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Hekk
Oct 12, 2012

'smeper fi


Howard Phillips posted:

I'm on ebenefits trying to apply for a DAV representative... but there are literally dozens choices them at my local DAV. All same address but with different phone numbers.

Which one do I pick?

COVID messed up in person stuff a lot. Here in San Diego, I just called their branch number and a woman there took a bunch of info from me and assigned me a case worker on Camp Pendleton. He called me the next day and I started the process of sending all my medical records over to him.

Were I in your shoes, I'd just call one of the numbers listed and explain that you have no idea how this works but want to use their services.

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Howard Phillips
May 4, 2008

His smile; it shines in the darkest of depths. There is hope yet.

CRUSTY MINGE posted:

Call their office and they'll likely assign you someone. Tell the person they assign you to what stage you're at, and that you'll be putting them down as your rep.

I would call first just to make sure they're not caught off guard when papers with your name and one of theirs turns up on their desk next week. Also so they don't assign you to someone out sick or on vacation.

You don't have to do this and can just pick a name, but a little forethought goes a long way, and a heads up wouldn't hurt for the reps.

Okay thank you.

Nick Soapdish
Apr 27, 2008




https://twitter.com/iava/status/1348434454130298880?s=20

Just spent 10 minutes changing my password and then reestablishing 2FA as I got a new phone so that I could fillout a form that who knows how it may help

Flying_Crab
Apr 12, 2002





I've seen some anecdotal reports of some VAs already vaccinating any vet enrolled in VA healthcare, so maybe they're moving through staff & vulnerable populations fairly quickly?

not caring here
Feb 22, 2012

blazemastah 2 dry 4 u

Flying_Crab posted:

I've seen some anecdotal reports of some VAs already vaccinating any vet enrolled in VA healthcare, so maybe they're moving through staff & vulnerable populations fairly quickly?

I had my yearly just before new years, and yeah, the plan for the VA was front liners, and the nursing homes. She said that they are having basically 3 categories, high risk, medium and low. Front liners and hospice care, the really fuckin' old, and really old + condition that's susceptible to COVID.

Lucky me I'm medium risk so I guess I'm after that.

But poo poo changes and your local availability could be wildly different. I'm in a very old population area so I doubt they'll be getting to the lower risk groups ahead of schedule.

Flying_Crab
Apr 12, 2002





Yeah I live in a large urban area that isn't a retirement destination nor anywhere near a big military community, so here's to hoping lower risk groups start getting jabbed here pretty soon.

Sarah
Apr 4, 2005

I'm watching you.

Flying_Crab posted:

I've seen some anecdotal reports of some VAs already vaccinating any vet enrolled in VA healthcare, so maybe they're moving through staff & vulnerable populations fairly quickly?

We are doing approximately 60 veterans a day, I will ask someone tomorrow (if I remember) how far along we are in the order.

berzerkmonkey
Jul 23, 2003


I've got a physical exam through a third party this weekend for knees and feet (not sure why they didn't include back and neck in there since I claimed them all at the same time...) Anything I should know before going in to the appointment?

CRUSTY MINGE
Mar 30, 2011
Chelsea Manning is a goddamned HERO


Knees and feet are different doctor than neck and back, different specialists. Your limbs will be rated separately from your neck and back, so you will have separate ratings and then get to learn VA math.

If they're worth their salt, they'll spend time going over your records with you. Don't downplay the problems in casual conversation. I was re-evaluated last year for my leg and back problems by the same doctor, but my leg problem stems from sciatic nerve poo poo in my back, so it's still in the wheelhouse. My knees are still mostly fine, so I didn't need a joint specialist.

Also they want to bill you out to two specialists, like any good american 3rd party. But that means you'll likely see someone much better educated on the knees and ankles than someone doing a cover all appointment. Likely doesn't mean certainly though.

berzerkmonkey
Jul 23, 2003


I went to my appointment this weekend, and the person I saw was really flummoxed as to why my back wasn't included - she said it was likely that someone at the VA didn't put in the code. I emailed DAV and got back a terse response of "They are required to request exams for all conditions claimed. If they donít see evidence in your service treatment records, they donít request exams. Please check back for status in 60 days." (I don't think I've had a cordial conversation with anyone at DVA yet...)

I do have record of a back injury in my medical file though, granted it was only one instance (I think that's when I blew out a disc, however) - should I just wait and see what happens, or try to talk to someone who will actually check on this?

UP THE BUM NO BABY
Sep 1, 2011

Man-oh-man, Cowboy looks like a bag of leftovers from a V.F.W. barbecue. Of
course, I've got nothing against dead people. Why, some of my best friends are dead

Talk to someone, make sure it gets checked

berzerkmonkey
Jul 23, 2003


UP THE BUM NO BABY posted:

Talk to someone, make sure it gets checked

Yeah, I replied to the DAV guy, so hopefully I get a(ny) response. Like I said, they're not the most communicative of people, but I really don't know who else I could talk to.

CRUSTY MINGE
Mar 30, 2011
Chelsea Manning is a goddamned HERO


If you have copies of the record at home, send the DAV a copy of yours. Hopefully you took over a copy machine with your medical file sometime during outprocessing. It's not exactly uncommon for records maintained by the VA to be incomplete. Some of my deployment records are completely in the wind and that's really goddamn annoying.

They're pretty constantly busy at the DAV, at least around here. They're good people, not immune to the occasional mistake though.

On the plus side, when they correct the mistake, you'll collect backpay. It might only be for 10% (I wouldn't expect more than that honestly), but it will catch up to you. My back, at discharge was 3 torn and herniated discs, stenosis, sacroilliitis, and degenerative disc disease. I got a 10% rating for it, after the sciatic nerve problems developed, they bumped it to 20%. But every little bit helps, so definitely chase it.

berzerkmonkey
Jul 23, 2003


I know they are busy - I was just being salty. If I had to deal with an entire region full of old folks bitching about their ailments, I'd probably be rather short and to the point as well.

He did respond back and said that he didn't see the section in my record, so I just sent the specific page to him. I know now that I should have filed immediately after getting out, but back then I was like "Oh, there are people who are way more in need than I am. I'll get by..." I know now that was a mistake (though being able to submit online wasn't an option at the time either.)

And hell yeah - I made hard copies in triplicate of both medical and service records, and have since scanned them, just to be safe. Even back then I knew that I should have copies of all this stuff.

CRUSTY MINGE
Mar 30, 2011
Chelsea Manning is a goddamned HERO


Yeah, getting poo poo done at discharge is the best way to do it. Anyone still on active getting ready to clear out, go talk to the DAV or VFW rep for the clearing checklist first and get them to start your claim asap. I did that, first full month out I had a $107 check (10% at the time) in my bank.

Totally understand the salt, being a salty rear end in a top hat is just part of the game and part time hobby of mine (obviously, I post here).

At least it's not the dark ages of Bush and before, where it could be years before hearing back about claims.

cult_hero
Jul 10, 2001


berzerkmonkey posted:

I went to my appointment this weekend, and the person I saw was really flummoxed as to why my back wasn't included - she said it was likely that someone at the VA didn't put in the code. I emailed DAV and got back a terse response of "They are required to request exams for all conditions claimed. If they donít see evidence in your service treatment records, they donít request exams. Please check back for status in 60 days." (I don't think I've had a cordial conversation with anyone at DVA yet...)

I do have record of a back injury in my medical file though, granted it was only one instance (I think that's when I blew out a disc, however) - should I just wait and see what happens, or try to talk to someone who will actually check on this?

The standard for getting an exam is to have a current disability potentially related to an event in service. So while you may have had treatment during service, without evidence of a current disability, they won't get an exam. If you don't have any current treatment for a back condition, write a brief statement stating that you have continued to experience back pain since service and an examination will be ordered.

Virginia Slams
Nov 17, 2012




berzerkmonkey posted:

I know they are busy - I was just being salty. If I had to deal with an entire region full of old folks bitching about their ailments, I'd probably be rather short and to the point as well.

He did respond back and said that he didn't see the section in my record, so I just sent the specific page to him. I know now that I should have filed immediately after getting out, but back then I was like "Oh, there are people who are way more in need than I am. I'll get by..." I know now that was a mistake (though being able to submit online wasn't an option at the time either.)

And hell yeah - I made hard copies in triplicate of both medical and service records, and have since scanned them, just to be safe. Even back then I knew that I should have copies of all this stuff.

I just wanted to highlight this specific portion of what you said because it stuck out to me. I have known many people who felt the same and even I felt the same at my time of filing. I felt guilty like my issues weren't significant enough and that there are people way worse off who need it more. But as time passed and I waited for my rating decision I had time to reflect on my claims and how significantly it was effecting my daily life in big ways and small.

It's not an unreasonable way to feel but it's wrong, there is enough room at the VA for care(in most places, if you qualify) and any disability compensation you get doesn't effect anyone else's ability to receive compensation or care, the funding while not literally infinite, essentially for all practical purposes is infinite.

I don't mean this as an attack on you but more for anyone who sees this maybe it can help them put it in perspective and motivate them to seek the compensation they need.

berzerkmonkey
Jul 23, 2003


cult_hero posted:

The standard for getting an exam is to have a current disability potentially related to an event in service. So while you may have had treatment during service, without evidence of a current disability, they won't get an exam. If you don't have any current treatment for a back condition, write a brief statement stating that you have continued to experience back pain since service and an examination will be ordered.

Just an update on this - the page was "upside down" so it was overlooked when the appointment was made.

Anyhoo, I went for my appointment on a Saturday, when there was no x-ray tech on duty, of course. Had to go back this past week to get those done. The back appointment is tomorrow.


Virginia Slams posted:

I don't mean this as an attack on you but more for anyone who sees this maybe it can help them put it in perspective and motivate them to seek the compensation they need.

And not taken as such. Definitely true, folks - apply sooner, rather than later. I will offer this as well: they're gonna ask you to describe your condition. At this point, I'm pretty dosed on ibuprofen, and aches and pains are pretty much a constant feature, so it's kind of difficult to describe these things. Try to be cognizant of your pains and when they occur, write them down immediately to accurately describe what is going on with you. Had I really thought about what I should be expecting, I would have been keeping copious notes.

As an aside, I had to get oral surgery about a year ago now, and had to take some pretty heavy anti-inflammatory drugs the night before. That next morning, I woke up and remembered what it was like to actually be ache and pain free - it's weird how when this stuff becomes a constant how you learn to live with it.

UP THE BUM NO BABY
Sep 1, 2011

Man-oh-man, Cowboy looks like a bag of leftovers from a V.F.W. barbecue. Of
course, I've got nothing against dead people. Why, some of my best friends are dead

berzerkmonkey posted:

it's weird how when this stuff becomes a constant how you learn to live with it.

Yes it is

McNally
Sep 12, 2007

Ask me about Proposition 305


Do you like muskets?


Welp, fingers crossed. I got accepted to grad school, now I'm gonna try to get voc rehab to pay for it.

DaNerd
Sep 15, 2009

u br?


McNally posted:

Welp, fingers crossed. I got accepted to grad school, now I'm gonna try to get voc rehab to pay for it.

They shot me down because I had a bachelor's already but I'm rooting for you!

Nick Soapdish
Apr 27, 2008




McNally posted:

Welp, fingers crossed. I got accepted to grad school, now I'm gonna try to get voc rehab to pay for it.

Congrats on getting accepted to grad school and good luck with getting the VA to pay for it

Booger Presley
Aug 6, 2008



Pillbug

McNally posted:

Welp, fingers crossed. I got accepted to grad school, now I'm gonna try to get voc rehab to pay for it.

Outstanding! From finger guns to Doctor guns. Whatever, I am happy for you and your accomplishments.

TheWeedNumber
Apr 20, 2020


McNally posted:

Welp, fingers crossed. I got accepted to grad school, now I'm gonna try to get voc rehab to pay for it.

Let me know if you need some intel on that poo poo. Get ready for a firefight with Voc Rehab though, just incase

Fart Sandwiches
Apr 3, 2006



So I have a 70% rating, and finally got them to recognize my tinnitus at 10%, but they didn't bump me to 80. Is that just how it is? You can only be 70 or 100, no in between with rounding down?

Nostalgia4Dogges
Jun 18, 2004

Only emojis can express my pure, simple stupidity.



I forgot the convoluted math/algorithm they use, iirc you get the flat % for each rating up to a certain amount (50%?), then after that, itís lowered for some reason?

PageMaster
Nov 4, 2009


Fart Sandwiches posted:

So I have a 70% rating, and finally got them to recognize my tinnitus at 10%, but they didn't bump me to 80. Is that just how it is? You can only be 70 or 100, no in between with rounding down?

The new rating percents are only applied to the remaining amount to 100, if that makes sense. So if you were already at 70, any new percentages are only applied to the remaining 30 percent possible; basically your 10 percent rating gets you an extra 3 percent total (10 percent of 30 percent), so your new total would have been 73 percent (which is rounded).

PageMaster fucked around with this message at 17:58 on Feb 26, 2021

UP THE BUM NO BABY
Sep 1, 2011

Man-oh-man, Cowboy looks like a bag of leftovers from a V.F.W. barbecue. Of
course, I've got nothing against dead people. Why, some of my best friends are dead

PageMaster posted:

The extra percents are only percents of the remaining amount to 100, if that makes sense. So if you were already at 70, any new percentages are only applied to the remaining 30 percent possible; basically your 10 percent rating gets you an extra 3 percent total (10 percent of 30 percent), so your new total would have been 73 percent (which is rounded).

It's this

Fart Sandwiches
Apr 3, 2006



PageMaster posted:

The extra percents are only percents of the remaining amount to 100, if that makes sense. So if you were already at 70, any new percentages are only applied to the remaining 30 percent possible; basically your 10 percent rating gets you an extra 3 percent total (10 percent of 30 percent), so your new total would have been 73 percent (which is rounded).

wow lmao

Nostalgia4Dogges
Jun 18, 2004

Only emojis can express my pure, simple stupidity.



ok gimme a sec Iím still re-reading it and trying to make sense 😅

Mr. Nice!
Oct 13, 2005



Fart Sandwiches posted:

So I have a 70% rating, and finally got them to recognize my tinnitus at 10%, but they didn't bump me to 80. Is that just how it is? You can only be 70 or 100, no in between with rounding down?

Here's a calculator that explains it: https://www.hillandponton.com/va-disability-calculator/

The tl:dr; is that it isn't calculated by just adding disability percentages up. It's also basically broken down in 10% increments. If you're rated 64%, you're paid at 60%. If you're rated 65%, you're paid at 70%.

McNally
Sep 12, 2007

Ask me about Proposition 305


Do you like muskets?


VA has a chart available showing their bullshit numbers.

https://www.benefits.va.gov/compensation/rates-index.asp

To start you have to know that in VA math, 10+10=19

They do round up, though, so if you're at 65% or better they'll pay you at 70%

I have three 10% ratings so even though my individual rating is 27% they pay me for 30%

rifles
Oct 8, 2007
is this thing working

I posted two years ago about getting my dad into the system to get another 10% to offset his retirement and get both his disability and retirement payments. Long story short, DAV ghosted him after getting power of attorney (only POC was a full voice mail machine) and every other VSO he tried did similarly, basically stopping contact after very little time.

So we got his records and did it ourselves. It's being processed now. The VA just sent a letter stating he was denied for degenerative disc disease in 2019, despite never having filed, knowing that anything had been filed, or having an opportunity to provide documentation. So they're looking for who actually did that, after talking on the phone they weren't able to find a digital record of that request or denial ever happening. I'm hoping it somehow works out to give him a further backdating for the current claims, which includes fun things like opioid dependence, every limb on his body, two rotator cuffs, etc with every hospital/doctor record dating he's ever had. We sent his records on a DVD, two pdf files to the tune of 2500 pages of records a piece.

gently caress the VA though.

Fart Sandwiches
Apr 3, 2006



I'm now in my local VA system and should be getting a call soon to schedule my first appt.

Now my real question: is it possible to reduce my coverage with my work to just my wife and kid and keep va for myself? I realize every company is different but before I go spinning my wheels I'd like to know if it's worth pursuing or even possible. I pay ~900/mo in coverage and obviously want to keep my family covered but I'd definitely like to reduce that cost somehow.

Howard Phillips
May 4, 2008

His smile; it shines in the darkest of depths. There is hope yet.

Fart Sandwiches posted:

I'm now in my local VA system and should be getting a call soon to schedule my first appt.

Now my real question: is it possible to reduce my coverage with my work to just my wife and kid and keep va for myself? I realize every company is different but before I go spinning my wheels I'd like to know if it's worth pursuing or even possible. I pay ~900/mo in coverage and obviously want to keep my family covered but I'd definitely like to reduce that cost somehow.

Doubtful with the way companies negotiate plan policy and rates but doesn't hurt to ask or take a look at the options to see if there is something that is cheaper for you but retains some coverage for your family.

CRUSTY MINGE
Mar 30, 2011
Chelsea Manning is a goddamned HERO


Keep in mind that your VA coverage is relative to your rating and you won't be covered for some stuff unless you have a high enough rating. You may just want to keep your insurance if your rating isn't high enough to warrant mostly full coverage. Even then, poo poo like dental, you need to be 90-100% rating to get, or they'll dock it from your disability payment.

Granted, that doesn't always mean they're going to bill you, or turn you down. My brother doesn't have a rating and makes loving peanuts, still uses the VA and they negotiate what he pays for his meds and visits to basically nothing because they sat down and discussed his finances and expenses with him to figure out what he can afford. That seems very hit/miss and would depend on your patients advocate and whoever handles billing.

Howard Phillips
May 4, 2008

His smile; it shines in the darkest of depths. There is hope yet.

CRUSTY MINGE posted:

Keep in mind that your VA coverage is relative to your rating and you won't be covered for some stuff unless you have a high enough rating. You may just want to keep your insurance if your rating isn't high enough to warrant mostly full coverage. Even then, poo poo like dental, you need to be 90-100% rating to get, or they'll dock it from your disability payment.

Granted, that doesn't always mean they're going to bill you, or turn you down. My brother doesn't have a rating and makes loving peanuts, still uses the VA and they negotiate what he pays for his meds and visits to basically nothing because they sat down and discussed his finances and expenses with him to figure out what he can afford. That seems very hit/miss and would depend on your patients advocate and whoever handles billing.

Most civilian policies don't cover dental anyways. Dental is almost always a separate plan you have to buy and even then it's basically the same price as paying out of pocket for routine visits and cleanings etc. Dental is only valuable if you have to get significant dental surgery or extensive work done. Of course that's what insurance is for but if you take care of your teeth then no need to carry a plan. I pay out of pocket for dental and keep a few thousand set aside if I have to have any dental surgery. YMMV.

CRUSTY MINGE
Mar 30, 2011
Chelsea Manning is a goddamned HERO


Yeah, dental insurance is a goddamn grift. I'm currently saving to get some work done. Probably gonna be a while.

Until then I have a traditional Southern smile.

Nostalgia4Dogges
Jun 18, 2004

Only emojis can express my pure, simple stupidity.



Dental poo poo sucksssss. Need to decide if Iíll do insurance, or just pay out of pocket. I did find a local dental hygienist school that did free cleanings

Also, itís near impossible to qualify for dental coverage through the VA. Pretty extreme parameters iirc

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Flying_Crab
Apr 12, 2002





CRUSTY MINGE posted:

Keep in mind that your VA coverage is relative to your rating and you won't be covered for some stuff unless you have a high enough rating. You may just want to keep your insurance if your rating isn't high enough to warrant mostly full coverage. Even then, poo poo like dental, you need to be 90-100% rating to get, or they'll dock it from your disability payment.

Granted, that doesn't always mean they're going to bill you, or turn you down. My brother doesn't have a rating and makes loving peanuts, still uses the VA and they negotiate what he pays for his meds and visits to basically nothing because they sat down and discussed his finances and expenses with him to figure out what he can afford. That seems very hit/miss and would depend on your patients advocate and whoever handles billing.

Even if the VA bills you the copays are hilariously small: https://www.va.gov/health-care/copay-rates/

I'm 40% and get all my care from the VA and pay squat.

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