged my esophagus. Pain meds make me drool. My mainstay has been acupuncture. I recently got on a regimen of… Read more »
91Veteran

Good to know windguy. Thanks. I can’t take NSAIDS.

Windguy

Forgot to mention – look for curcumin – turmeric – that has bioperine or black pepper extract in combination. The bioperine quadruples the bio availability of the turmeric.

ANutterVet
@Windguy , @Ex va – Windguy, good info in your post to Ex va. Ex va, the active compound in turmeric is called, curcumin. which is in the curcuminoids family. Curcumin has a powerful anti-inflammatory effect, and is a very strong antioxidant. Along with the supplement that Windguy suggested, you can also put turmeric in your daily foods as well. Many people make turmeric teas, add it to sauces, gravies, dressings, and put it on sandwiches. Google, “what are the… Read more »
Crazy elf
Today is Friday, 10 Feb. 2017. I wonder what kind of “dump” VA will spring on us!? Has anyone had any communication from “Seymore Klearly”? Last thing I read was he was helping a friend/veteran! @namnibor, Concerning that “illegal immigrant” being detained/deported out in Phoenix, Az. Here’s the current information on her. From: “Next News Network”, Gary Franci reporting. Dated: Feb. 10, 2017 (8:30 minutes long)! Titled; “AZ Deport Drama: Created to Show “Evil of Trumpish”!” Seems she has a… Read more »
namnibor
Yep, can see how that all rolls downhill, Crazy elf. Did anyone catch that Army top General Lewis was only demoted to Brigadier General for using Gov’t. charge cards to pay for strippers, parties, and all that goes with it? This was one of Obama’s favorite buddies and I expect this rather padded “punishment” directly reflected that. The discipline in the Military was being eroded by last 8 years of lackadaisical attention to our Troops by our ex-POTUS Obama. Entitlement… Read more »
Crazy elf
A “0-1” in the Army is a “Second Lt.” or what we call “Butter Bar”! In the Navy, they’re called an “Ensign”, or “Almost an Officer”! Yep, gotta agree, that “General” definitely needs a wake-up call. As does everyone in government. Commit a crime, go to jail. In my opinion, *IF* Mr. Sessions is diligent and actually going to follow the law, as he is demanding of everyone, then maybe we’ll see some actual retribution against all law breakers! At… Read more »
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