Update from the news about the VA and their back-log on disabilty claims

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Purgatory
Elite Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 24283
   Posted 6/16/2013 12:01 PM (GMT -6)   
An update for any Vets here and VA disability claims.
 
Still not a good answer, but perhaps an improvement.
 
This December, I will be have been waiting 4 years.
 
david
 

Purgatory
Elite Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 24283
   Posted 6/16/2013 5:16 PM (GMT -6)   
x

thought this would be of interest to any current HW PC Vet either starting the process or already in the systems waiting approval
Age: 60, 56 at PC dx, PSA 16.3
3rd Biopsy: 9/8 7 of 7 Positive, 40-90%, 4+3
open RP: 11/8, Catheter in 63 days
Path Rpt: 3+4, pT2c, 42g, 20% tumor, 1 pos margin
Incontinence & ED: None
Surgery Failed, recurrence within 9 months
Salvage Radiation 10/9-11/9, SRT failed within 9 months, PSA 12/12 = 40.x
Spent total of 1 ½ years on 21 catheters, Ileal Conduit Surgery 9/10,
7 other PC-related surgeries 2009-2012
Severe Chronic Pain, Severe Fatigue, & Urostomy
Member of Prostate Cancer & Chronic Pain HW Communities since 10/2008
“I live in the weak and the wounded” – Session Nine (Movie)

John T
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 3733
   Posted 6/16/2013 5:21 PM (GMT -6)   
The problem is not the system, but the culture in the VA. I've been dealing with them for 43 years and the last 5 years has been awful because of the bureaucracy. They didn't have this problem after WW2 when we had 20 million vets or when I got out of the military. All my claims took no more than a few weeks back then. When it takes 4 times to get things right instead of once it's going to take 4 times as long. I think the problem is endemic in all Federal agencies and the VA is symptomatic of this general breakdown of accountability.
I saw the same thing happen in California when it started to take 3 or 4 trips to any state agency to accomplish a simple task or request.

Post Edited (John T) : 6/16/2013 4:28:27 PM (GMT-6)


gunfighter
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2012
Total Posts : 1218
   Posted 6/16/2013 7:47 PM (GMT -6)   
Dave/Purg,
Your situation is way past ridiculous! I realize that you are very intelligent but something is wrong-did you enclose statements from crew members and flight logs when you refueled in Cameron Bay, RVN..I doubt that the VA will get any of this information for you..
I have Never heard of anyone having to wait 4 years; now, if you received a dishonorable then all bets are off*lol. What is going on?? Is a trip to see the VA Secretary warranted?? I'm sorry for being rude, but I do wish you well.
Bill
Age 71--a "well seasoned" vet
Dx'd Sept 2010 by symptoms--PSA 4.89--5 G8's and 4 G7's out of 10 cores..High volume with extra capular extension present..79.2Gys IMRT completed in Feb 2011 with 6 months casodex and 3 years lupron--.06 psa after radiation and now-<.03--6 months Lupron to go..

Tim G
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 1419
   Posted 6/16/2013 8:12 PM (GMT -6)   
David,

I'm so sorry that, after all you've gone through, you can't get a claim through the VA system in four years. I'm not going to get started on the VA, because it is essentially a political question and disallowed here.

John T: After 43 years dealing with the VA, your experience says it all.

To all of you veterans awaiting a VA decision: Hang in there.

Purgatory
Elite Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 24283
   Posted 6/16/2013 10:41 PM (GMT -6)   
Bill:

Mine is held up, because it was turned down in SC, after wasting almost 2 years fighting with them on the smallest of technicalities. They tried everything to keep me from sending it to appeal in DC. WHen I finally insisted, the SC folks literally called me nasty names on the phone and hung up on me.

THen my files got "lost" in DC, imagine that. My local county VA people have been great, but only have so much control.

It has been in Washington for 1 1/2 years now. They even know the exact person at the exact desk that has my files now.

I contacted my U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (you see his name in the news all the time), he was very decent, looked into it, found it in the hardship category now, but said he was told there were, and I quote from a letter from him, "there were tens of thousands in that category", and that there was nothing more he could do to get me bumped up.

On my last trip to the county folk, they had my doctor prepare a pretty grim letter of my condition and prognosis, as well as some additional military records. But the person in DC said, that in 2012, they were only starting to process the hardship cases that were filed in 2005 (7 years behind at that point), and that I would simply have to wait my turn. How's that for a slap in the face?

These are the same people, that argued in SC, that I was in the Navy while I was still a junior in high school in FL in 1968. I joined on my 18th birthday on July 13, 1970, two years later. They told me on the phone, that I was wrong. If they are that f**d up on the most basic facts, I feel that it's utterly hopeless.

And for the record, I have a straight forward Honorable Discharge. Not a medical discharge, a regular honorable discharge.

I have now found a law firm that claims they can help vets out in my situation for contingency, but I don't feel real warm and cozy, and wondering if its just a scam in disguise.

I will be visiting my county folks in a week or two, and see if they can check back with the person holding my records.

This is what I get for not being a draft dodger, having a low lottery number, or not ducking into college, etc. I thought I was doing the right moral thing at the tender age of 18. I realize I was lucky to come home with all my limbs attached or not home in a body bag, but still, I served my time, I was in Nam, and I and served honorably. Yes I am bitter, plus we fought in a war that wasn't a real war, according to the media, a police action if I remember, then like many others of our time, was treated like utter s**t when we got back home.

Sorry, didn't start this out to be a vent. I really honestly believe that VA wants as many of us aging Viet Nam vets to simply die off and go away so they don't have to make good. At the rate my claim has gone, and if it continues, they may get the last laugh with me.

Sorry, over with. Will be quiet now.

david

p.s. I am third generation military in my family, my oldest son makes it 4 generations. My family names has done its donation for the causes through the years.
Age: 60, 56 at PC dx, PSA 16.3
3rd Biopsy: 9/8 7 of 7 Positive, 40-90%, 4+3
open RP: 11/8, Catheter in 63 days
Path Rpt: 3+4, pT2c, 42g, 20% tumor, 1 pos margin
Incontinence & ED: None
Surgery Failed, recurrence within 9 months
Salvage Radiation 10/9-11/9, SRT failed within 9 months, PSA 12/12 = 40.x
Spent total of 1 ½ years on 21 catheters, Ileal Conduit Surgery 9/10,
7 other PC-related surgeries 2009-2012
Severe Chronic Pain, Severe Fatigue, & Urostomy
Member of Prostate Cancer & Chronic Pain HW Communities since 10/2008
“I live in the weak and the wounded” – Session Nine (Movie)

Purgatory
Elite Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 24283
   Posted 6/16/2013 10:42 PM (GMT -6)   
P.S. If nothing else, I want my American Flag on my casket when I die, so it can be given to my wife. If they want to renege on that small cost, I will pay for it in advance.
Age: 60, 56 at PC dx, PSA 16.3
3rd Biopsy: 9/8 7 of 7 Positive, 40-90%, 4+3
open RP: 11/8, Catheter in 63 days
Path Rpt: 3+4, pT2c, 42g, 20% tumor, 1 pos margin
Incontinence & ED: None
Surgery Failed, recurrence within 9 months
Salvage Radiation 10/9-11/9, SRT failed within 9 months, PSA 12/12 = 40.x
Spent total of 1 ½ years on 21 catheters, Ileal Conduit Surgery 9/10,
7 other PC-related surgeries 2009-2012
Severe Chronic Pain, Severe Fatigue, & Urostomy
Member of Prostate Cancer & Chronic Pain HW Communities since 10/2008
“I live in the weak and the wounded” – Session Nine (Movie)

gunfighter
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2012
Total Posts : 1218
   Posted 6/16/2013 11:07 PM (GMT -6)   
Dave/Purg,
I apologize for being so rough on you. All I can say is I hope that you get the case resolved soon--I feel for you.
Bill

Purgatory
Elite Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 24283
   Posted 6/16/2013 11:30 PM (GMT -6)   
Bill, you said nothing wrong or rough. I have been pro-active from the day this claim was filed. I originally expected no problem. So much of it depends on what state you are filing from, SC has a horrible reputation in these matters, thus the 2 years I wasted with them.

And I don't feel singled out, especially learning that my claim is in a pile of "tens of thousands". I am no more special than any of my other brothers out there waiting. Hope we all get all "day in court" so to speak.

And I will not, ever give up. Not as long as I am this side of the dirt. I will not go away.

david
Age: 60, 56 at PC dx, PSA 16.3
3rd Biopsy: 9/8 7 of 7 Positive, 40-90%, 4+3
open RP: 11/8, Catheter in 63 days
Path Rpt: 3+4, pT2c, 42g, 20% tumor, 1 pos margin
Incontinence & ED: None
Surgery Failed, recurrence within 9 months
Salvage Radiation 10/9-11/9, SRT failed within 9 months, PSA 12/12 = 40.x
Spent total of 1 ½ years on 21 catheters, Ileal Conduit Surgery 9/10,
7 other PC-related surgeries 2009-2012
Severe Chronic Pain, Severe Fatigue, & Urostomy
Member of Prostate Cancer & Chronic Pain HW Communities since 10/2008
“I live in the weak and the wounded” – Session Nine (Movie)

81GyGuy
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2012
Total Posts : 987
   Posted 6/17/2013 8:07 AM (GMT -6)   
David -

I have been reading but haven't said anything up until now because I, like most everyone else here, am just appalled by your situation.

And if Senator Lindsey Graham, who is indeed one of the more powerful senators in Washington, can't break up the logjam that has become your application, what can any of the rest of us do?

But you do have my (our) absolute sympathies, and we can only hope that somehow, someway, there might be some kind of breakthrough for you.
Age: 67
Chronic prostatitis (age 60 on)
BPH w/ urinary obstruction, 6/2011
TURP, 7/2011
Ongoing high PSA, 7/2011-12/2011
Biopsy, 12/2011: positive 3/12 (90%, 70%, 5%)
Gleason 6, T1c
No mets, PCa likely still contained
IMRT w/ HT (Lupron), 4/2012-6/2012
PSA (8/3/2012): 0.1
PSA (12/7/2012): 0.1
PSA (4/11/2013): 0.1

Purgatory
Elite Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 24283
   Posted 6/17/2013 9:00 AM (GMT -6)   
thanks 81.

even though sen. graham and I are of different parties, and he knew this, he went out of his way to assist me. his office here in Greenville was very sympathetic and helpful. he wrote me 3 different lengthy letters while he was investigating. in one of them, he wrote how appalled he was at the VA systems, and assured me, that he was helping other local vets in a similar matter, and how we vets are treated or mis-treated, was a subject dear to his heart.

I haven't gotten any followup, but he was going to investigate the VA regional in SC, that cussed me out and hung up on me when I was trying to start my appeal in DC. He said that was unacceptable.

Thanks for your support, I don't feel I am being selfish, only wishing to have what I am entitled to. And for any of us brothers from Viet-Nam days, we could never be properly re-paid for how we were treated by the nation we loved and served.

david
Age: 60, 56 at PC dx, PSA 16.3
3rd Biopsy: 9/8 7 of 7 Positive, 40-90%, 4+3
open RP: 11/8, Catheter in 63 days
Path Rpt: 3+4, pT2c, 42g, 20% tumor, 1 pos margin
Incontinence & ED: None
Surgery Failed, recurrence within 9 months
Salvage Radiation 10/9-11/9, SRT failed within 9 months, PSA 12/12 = 40.x
Spent total of 1 ½ years on 21 catheters, Ileal Conduit Surgery 9/10,
7 other PC-related surgeries 2009-2012
Severe Chronic Pain, Severe Fatigue, & Urostomy
Member of Prostate Cancer & Chronic Pain HW Communities since 10/2008
“I live in the weak and the wounded” – Session Nine (Movie)

beachbum50
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 269
   Posted 6/17/2013 12:11 PM (GMT -6)   
David, Here is a link to a story in todays paper about the VA in Virginia.
http://hamptonroads.com/2013/06/backlog-va-means-vets-must-wait-claims
As bad as it is up here, looks like SC is worse.
Beachbum
Beachbum
PSA 10 June 2007
Biopsy July 2, 15 of 16 samples positive
T2C
3+3=6
prostate weighed 40 grams
Di Vinci 10/09/07, four hours on table, 3 in recovery
Total time in Hospital: 29 hours, 3+4=7
Record for Dr. Lance, 65% of prostate had cancer, but NO spread, clean margins,Clean nodes,
First PSA at 5 weeks, UNDETECTABLE!
Update, 05/30/13, less than .03, undetectable.
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