A Presidents Day VA Caregiver Program Investigation

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VA Caregiver Program

Few things break my heart more than seeing people harmed by bureaucratic abuses of severely disabled veterans by the VA Caregiver Program.

This Presidents Day, for readers willing to dig, I would appreciate hearing about your views and findings on the VA Caregiver Program. The long and short of it is VA is kicking families out of the program whose severely disabled veterans are still in need of benefits.

Families receive compensation to help offset the extreme financial burden of families to care for veterans who are severely disabled.

Some bean counter somewhere inside the halls of VA decided they needed to drop veterans from the entitlement rolls about two years ago. Since then, families have been dropped from the program with little to know explanation. When they get an explanation, the statements have little basis in the actual laws governing the program.

These benefits rejections, at least in the manner done, are violations of due process resulting in foreseeable hardships for families with severely disabled veterans.

From my perspective, those VA employees engaged in booting deserving families out of the program are guilty of fraud and should be held accountability in a personal capacity. I would like you to help us dig in to find solutions and answers.

As for me, we had a death in the family this weekend linked to Iraq burn pits and cancer. I plan to write about it tomorrow and did not have a chance to dive into the Caregiver Program for this post. I do, however, have loads of data from a VA FOIA I plan to share soon.

For now, I am reposting this article from Lauren Price of VeteransWarriors that addresses problems Caregiver families are experiencing now. Please let us know your experience or what you find while researching in the comments section.

See it here, or you can read the post by Lauren Price below:

The Law of Unintended Consequences – How the VA Violates Another of Its Own Laws

“…unintended consequences … are outcomes that are not the ones foreseen and intended by a purposeful action. The term was popularized in the twentieth century by American sociologist Robert K. Merton. Unintended consequences can be grouped into three types: Perverse result: A perverse effect contrary to what was originally intended (when an intended solution makes a problem worse). This is sometimes referred to as ‘backfire’.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unintended_consequences

The Department of Veterans Affairs has a long and checkered history of breaking its own (and other) federal laws. That is not in dispute by even the staunchest of VA supporters. In many cases, it is generally professed to be that “a lack of training” is the root of the problem.

Yet when we see a widespread and growing pattern of actual contradiction of the law; one cannot conclude anything other than the violations being deliberate. Such is the case in the ever-growing, systemic mass revocations of the VA’s “Veteran Caregiver Program”. We believe it all began two years ago as a “testing of the waters” subversive policy change; has now come full circle to what is being propagated as “an official Policy Change”. However, there is one major FLAW in this “policy change”… that being; the VA does not have the legal authority to alter the architecture, intent or letter of the law.

Even the most cursory of internet searches provides an eye-opening and disturbing picture emerging; that within the last two years, roughly 8,000 veterans and their caregivers have been “revoked” from the program. Even more have had their “Tier” (level of need as prescribed by law) lowered down to the lowest level. To further research these reports, we began surveying those who were terminated or lowered by the program officials. In about four weeks, we have had nearly 250 responses from across the country – all of which support the reports we had found. The surveys can be found here: https://poll.fbapp.io/va-caregiver-terminations and here https://surveyplanet.com/57e670540fd7773010cf1eb0 .

In spite of the blatant lack of authority, the VA has moved ahead with the “Policy Change” to the extent that they are demanding under the threat of revocation, (their term for termination from the program), that every veteran and caregiver agrees to a set of terms and conditions the VA claims they have a right to enforce. The true irony in this is that the VA will continually spew that they “care for the best interests of the veteran”; when nothing could be further from the truth. This is evident by their actions. This “policy change” is stripping not just a financial stipend from the veteran and their caregiver; but health insurance, support resources, respite care and a host of other services that remaining in the program provides. The bigger, more sinister side of these actions is the “unintended consequences” of these terminations.

These changes began in earnest two years ago; but have picked up momentum over the last few months. Last fall, eighty-eight percent (88%) of the entire case load in the Prescott, AZ VCP office was terminated in just a matter of weeks. Yet there are two Caregiver Coordinators handling a case load of thirty veterans. In the Puget Sound, WA VCP; the number of revocations was not as radical, yet in spite of reducing their case load, they doubled their CGC staff! (http://www.thenewstribune.com/…/milita…/article56571708.html ). So far, the metro Denver, CO region has seen the most drastic numbers for terminations, (http://www.denverpost.com/…/veterans-in-denver-see-cuts-in…/ ).

In nearly every single revocation case Veteran Warriors has examined, we have found nearly identical language; “The veteran no longer requires support”, “Graduated”, “Recovery-based”, and “A Temporary Program Designed to See the Veteran Graduate”. Not one of the terms is in the “Caregivers and Veterans Omnibus Health Services Act of 2010” or its companion Final Rule (published January 9, 2015). Even more egregious is the now well-publicized dismissal of using the Activities of Daily Living (ADL’s) as part of the criteria for eligibility. Again, there have been no amendments to the law and no authorized policy changes which would have provided the VA with the authority to make these sweeping alterations to the program.

Alongside these unlawful terminations have been threats to caregivers and outright intimidation; even actual fabrication or alteration of veteran’s records to support the terminations and even threats and retaliation against caregivers who have challenged the Coordinators. There are “clinical evaluations” which appear to cursory reviews of exclusively VA medical records and those Coordinators who are doing this; in many cases, deliberately excluded recent, significant medical information in these evaluations. In many cases, the Coordinators are aware of the veteran’s deterioration(s) yet annotate the file that the veteran has “significantly improved” and “no longer requires a caregiver”.

We have discovered another violation of the law; when a Caregiver Coordinator admitted that she would “be the one to handle the appeal if (the Caregiver) went over her head”. In most cases, one could assume this was simply a threat or even hyperbole yet we have heard statements like this from other regions of the country as well. This has shown us is our theory about the membership of the mandated “Appeal Boards” may well be accurate; that there are no “Appeal Boards” held; that the Director’s and VISN Directors simply “concur” with the revocation because THAT is actually their protocol.

The structural damage to the program and the veterans’ goes far beyond just the stipend loss. There is a massive ripple effect which takes place when the stipend is taken away. Many of these veterans suffer from severe PTSD. In nearly every case, the caregiver has had to leave full time employment to care for the veteran more than full time; far exceeding what would be normally considered “spousal duties”. These families are being left with no access to medical insurance for the caregiver, a loss of a significant income and facing the possibility of having to leave the veteran alone to return to work. This exacerbates the veteran’s symptoms AND any progress or leveling off of the veteran’s symptoms is completely lost as soon as this happens.

For those veterans with serious physical injuries, they are left without any assistance with such tasks as dressing, bathing and even feeding themselves. Each family is being set up for failure and deliberately being put at risk for; foreclosures, homelessness, suicide, domestic violence, bankruptcy, child endangerment and even murder. These are not hyperbole or theoretical.

The consequences of ripping away scaffolding that supports these injured veterans is actually happening. The effects are already being felt in the veteran community and it will only get worse if these unlawful changes are allowed to continue to fester. The law which governs this program was put in place because the civilian community is ill-equipped to provide “adult day care” to thousands of profoundly disabled veterans; nor should it be required to.

There is no greater embarrassment a nation can suffer than to ignore its war wounded or refuse them the care, benefits and services they earned.

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cj
cj

I whole-heartedly agree with the statement,(There is no greater embarrassment a nation can suffer than to ignore its war wounded or refuse them the care, benefits and services they earned.) I would add to that, how a nation cares for it’s elderly, and mentaly ill. If our government was fullfilling it’s promise to take care of those injured in battle, there would not be a need for all the other organizations such as Wounded Warrior,Veterans Warriors, etc. No money to take care of injured veterans, but plenty for unions, and pet projects. Plenty of money to be paid in restitution to prisoners at gitmo, and plenty to be paid to the enemy (Iran). Plenty to be paid to ISIS, and all the other so-called fredom fighters around the globe. Just nothing for those injured fredom fighting for THIS country. Every single Senator, and Congressman should hang their heads in shame. SHAME ON EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM SHAAAAAAAAAMMMMMMEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ex va
Ex va

@ cj, well stated.

VAISLYING INC
VAISLYING INC

PENDEJO VA !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!111 DELAY [email protected] DENEY DENAY @ DIE VETS IS THE MANTRA OF VA DEATHCARE FROM SATANIC HELL !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

cj
cj

Ben, I am sorry for your loss, my condolences, to you and your family. So sorry to hear of the loss of another veteran…….this need to stop.

Ex va
Ex va

@ Ben Krause, so sorry to hear of your loss. My prayers are with you and your family. God Bless.

Seymore Klearly
Seymore Klearly

Ben,

Truly sorry to hear about the loss of a loved one. Thoughts and Prayers are with you and your family.

Crazy elf
Crazy elf

@Ben,
Sorry to hear about your loss! Hope everything gets better in the future!

@Seymore,
Glad to see you back! Hope your well!

As far as today’s blog,
“cj” was spot on. Problem is, VA employees have absolutely NO “SHAME”. They’re taught how to screw veterans out of their “rights”!
Follow the money trail. Where the Hell Is it going?

The wife and I watched a news report this past weekend. It had something to do with an “elderly female (extremely disabled) veteran” and how she was having 28% of her compensation taken away for some reason! I believe it was something like Ben wrote about this morning!
If I, or my wife, can find it. I’ll put it on today.

Lastly, did y’all notice the dates. 2010 to 2015! All during the “Obamination Administration”!
He’s not only screwed veterans, he’s screwed active duty military members. With all the information coming out about his “many failures”, it’s a wonder he hasn’t “slivered away” to some hole, like the snake he is!
We can only hope President Trump makes all those asswipes pay for their crimes against humanity, SOON!

Lem
Lem

In deed. I did notice the change took place when the GOP took over the House and control of the purse strings. Thus entitlement reduction is back on the front burner. And more to come because the “liberals” will be able to do nothing to curtail it.

Time you woke up elf, don’t you think? Who is on your side? Or do you care. Just want to blame the other side is doing with your “alternate facts.”

Crazy elf
Crazy elf

@Lem,
Here we go again! These atrocities took place during Obama’s time in office! 2010 to 2015 are the dates of the report!
Time for you to wake up!
Now the Republicans are in charge. Why don’t you wait to see what’s going to happen!
Are you like Pelosi, don’t know which President is in office?

namnibor
namnibor

Benjamin — Thoughts and prayers to you and your family.

Today’s article screams one thing to me: These rat bastards are STEALING rightfully earned benefits right from under Veterans and their family’s noses at their most vulnerable moments in life.

FUCK YOU VA. I almost think Satan himself would have more empathy than the VA rat bastards possess. Or, it’s Satan’s demons that get their training at the VA and go back to Hell until remedial Hell training is required then the demons return to the VA for on-the-job-training of torture.
FUCK YOU VA.

Peterson, L.H.
Peterson, L.H.

I am one of the VA Caregiver Programs victims. They “graduated” me from the program without reviewing my medical records. I’m too pissed to continue writting.

cj
cj

@Peterson, L.H. Your story is exactly what Ben is looking for to be posted here. Please post, so the rest of the country, and all veterans, know what these dirty bastards have done. It is an important story you have to tell.

Martin
Martin

I too, just got revoked from the CG program. The reasons are a lie. I looked up the regs in 38 USC 1720. All lies.

Michelle Porter
Michelle Porter

@Ben let me first extend my deepest condolences for you loss.

I agree 110% with your review. The caregiver coordinator in my area is the epitome of government waste. My first experience was an evaluation by her which was never submitted because “she” felt I did not qualify. This was followed with several requests that she turned a blind eye. When she finally submitted my request, it was denied. I did appeal to the VISN and it was denied, but when I asked the reason, it was discovered that she did not forward all the information that I requested be included in the appeal. I subsequently filed another request and it was approved. Her behavior has been less than professional. She has remarked about her personal health suffering; I am a sympathic person, but it was completely unprofessional. She has limited knowledge of the rules and regs of the program and is often presented with information from caregivers. The program was created to assist caregivers with the health and wellness of the veteran and it is treated as if it is their personal bank account. This needs to change. As caregivers, we deal with stress that is beyond comparison and the struggle with the caregiver program adds unnecessary stress. Thank you for this article it is validation of all our struggles.

Missy
Missy

I agree…i had a coordinator do that as well. She constantly kept denying me saying he didnt fit the category. Everything i do, is nore then a significant other should do. This time i sent it to Atlanta with a letter. Another coordinator reached out to me, but we have been playing phone tag. This va has gotten 4 years of free larbor and of more then i am supposed to do as a significant other

Crazy elf
Crazy elf

In my humble opinion, a complete *AUDIT* of VA is needed. These things CANNOT, and SHOULD NOT, be allowed to continue!
There’s MASSIVE corruption, waste, fraud and abuse within the whole VA system! Until an outside accounting firm, one which is trustworthy and loyal to the American People is brought in, these things will continue unabated!

____________________

@”cj”, check this out!

From:
“MLordandGod”
via: “your news wire” &
“Thumbnail image”
Dated;
Feb. 19, 2017. (19:35 min. long)
Titled:

“BREAKING: CIA And Mossad Behind DC Pedo Ring – DHS Insider”

It’s not just about “Pedogate”. Plus, lots of names are mentioned!
Lastly, *IF* certain security agencies have videos from Podesta’s laptop, from “Pedophile Island”, they should release (leak) them to the public. We have a right, under federal law, to know what our elected and appointed officials have been up to for so long!

There’s other new videos surfacing concerning this issue coming out almost daily!

cj
cj

@Crazy elf: Thank you, I saved the link for later. Finally got my computer straightened out so I can watch an entire video without being bounced out of the browser. This hurting childeren, turns my stomach. Like I said before, even the lowest of the low in prisons around the world, DO NOT put up with those in their ranks that have hurt childeren. Yet these elites get away with it? There is something very wrong, progressives=The scurge of the earth.

cj
cj

@Crazy elf: On the audit………………..asap, no time should be wasted, ACCOUNTABLILTY NOW!!! Prison for those who would unjustly deny an injured veteran, or their family, the help they so desperately need. Annymous, you see this? Time for you to start accidentally diverting funds from terror supporting states (Saudi Arabia, Iran) into the accounts of veterans families in need of help, worldwide. I know you can do it. These damn politiician, have no trouble getting 1500 buck or more, for a plate of damn food. But can’t pay an extra penny to a caregiver…………………….Martha……….get me blunderbuss we’ve some hunting to do.

cj
cj

My meds are kicking in, can you tell? Will be back later, God Bless you all.

Patti Cannon
Patti Cannon

I feel the same way as L.H. Peterson, it is so difficult to put in writing how stressed, angry, frustrated and hopeless so many of us caregivers feel. My blood pressure skyrockets when I think about the injustices.
My son was shot through the neck by a sniper in Iraq when he was 20 years old. He is a quadriplegic. He is paralyzed from the chest down, in a wheelchair. That should say it all, I do most everything for him. So I won’t go into all the details of our daily life. We have been Tier1 from the beginning of the program. I’ve been fighting to get a higher tier for about 3 years. His injuries are catastrophic, to say the least. It is obvious to anyone with a pair of eyeballs.
I CAN’T deal with the “makeup a story/lie” tactics used by CGC’s anymore, I am not mentally or intellectually equipped to get through the bureaucracy. I’m not as well versed as many and am intimidated by the whole system.
The fact is, most of us have been beaten down to the point of giving up which is exactly what they are hoping for.

cj
cj

@Patti Cannon: You know what? You may have just hit upon something in your post. Maybe there needs to be an advocacy group, made up of pro-bono lawyers, to help caregivers like you. I can’t imagine the stress you are subjected to on a daily basis, let alone being drained physically and mentally. I can however see exactly how it would be diffacult to think clearly and precisely, in order wage a successfull battle with the va. I want to personally say I am sorry your son was injured in such a manner. I do hope you receive what you seek in quick order. God Bless you and your son. My prayers go out to you, and all family member caregivers. This is a group of people not often thought about, or even mentioned in the press. Your like a shadow army of the very best this country has to offer, and I thank you dearly for what you do. You don’t have to battle these bastards alone, is there a veterans assistance commision in your county, or neighboring county? If not contact an amvets office. Both can help and serve you better than all the other VSO’s. Again God Bless you and your son.

91Veteran
91Veteran

Patti, Can you provide more detail on this program? When did it start? What are the different Tier levels?
It’s tough for me to understand this program without knowing more, but it sounds much like the Voc Rehab program where money is provided for the program, but little kings and queens sit in judgement as to who gets the benefit and who does not…with very little oversight.

Have you been threatened by this coordinator? Have you contacted your Congressman? If the coordinator decides something, what proof do they need for their decision? Can you appeal their decision to someone?

I can’t imagine what kind of bad press it would cause the VA for a mother and her son to appear on the evening news describing how the VA jerks you around.

Thanks for any detail you can provide.

T-Bird
T-Bird

I too am the proud caregiver of a disabled veteran who requires my assistance round the clock. Ladies and gentlemen we are …THE INVISIBLE SOLDIERS. Thanks to each of you for providing care to your soldier and not leaving him or her behind like the VA has done.
The Denver VA is horrifying. Not only have they neglected their responsibility to provide appropriate medical care but they have been the cause of additional mental and physical wounds as well. I have been a registered nurse in Denver for over 30 years and I am speechless at what I have observed.. I have come to realize much like pediatrics, veteran have special medical needs as well. Often times we as caregiver’s are dealing with the challenges that arise without any understanding of what exactly it is that caused the situation. I know that for my soldier he has a TBI/severe PTSD, burn pit exposure and he was force to take Mefloquine while in Iraq. There we no words to describe the anger and outrage that I felt when I found out that the FDA had not officially conducted the final stage of testing for this anti-malaria medication. This “wonder drug” was created by the government to be given to the military and the final testing was conducted on men that were incarcerated and the soldiers. The FDA violated there own policy and procedure for the sake of saving a dime. This medication officially earned itself a “BLACK WARNING LABEL” when it was determined to be the cause of permanent brain damage due to neuro toxicity. No one has acknowledged wrong doing or accepted responsibility for this medication, much like agent orange. Here’s where it gets crazy. The signs and symptoms of toxicity are exactly the same as TBI/PTSD…Since my fiancee’s condition worsened he has been unable to work and has had two going on three surgeries due to the delay and/or denial of care. When he did finally get to see someone at the VA it was a med student who is required to successfully complete that rotation as a requirement of graduation. These students are being held hostage by the establishment and forced to provide substandard care to our men and women of the military. Who protects them? I have never been so outraged. I had an opportunity to speak with some of the students and the conversation helped me to start connecting the dots. To say that the VA is doing a huge injustice to our future physicians is an understatement. I have been researching the relationship between the VA and the medical schools that are affiliated with them. There is an organization that is tasked with oversight of that relationship between the med schools and the VA. Interesting how the Denver VA is such a disgrace in this community and yet the very same students that are forced to provide substandard care to the veterans are the same students that are providing care at the Colorado University Health Science Hospital that is ranked in the top 5 hospitals in the nation. If anyone else would like the contact information for the oversight organization please let me know. When this roller coaster started15 months ago I felt confident that my soldier would never be one of the 23 suicides each and every day. Beautiful, courageous men and women who were prepared to make the ultimate sacrifice for their country…Our country, America land of the free…Home of the BRAVE. No one should have to endure the physical and mental wounds of war only to come home feeling broken, unable to find your place or purpose in life and die a slow death at the hands of the VA… I cant imagine how these soldiers feel. They come to the realization that they now require the assistance of others to take care of their most basic human needs. I’m not sure that I have ever fought so hard before in my life. We thought that we were over the difficult hump only to find out that there is a lesion growing on my soldiers spinal cord that could or could not be cancer. We are awaiting a biopsy and spine surgery. come to find out after reviewing the medical records that this lesion was identified back in September 2016 and no one told him anything other then there is nothing wrong. The Caregiver programs decision to deny our request was based on falsified documents that were outdated and lies. The day that we received the caregiver program denial letter in the mail my soldier quietly cried himself to sleep after writing his “good-bye letters” to those he loved the most. He no longer leaves the house and the deepest darkest depression has consumed him.
Veteran organizations are advocates for the veterans according to the job description, however it is common knowledge that they have a vested interest in the VA staying open instead of making it privatized. I have a ton of information that I have collected over the last year and I have already contacted Congress Coffman’s office to request a compliant inquire but he has dropped the ball and I have yet to get a firm answer. I don’t know where else to turn for assistance. I do believe that there needs to be an independent organization that fights for the rights of the veteran and their families. If anyone has any ideas please don’t hesitate to contact me and please share. I would be more then happy to head up a movement by the invisible soldiers and family to preserve the the rights of our brave military members. Thank you for letting me rant. I feel like I hear our story over and over again. We as individuals are tires but together we could move mountains.

91Veteran
91Veteran

T-bird, your description of the malaria pill is similar to what we faced with the Anthrax and Botulinum vaccines in the Gulf War.

Both were considered experimental, but the FDA did like they always do and let the DOD do whatever they want…even though the FDA had jurisdiction over the manufacturers license.

It took years of pushing and a congressional investigation into the sloppy practices used in making the Anthrax shots before the FDA got kinda serious.

The report said the manufacturer had no idea as to the potency of each dose, and foreign material was found in some of the doses, including material from gaskets.

When the report was issued, the FDA finally woke up and told the manufacturer that they were going to pull their license. The DOD stepped in and convinced the FDA to back off if the manufacturer shut down their production line for 2 weeks to clean up.

If I recall correctly, around 2 million doses were affected either through contamination or otherwise unusable.

Then SecDef Cohen said they would keep those doses anyway for use in emergencies.

This was back when they required everyone in uniform to get the shot.

I haven’t heard whatever happened to the Anthrax shot, if it is still mandated, nor have I heard anything more on the Botulinum shot.

As for contacting anyone for help, I live in Grand Junction. I can say Gardner’s office is completely worthless.

Bennet’s office will respond, but I suggest calling his local office and formally asking for an inquiry. If they do so, they should send you a Release of Information form to sign.

All of that can be handled through email.

As for Coffman, although I think he tries to help veterans on a national level based on his position on the House VA committee, getting his office to help individual veterans might be like too many other congressman. They only respond if you live in their district, and only then if you call their office and badger them.

Good luck.

LP
LP

Anthrax shots are mandatory for any Soldier deploying or ‘taking’ an assignment overseas. At least it was until 2010

Rick B
Rick B

My opinion isn’t going to be a popular one but here goes. First I believe the VA has the authority to write their own rules and regulations, as do all executive level departments of the US Government. This authority is one reason why we now have President Trump. Look at the mess the EPA and other agencies have caused for our nation. Another problem, is that we just went thru 8 years of the most liberal & progressive changes in our country, these last 8 years has changed the face of our country for the worse. Even now the liberals are so concerned about what the President is going to do that they are already talking impeachment even before there is anything proven that would be an impeachable offense.

As to the VA Caregiver program. In my opinion, this program like many programs created in the last 10-12 years was created to benefit only those veterans who served after 9-11. To me the way this program was created was unfair, even prejudicial if you consider the many veterans who did not qualify because of the years a veteran served.

This program just like the concurrent receipt payment program, left out so many veterans again based on the years of service they served. Many veterans service organizations lauded the law that allowed concurrent receipt for those veterans that had retired with 20 years of service and even some who had retired with 15 years of service under a little know program of voluntary early retirement for the benefit of the services. But Chapter 61 retirees ( those retired because of disability rated at 30% or more) with less than 20 years were left out in the cold. It was said about the current receipt program, that chapter 61 retirees would be added to the program at a later date, and the same veteran organizations that lauded the program promised to fight to include all retirees in the program. Surprise ! not one of these “so called” veteran organizations did anything of value to bring to add chapter 61 retirees.

Now we have the caregivers program that some believe is being mismanaged by the VA. First, if it is being mismanaged that would be no surprise, and no different than the many other mismanaged programs of the VA, from compensation, to vocational rehabilitation to the clothing allowances. But factually, the VA has the authority to write the rules as they see fit based on the laws the congress has passed, and until the rules or rule changes are challenged in a Federal court of law ( as was the rules for housebound and those with TDIU) there is little a veteran can do but appeal a claim and hope for the best. This program was also one of those programs that our “So Called” service organizations vowed would include all veterans of all eras eventually. Of course veteran like myself are still waiting.

Just so you know where I am coming from, I am one of those veterans who is rated 100%, with A&A, who has received the adaptive housing allowance, the automobile allowance, with adaptive equipment, and I am dependent on a caregiver for assistance. At one time I was rated 90% with TDIU, and over the years I have been rated so that I actually have more than one way to get to a 100% rating, which entitled me to a higher level of A&A.

I am also a chapter 61 retiree with over 15 years of active duty service, and at the time of retirement was serving on a 6 year reenlistment which would have carried me over 20 years. But because of medical problems beyond my control I was forced out of the Army at 32 years of age ( yea I entered the Army during the Vietnam years at 17 years old). Because of my forced early retirement, and because of the level of my disability I was denied my retirement pay. Fast forward to the creation of the Caregivers program, and again because of my years served I like many others have been denied entry into this program.

There are many more veterans denied this program based on the years they served than there are those who were allowed in the program. While I do not begrudge any veteran any benefit they have earned, I also believe no one group of veterans service is any greater than another group, with two exceptions, Purple Heart veterans and prisoner of war veterans.

Most veterans many not even know that there is a period of time ( early 1990’s) that some veterans with honorable service but who served less than their enlistment are denied any veteran benefits at all.

Eventually, Combat related special compensation (CRSC) was created (by the most liberal of Senators Harry Reid, )and it included all veterans regardless of the era served. So for the last 9 or 10 years I have received all of my retirement pay ( under the disguise of CRSC) together with my VA compensation. The primary reason this was created was because not all retirees were entitled to concurrent receipt.

Now back to the caregivers program. Congress had stated that after a period of time the laws would be changed to include all veterans of all eras, personally, I don’t think the law will change.

For those that were authorized the caregivers program good for you, for those that the VA is screwing with you need to get to federal court to get any real relief. AS for those of us that should have been entitled to the caregivers program but were excluded, all we can do is to continue to hope that the government finally realizes that all veteran should be treated the same regardless of the era they served.

Factually, my wife and children deal with my disability each and every day just like any other caregivers the only different is my wife left her job to care for me and is not compensated in any way, for those caregivers like Michelle who thinks caregivers deal with stress beyond comparison, that is true, but I wonder what makes your stress any different than my spouses stress, at least you get the extra compensation.

I will never understand why a TBI of the last 12 years carries more weight for benefits than a TBI of the Vietnam era , Korea war or any war before the present war.

Congress, and the Veterans Administrations pits veterans against veterans and this is partly why veterans will never be a reliable voting block for any one candidate.

Just my two cents……

Seymore Klearly
Seymore Klearly

Rick B.

Your statement “First I believe the VA has the authority to write their own rules and regulations, as do all executive level departments of the US Government.” is not correct.

It is Congress that has the authority to write the rules and regulations for the Department of Veterans Affairs. Also the rules and regs for all branches of our government.

The Rules and Regulations established by Congress are published in the Code of Federal Regulation.

A reference page with links to different aspects of parts of the code of federal regulations Title 38 can be found at: “http://www.benefits.va.gov/warms/topic-title38.asp”

That link is to primarily info on benefits federal regs for Veterans.

~

But regarding the Regulations and rules not associated with benefits many of those fall under the heading of Criminal codes. A good example of where the criminal codes apply are with the numerous current investigations by multiple federal agencies of Veterans Administrations employees for drug diversions. Pretty much a system wide level of problem at the VA. With the DOJ, FBI, DEA, and other agencies now investigating the system.

“Drugs vanish at some Veterans Affairs hospitals”, “Federal authorities are stepping up investigations”, Associated Press, Published on Feb. 20, 2017.

“http://www.toledoblade.com/Medical/2017/02/20/Drugs-vanish-at-some-Veterans-Affairs-hospitals.html”

Seymore Klearly
Seymore Klearly

VA John L. McClellan Memorial Veterans Hospital in Little Rock

“3 VA employees accused of stealing drugs from Little Rock hospital “, By Maggie McNeary, February 8, 2017
“http://www.arkansasonline.com/news/2017/feb/08/3-veterans-affairs-employees-accused-trying-steal-/”

“VA Employees Charged With Stealing Prescription Drugs To Sell On The Street”, Jonah Bennett, 02/09/2017
“http://dailycaller.com/2017/02/09/va-employees-charged-with-stealing-prescription-drugs-to-sell-on-the-street/”

Rick B
Rick B

The VA writes its own rules and regulations based on the laws that congress passed. Congress provides the basic guidelines, and tells the VA to write the rules and regulations. As an example, VA is in the process of rewriting Title 38 Code of Federal regulations and has been for some time. Congress does not have the time or personnel to write each and every federal rule or regulation, that responsibility is delegated to the Department that has control over a specific area.

Seymore Klearly
Seymore Klearly

Sorry Rick B. but you must be confusing VA Policy with rules and regs. While the VA may write it’s own policy it is not a rule or a regulation.

Lem
Lem

You are the one mixed up Seymore. As I stated above, the VA writes regulations supposedly based on U. S. Code. The regulations are regularly “re-interpretations” of U.S. Code when the Code is amended by a “Bill” of legislation. The re-written 38 CFR (Code of Federal Regulations) are then given blanket approval for the reinterpretation of Code and amended Code.

Rick B is absolutely right. Which law book have you studied. Nothing close to anything I’ve looked at.

Lem
Lem

As I said above, Seymore unKlearly, your “Civics” book was written to make a look nice presentation for junior high students. It is not at all how it works unless you call that “blanket approval” of re-written 38 CFR (an interpretation of law) actually a debated “legislative bill”.

namnibor
namnibor

I think what it is, is the VA has REDEFINED what a “policy, rule, or regulation is”, when it’s convenient for the VA.
The VA should not be allowed to make-up their own rules as they go along and those made-up rules can even vary from incompetent VA employee to another and also vary from one State’s VAMC to another State’s.

The HUGE problem at the VA is the lack of consistency and standardization throughout the VA System. Veterans are quite used to military structure and when we get out and eventually go to the VA we discover one chaotic system that seems to only follow given Policy and Rules when it only benefits the VA….again, the Veteran gets the short stick while that incompetent VA employee receives a Performance Bonus whether they do a shitty or fantastic job…DRAIN THIS SWAMP and AUDIT it three times.

Lem
Lem

How it is supposed to be done and how it is done are two different things Seymore, The Sec VA writes the regulations from U S Code passed by Congress. The regulations are then receive blanket approval by Congress. President Reagan did his “pen” changes to the travel regulations and other veteran entitlements through EOs to Sec VA. When the changed regulations were sent to congress they got that blanket approval with no changes in the actual U S Code which is changed through enactment of “Bills” which signed by POTUS become “law” or are actually printed in Sections of the U.S.C. But regulations are what are quoted by the VA and really have to be far afield before the court will step in and say “this has no relationship and actually re states U.S.C. because the changes by Regulations have been approved by Congress and signed by the President. So we have an awful lot of “laws” that have been rewritten by “regulations” with little debate and back door changes that leave “look nice laws” on the books but actual practice greatly afield of what the Public is told is being done.

Crazy elf
Crazy elf

@Rick B,
Another great group, hardly ever mentioned, is “The Medal of Honor Society”!
They help lots of “combat veterans” screwed over by VA.

Listen to Seymore. He’s great at digging up lots of articles concerning VA’s incompetent, and illegal, behavior.

Another article/video I’ve watched multiple times is Rep. Trey Gowdy’s speech to Congress. Where he says the truth about Obama’s willingness, albeit illegal, to write laws WITHOUT going through Congress! It’s about 10 minutes long. He holds nothing back on how Obama made Congress an “afterthought”! I said that correctly – Obama made CONGRESS AN AFTERTHOUGHT!
Yes, Congress holds the Purse strings. But, when there’s a President who’s willing to usurp his authority, the agencies below him are more willing to COMMIT criminal acts. Why? Because they know no one will hold them accountable!!!!!!!

Now, like you, I’m praying President Trump, Vice-President Pence and Congress puts the screws to VA. Just as VA has put the screws to veterans!

Rita
Rita

What about writing a petition to Senator Bernie Sanders explains what is going on?

Crazy elf
Crazy elf

@Rita,
You mean the “Socialist/Democrat” who was “paid off” by the Clinton Crime Family? He received a “Mansion”, “Private Jet” and lots of “money” to go away during the campaign.
That’s not conjecture, it’s fact!
His wife still is being investigated for her crap she pulled with a university.
Lots of money missing there!

He doesn’t give a rats ass about veterans! As Democrats, and some Republicans, don’t give a rats ass about veterans!

Laura Isbell
Laura Isbell

We were told my husband is doing much better even though within that year the VA did little to nothing to help him with his PTSD. We went from a score of 21 down to a 13 yet she says he’s suicidal. He’s never been labeled suicidal before. How is that him doing better??? I’d love to know.

1xgijane
1xgijane

Northern CA had hours dropped dramatically, so I went from 12 to 4 weekly. The registry doesn’t have enough caregivers, so I haven’t had one in a month. Our Patient Advocate was buried in sooo many complaints. Vets were being told that they should get A&A, but as we all know that takes forever to receive. I was even sent paperwork on going into a care facility, rather than them giving me my hours back. The registry underpays the caregivers, so the turnover is ridiculous. Sending a family member in this week to be hired and assigned to me.

Donna D
Donna D

My husband is 100% disabled also found unemployable at the same time from environmental exposures during deployment. His lungs are at 37% function with high steroids. I’m finally going to get him with the VA for the Burn pit registry evaluation, but what will it do for him. He’s so angry every time he learns he has another medical problem on top of all the others and this med costs this or that. If the VA can’t help him for the main problems, I know it will make him sad again. (They do help him for the eyes and teeth problems that have come about, due to his main problem.). I’ve had him at civilian doctors, because without lungs, he can’t breathe and he couldn’t wait for 30 days much less any longer for an appointment. I haven’t tried the VA Caregiver Program, since it seems focused on physical, visible injuries and not on internal injuries, which the VA might define as an illness. Yes, it makes him ill, but he wouldn’t be ill, if he had not had his lungs injured by war time deployment exposures.

Crazy elf
Crazy elf

This occurred on Friday 17 Feb. 2017 in front of the Oversight Committee.
From;
“End Times Prophecy News”
via: Conservative daily post & the
Daily Caller.
Titled:

“VA Officials Get Exposed in Hearing, Evidence Now Shows 0 Work Hours Spent On Veterans!”

It’s the third “story” in the video.
How’s that for “liberal corruption”!

Tristi
Tristi

Being the wife/caregiver of a combat wounded veteran who has PTSD, to many injuries to count/list, is listed at 100% Total and Permanent and unable to work, the VA dropped us 3yrs ago from the program abruptly basically saying his PTSD and other injuries were not “bad enough” to qualify him for the program.
We just retried to re-enroll, they declined us again only looking at his 2017 file rather than his entire medical history from where he was wounded in 2005.
Yet we have caregivers in the area I live at who are getting compensation for their disabled husbands who are able to work, go to college and lead normal lives. One of the caregivers I know is even a newly appointed Dole Fellowship Caregiver. Her husband goes to college part time and works from home when he’s not at school.
So how is this right ? They get the lap of luxuries, free home, they both work, both go to all kinds of places around the world, and she gets paid by the VA to take care of her husband!
Meanwhile I have to work 2 jobs just to pay bills, make my veteran wait on appointments to get seen around my work schedule and close to losing our home for the 3 time in 2 years.
The other wife’s husband was a Captain, and mine was a Staff Sgt.
This system is corrupt the wealthy are seeming to get the benefits, while the underclass get screwed.

K.N.
K.N.

I agree, I’ve known other caregivers who have not been tossed off the program. Most are married to veterans who were officers or POGs. Then the guys like my husband who were in heavy combat.. who have severe PTSD.. are kicked off. How does that make any sense?

91Veteran
91Veteran

This makes me wonder if they know someone within the system. Sheesh this is disgraceful.

T-Bird
T-Bird

I hear you loud and clear sister. I would like to thank you for your services as a wife and caregiver. Doing the job that you do,without the supportive services that you and your husband have earned is one of the most difficult jobs ever. You do it because you are a woman of honor and integrity. We have been on the verge of homelessness for the past few months and it is a horrible feeling. The system is set up so that the vets don’t qualify for any housing assistance unless you can provide proof that you homeless. I asked how one would do that and the answer was get a receipt from the shelter. I have contacted countless numbers of organizations that claim to help the veteran and it is just a sea of goodwill. Very very few can assist. And when they do it is extremely limited and some require repayment. Keep on keeping on! You do know that if your finances meet the guideline that your husband and the entire family are eligible for State Medicaid? Check it out the coverage isn’t bad and the amount of hair that you as a caregiver losses every time you are force to step foot into the VA will decrease substantially.

Crazy elf
Crazy elf

@Rick B,
You may want to check out your “Civics” manual.
Only Congress can pass laws! No “If, ands or buts” about it! Then the President can, either sign what Congress passed into law, or veto it!

Congress, as I posted earlier, and Rep. Trey Gowdy so eloquently stated in front of Congress, is NOT AN AFTERTHOUGHT!
The VA has absolutely NO AUTHORITY TO PASS OR WRITE LAWS!

I’m not trying to be rude, OK! I learned that while I was in Junior High! The laws haven’t changed!

Crazy elf
Crazy elf

@Rick B,
As Seymore says, the VA may be able to write “policy”. Yet, no policy can violate laws passed by Congress.
Laws are laws! Violate the law, see what happens to anyone!

rick b
rick b

OK so did I break some rule, because all of a sudden my comments are being moderated, and deleted?

Crazy elf
Crazy elf

Rick B,
Here’s two statements made by:
1.) Gibson
He said, paraphrasing, he was “redefining” the word “accountability”! Evidently, his definition didn’t sit well with what’s in “Webster’s Dictionary”! Wouldn’t you want someone held accountable for killing someone? As was the case over that “wait time scandal”. Which is still occurring today.
Or, how about the VHA employee who beat a 71 year old veteran to DEATH in Louisiana a few years ago- and has yet to be tried!!!!
There’s other egregious acts I could mention. Yet, it would make my comment VERY long!

Next:
2.) “McDipshit McDonald”
Remember when he told the Congressional Committee, quote; “You can’t fire your way to excellence!”

What kind of firing would be acceptable? Wouldn’t anyone running an agency want great employees, instead of persons running around killing people?
Ref: #1.)

So, you see Rick, “policy” can never over-ride laws!
We “…are a nation of laws…” as Rep. Trey Gowdy said in his Congressional Address in 2015! Once “…the blindfold comes off…” it will never be the same!
That’s why I, and others on here, want – NO WE DEMAND – VA follow the laws set down by Congress!
To HELL with what VA wants. Their “policies be damned!”

namnibor
namnibor

@Crazy elf — Right-on! If the VA had it entirely their way, the VA would have a system wide “POLICY” of Dr. Houlihan Candyman, Tomah Drug Cocktails for all Vets to keep them deathly sedated while they continue to collect compensation benefits on a liquefying corpse. THAT is how VA “Policy” has completely bastardized the system…and the AFGE union types surely add to the “Policy of Untruths” the VA has embarked upon with it’s iceberg date cruise on the V.A. Titanic.

Also, never mind fact the VA conveniently ignores it’s OWN “POLICY” when it benefits the VA but invents new types of f^ckery and call it POLICY, like randomly removing a Vet’s meds without notification, or the VA invested a new POLICY of their FORM of notification is the Vet simply no longer receiving medications in mail…ooopsy!
(in VA “policy-speak”, an “ooopsy” is also policy notification that we MAY have just infected you with an infectious agent…ooopsy)

ANutterVet
ANutterVet

@rick b, @Crazy elf, @Namnibor, @cj, @Ex va, @Seymore Klearly [glad to see you’re back] –

@Ben, my wife and I would to express our deepest sympathy to you and your family for the loss of your loved one, and one of ours. Ben, may you be blessed with prospering in the area of kicking down the doors of the VA, to open them up so that they’ll all be exposed of their greedy and corruptive actions and behaviors.

@rick b- You’d think with all of the reputable reporting pertaining to the scandalous actions and behavior of VA employees, that the leadership of the VA would agree to have the agency properly investigated to validate the accountability of its money, service, and policy trails [not trials, which would come at a later date].

The VA leadership doesn’t want an investigation, because they already know that the findings will lead to reorganizing and reforming the VA [therefore, no more perky bonuses]. If they had nothing to be concerned or worried about, the VA leadership would gladly agree to having the VA investigated.

It’s only going to be a matter of time, before all hell breaks out. These crooks are NOT going to have the last laugh, NOR collect a dam bonus for underperforming [yes, I said underperforming].

namnibor
namnibor

NPB– Non-Performance-Bonuses at the VA. VA interprets it as No Peanut Butter. Becomes policy, no more peanut butter, but more bonuses with the $$$ saved on peanut butter. Policy creation in action at the VA. Just follow the very quick ratty hand’s to the cookie jar.
Same with VA Caregivers having assistance lowered or dropped entirely, I am betting someone is making $$$ off of this somehow at the VA or a relative of a contracting company related to home medical equipment or something.
Nepotism is the glue that keeps the cellulite bouncing at the VA. The cellulite is ALWAYS bouncing at the VA. 🙂

ANutterVet
ANutterVet

@Namnibor – Is the VA’s peanut butter the chunky or smooth type? I think both kinds could be applied.

namnibor
namnibor

The VA’s form of peanut butter strangely has corn mixed into it. 🙂

Crazy elf
Crazy elf

@namnibor,
We mustn’t forget the “DEAD VETERAN” who laid in a shower, (Tampa Florida VHA), for over 9 hours. The staff then tried to cover up their misdeed.
I think they were using “policy” to wait and see what would happen to the body. Like that dead veteran who had maggots on his body. Remember that one?! The maggots were not what killed him, it was something else. The maggots were on him BEFORE he died!
I wonder what “policy” VHA employees were followed on that FUBAR?
Or, what “policy” allows VA to hire rapists, sexual predators, murderers and other deviants!?!?!
Or, what “policy” allows VA to spend taxpayers monies on items not approved by Congress. What “policy” allowed VA to use “Choice Program” monies for refugees or illegal immigrants (Obama’s little FUCK-UP!)!
There’s so much more I could post over VA’s “policies” not following the laws set down by Congress, it’s pathetic!

Lem
Lem

Rick, you added a link without putting it in quotes: “_____” Which puts it automatically in moderation and then it never appears.

Rick b
Rick b

Lem

thanks I didn’t know that….

Crazy elf
Crazy elf

Remember how the committee member told “SHITHEAD SHULKIN” he didn’t want to see anymore bad VA press coming out!
Well, looks like he’s not getting his wish.

Today, 20 Feb. 2017,
from;
“End Times Prophecy News”
via: “red state watcher” &
“CBS News” is a real bad news story concerning drugs, more specifically opiates, being – either used by VA employees or sold by VA employees!
Titled;

It’s Happening Look What The Feds Are Doing To The VA!”

It’s the forth article in the video. About at the 5:30 min. mark. Total time is 6:03 min. long!

namnibor
namnibor

@Crazy elf and All: Here’s a direct link to the CBS news written story on the missing opiates in the VA system…does not sound like an isolated case, as in it’s a system-wide problem…a continuation of Tomah, Candyman Culture apparently.

“http://www.cbsnews.com/news/drugs-vanish-at-some-va-hospitals/”

Crazy elf
Crazy elf

Hey, namnibor,
I wonder how busy that “$25 million dollar per year Public Relations Firm” is going to be in the near future!
You know the one I’m talking about, the Public Relations Firm that attempts to “cover up” all the illegal acts committed by VA!
I gotta sneaking suspicion they’re gonna be working lots of overtime.
I wonder if they’ll ask VA for more taxpayers money?

LaTisha Clark
LaTisha Clark

I lost my caregiver pay back in may. With some BS excuse. If you want my story please feel free email me. My husband has PTSD and it has done nothing but get worse over the years. I cant work due to someone needing to be home with him. We have 4 kids to think about but now since loosing the pay we have had to file bankruptcy. All im saying its a lot. There are organizations out there that help us but they cant help us forever. If your serious about wanting to do further investigation into the matter please email me.

K.N.
K.N.

I am the wife of a 100% totally and permanently disabled combat veteran. My husband was medically retired after serving in the Army for nearly 15 years. Deployed several times to Afghanistan and Iraq. He was injured in combat, physically and psychologically. We applied and were accepted to the VA Caregiver Program when it was first started, then a little after a year on the program we moved, which prompted a review of our Caregiver status. We were released from the program with no real explanation as to why, other than my husband no longer needed caregiver services according to their assessment. We immediately appealed the decision and were again denied. Frustrated, we gave up.

My understanding is that the program didn’t expect to have so many eligible caregivers, and the program was grossly underfunded. The VA employees in charge of the program at the regional/state level were given very rigid criteria for who qualifies for the program. Unless the veteran needs physical assistance with activities of daily living (e.g. eating, bathing, dressing) the caregiver will not qualify. While I agree there needs to be support for those families, this perspective completely ignores the invisible disabilities that many veterans suffer with. However, the only way this program will get unfucked is with more/better federal funding.

namnibor
namnibor

The VA does not have a *lack of $ problem* at all. It’s a lack of proper accounting and that damn thing called accountability.
Instead of $$ being spent to help “invisible wounds”, the VA will gladly spend millions on color changing walls in a vastly over-budgeted construction project or lest we forget about vast sums spent on interior decorators so the VA would know just *where* to place the million $ rock called a sculpture…while Veteran Caregivers are trying to keep afloat, literally, in the volumes of bullshit the VA pumps-out instead of simply doing the right thing by Veterans and their Caregivers and Survivors.

The VA would LOVE for ALL to think they have a lack of $$$ problem, but it’s the exact opposite. Throwing more $$$ on this turd will only add more chocolate to it’s candy shell…still a turd inside.

K.N.
K.N.

@namnibor – Are you a veteran or work at the VA? I guess what I’m asking is, where are you getting your information? While the VA may be mismanaging programs, I also think it’s a funding issue. You have to consider the surge of veterans needing services since 9/11..

ANutterVet
ANutterVet

@K.N. – The VA has been appropriated approximately $175 Billion for fiscal year 2017. The year before, 2016, was about 8% less. I doubt that there is a funding issue with the VA, and that there is more of a circle jerking issue [put you here, then there, tell you this, then that], and-or non-performance bonuses, pilfering [5 finga regular or digital discount of unaccountable monetary funds], or some sort of monies allocated to VA employees that is questionable and illegal.

The VA is one big money pit, which has a tempting smell that draws the attention of those union fellows, due to the fact that the VA hasn’t had a thorough audit in years [all facilities and treatment clinics].

Ex va
Ex va

I worked at the va and have some knowledge of the funding of special program dollars. Those specific dollars to fund the programs end up mismanaged, whitewashed, thrown with other programs or projects. They are not protected because the va just sees it as money they can mismanage and do what they want to do with it.

Some of these monies are specifically allocated by congress and when it get to the medical center some of it will be used on the special programs, but then it is converted to regular medical center to use whatever they want it to be used for. They will blame Veterans somehow for the money they mismanaged. Because they run out of the funding. Washington crunches the funding and allocates per number of Veterans they anticipate will use program usually thru the medical center that the Veteran they are attached to. The patterns of mismanaged funding happens in many va medical centers because their is no accountability attached with the monies given out from Washington. No auditing on how this money was spent.

I was in a specialty clinic and we had to move our clinic two times in three years. The new clinic that was built with special funding was given to another clinic in less than a year. If you see clinics moving around a lot in medical centers this is the reason for this. The convert special funding to regular medical center use.

namnibor
namnibor

@K.N.– I am just a 100% Disabled Svc. Connected Veteran that’s lost about all my Veteran friends in past 6 or 7 years directly due to the VA’s negligence and also Veteran Suicides.
I will not rest until the VA becomes a safe place for Veterans or I die, whichever comes first, however I will not give the VA the pleasure of killing me so I use Medicare until a future date in which I can safely use the VA without fear of being killed.

Ex va
Ex va

@ namnibor, sorry to hear the loss of your fellow Veteran friends. I believe you are correct that it is negligence due to va’s lack of care. I do not trust the va with the care of anyone. It is too dangerous to a Veterans health. I believe that their position of cutting off pain medications to Veterans is a cruel way to retaliate against Veterans who are suffering in chronic pain.

Kristen
Kristen

Thanks for shedding light on this! My husband was one of the vets from Prescott removed. They have no problem sending these men to war; but then many like my husband get letters wanting their sign on bonus back, put them through hell to get help. They don’t care my husband can barely function without help. After 4 deployments he suffers every day with civilian life.

Happy Scorpion
Happy Scorpion

OFF TOPIC – VET’s Wife Needs Help – VA has encouraged my husband to file for a pension instead of his PTSD disability claim. We are just exhausted with the VA’s circle jerking and side tracking with other stone-walling tactics regarding his urgent health care. Any, guidance of the pros and cons of filing either would be appreciated…..on line now.

namnibor
namnibor

@Happy Scorpion– Highly recommend doing searches over at another great Veteran site, in which you can search by various topics and health conditions, read what other Veterans have succeeded and failed at and corrective actions taken instead and more over at HADIT DOT COM. I learned everything I needed years ago to file my own VA Svc. Connected Claim and SSDI Claim, and both successfully, from that website. Hope that helps as far as a vast resource of info. All I have on that…but also over there you can view the exact regulations and such governing Pensions and Title 38 stuff.

K.N.
K.N.

What is your husband’s military status (retired, active, reserves, discharged)? Also, does he already have a disability rating at the VA? I’m asking because it seems odd that the VA would say “apply” for a pension vs disability, they are totally different. I know ALL the information can be so confusing, and the process is a bureaucratic nightmare!

Crazy elf
Crazy elf

Hey, namnibor,
I googled “drugs vanish at some VA hospitals”!
What I read was an article from “The Associated Press”, posted about 3 to 4 hours ago.
In the article, it’s explained, in no uncertain terms, this is a systemic problem throughout VA’s nationwide. The worst one violating “policy”/law was the one in Washington DC.
Now, that’s not saying the other VHA’s aren’t in deep shit trouble, they are!
I’d love to be a “fly on the wall” when the FBI and DEA come knocking on their front doors!
That would be HIL-FUCKING-LARIOUS!

namnibor
namnibor

While in constant video feed contact with U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions who’ll be in an unmarked helicopter. 🙂
Why do I say this?

I am HOPING the VA’s across America are now going to have unannounced inspections and investigations, besides VA OIG…let’s pray these investigations will cause a self-cleaning effect of rats jumping ship to another host.
Maybe we need exterminators for all these pests? 🙂

Happy Scorpion
Happy Scorpion

@Namnibor – Appreciate your direction – Namnibor – also coming from a Court background specifically Investigative Services Office; I found a site to assist in my filing case. United States Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims – “https://www.uscourts.cavc.gov/” I pray this site will assist Older VETS who have served in Korean, Vietnam, etc.

@K.N. -My husband is honorably discharged and does not have a rating at this time. Yes, it does sound confusing especially since they said “husband should file for Pension first to receive monies for him quicker.” But, I don’t want to file in error for either [Pension and/or Disability]. I need a quicker solution; because, time is running out for us.

K.N.
K.N.

@Happy Scorpion – If your husband has already been honorably discharged, I don’t think he’s eligible to file for retirement/pension. My husband was medically retired with nearly 15 years of service, it took years to get through the retirement process.. And retirement is processed through the veterans branch of service (so Army for my husband) not the VA. So I’m not sure why they would suggest this as the appropriate, or even quicker process for your husband. Likely they are not familiar with the process.. lol.. not surprised! ?

My suggestion would be to get your husband started on the VA rating process so he can start receiving medical care as soon as possible. If you don’t mind me asking, what State do you live in? I might have some resources for you and your husband.

Lem
Lem

Happy, The veteran’s pension is like a welfare check but a little more than an SSI welfare check and easier to get. Not much. But it will put your husband in full VA care with no co payments. Also eligible for home hospice if that is where you are headed. Contact a social worker at the VA hospital nearest you to start.

You can file for both the Pension and Disability compensation at the same time. If a disability rating is less than the Pension check you’ll only get the Pension check. But if the service connected Disability Compensation is more then that is all he gets but that would also put him in full VA Health Care without copays.