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RAO Bulletin January 2011    (click to open document)

RAO Bulletin December 2010 
  (click to open document)

 
VA Claims Update 19   (Click to open)

VA Expands Medical Forms Program to Support Faster Claims Processing
WASHINGTON -- The Department of Veterans Affairs announced today the release of 68 new forms that will help speed the processing of Veterans’ disability compensation and pension claims.
“VA employees will be able to more quickly process disability claims, since disability benefits questionnaires capture important medical information needed to accurately evaluate Veterans’ claims,” said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki. “Disability benefits questionnaires are just one of many changes VA is implementing to address the backlog of claims.”
The new forms bring to 71 the number of documents, called disability benefits questionnaires (DBQs), that guide physicians’ reports of medical findings, ensuring VA has exactly the medical information needed to make a prompt decision.
When needed to decide a disability claim for compensation or pension benefits, VA provides Veterans with free medical examinations for the purpose of gathering the necessary medical evidence.
Veterans who choose to have their private physicians complete the medical examination can now give their physicians the same form a VA provider would use. It is very important that physicians provide complete responses to all questions on the DBQs. VA cannot pay for a private physician to complete DBQs or for any costs associated with examination or testing.
“By ensuring relevant medical information can be found on one form, we will cut processing time while improving quality,” added Under Secretary for Benefits Allison A. Hickey.
DBQ’s can be found at http://benefits.va.gov/disabilityexams. The newly released DBQs follow the initial release of three DBQs for Agent Orange-related conditions.
Veterans may file a claim online through the eBenefits web portal at https://www.ebenefits.va.gov. The Department of Defense and VA jointly developed the eBenefits portal as a single secure point of access for online benefit information and tools to perform multiple self-service functions such as checking the status of their claim.
Servicemembers may enroll in eBenefits using their Common Access Card at any time during their military service, or before they leave during their Transition Assistance Program briefings. Veterans may also enroll in eBenefits and obtain a Premium account in-person or online depending on their status.

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Below are web-sites that provide information on Veterans benefits and how to file/ask for them. Accordingly, there are many sites that explain how to obtain books, military/medical records, information and how to appeal a denied claim with the VA.  Please pass this information on to every Veteran you know.  Nearly 100% of this information is free and available for all veterans, the only catch is: you have to ask for it, because they won't tell you about a specific benefit unless you ask for it.  You need to know what questions to ask so the right doors open for you   and then be ready to have an advocate who is willing to work with and for you, stay in the process, and press for your rights and your best interests.

Appeals http://www.warms.vba.va.gov/admin21/m21_1/mr/part1/ch05.doc 
Board of Veteran's Appeals http://www.va.gov/vbs/bva/ 
CARES Commission http://www.va.gov/vbs/bva/ 
CARES Draft National Plan http://www1.va.gov/cares/page.cfm?pg=105  
Center for Minority Veterans http://www1.va.gov/centerforminorityveterans/ 
Center for Veterans Enterprise http://www.vetbiz.gov/default2.htm 
Center for Women Veterans http://www1.va.gov/womenvet/ 
Clarification on the changes in VA healthcare for Gulf War Veterans http://www.gulfwarvets.com/ubb/Forum1/HTML/000016.html 
Classified Records - American Gulf War Veterans Assoc http://www.gulfwarvets.com/ubb/Forum18/HTML/000011.html 
Compensation for Disabilities Associated with the Gulf War Service http://www.warms.vba.va.gov/admin21/m21_1/part6%20/ch07.doc 
Compensation Rate Tables, 12-1-03 http://www.vba.va.gov/bln/21/Rates/comp01.htm 
Department of Veterans Affairs Home Page http://www.va.gov/  
Directory of Veterans Service Organizations http://www1.va.gov/vso/index.cfm?template=view 
Disability Examination Worksheets Index, Comp http://www.vba.va.gov/bln/21/Benefits/exams/index.htm 
Due Process http://www.warms.vba.va.gov/admin21/m21_1/mr/part1/ch02.doc  
Duty to Assist http://www.warms.vba.va.gov/admin21/m21_1/mr/part1/ch01.doc 
Electronic Code of Federal Regulations http://www.gpoaccess.gov/ecfr/ 
Emergency, Non-emergency, and Fee Basis Care http://www1.va.gov/opa/vadocs/fedben.pdf 
Environmental Agents http://www1.va.gov/environagents/ 
Environmental Agents M10 http://www1.va.gov/vhapublications/ViewPublication.asp?pub_ID=1002 
Establishing Combat Veteran Eligibility http://www1.va.gov/vhapublications/ViewPublication.asp?pub_ID=315   
EVALUATION PROTOCOL FOR GULF WAR AND IRAQI FREEDOM VETERANS WITH POTENTIAL EXPOSURE TO DEPLETED URANIUM (DU)http://www1.va.gov/gulfwar/docs/DUHandbook1303122304.DOC  and http://www1.va.gov/vhapublications/ViewPublication.asp?pub_ID=1158 
See also, Depleted Uranium Fact Sheet http://www1.va.gov/gulfwar/docs/DepletedUraniumFAQSheet.doc  
EVALUATION PROTOCOL FOR NON-GULF WAR VETERANS WITH POTENTIAL EXPOSURE TO DEPLETED URANIUM (DU)http://www1.va.gov/gulfwar/docs/DUHANDBOOKNONGW130340304.DOC  
Fee Basis, PRIORITY FOR OUTPATIENT MEDICAL SERVICES AND INPATIENT HOSPITAL CARE http://www1.va..gov/vhapublications/ViewPublication.asp?pub_ID=206 Federal Benefits for Veterans and Dependants 2005 http://www1.va.gov/opa/vadocs/fedben.pdf OR, http://www1.va..gov/opa/vadocs/current_benefits.htm  
Forms and Records Request http://www.va.gov/vaforms/    
General Compensation Provisions http://www.access.gpo.gov/uscode/title38/partii_chapter11_subchaptervi_.html 
Geriatrics and Extended Care http://www1.va.gov/geriatricsshg/  
Guideline for Chronic Pain and Fatigue MUS-CPG http://www.oqp.med.va.gov/cpg/cpgn/mus/mus_base.htm 
Guide to Gulf War Veteran's Health http://www1.va.gov/gulfwar/docs/VHIgulfwar.pdf 
Gulf War Subject Index http://www1.va.gov/GulfWar/page.cfm?pg=7&template=main&letter=A 
Gulf War Veteran's Illnesses Q&As http://www1.va.gov/gulfwar/docs/GWIllnessesQandAsIB1041.pdf  
Hearings 
http://www.warms.vba.va.gov/admin21/m21_1/mr/part1/ch04.doc 
Homeless Veterans http://www1.va.gov/homeless/ 
HSR&D Home http://www.hsrd.research.va.gov/ 
Index to Disability Examination Worksheets C&P exams http://www.vba.va.gov/bln/21/benefits/exams/index.htm 
Ionizing Radiation http://www1.va.gov/irad/    
Iraqi Freedom/Enduring Freedom Veterans VBA http://www.vba.va.gov/EFIF/         
M 10 for spouses and children <http://www1..va.gov/vhapublications/ViewPublication.asp?pub_ID=1007   
M10 Part III Change 1 http://www1.va.gov/vhapublications/ViewPublication.asp?pub_ID=1008 
M21-1 Table of Contents http://www.warms.vba.va.gov/M21_1.html  
Mental Disorders, Schedule of Ratings http://www.warms.vba.va.gov/regs/38CFR/BOOKC/PART4/S4_130.DOC  
Mental Health Program Guidelines http://www1.va.gov/vhapublications/ViewPublication.asp?pub_ID=1094 
Mental Illness Research, Education and Clinical Centers http://www.mirecc.med.va.gov/          
MS (Multiple Sclerosis) Centers of Excellence http://www.va.gov/ms/about.asp 
My Health e Vet http://www.myhealth.va.gov/ 
NASDVA.COM http://nasdva.com/  
National Association of State Directors http://www.nasdva.com/ 
National Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention http://www.nchpdp.med.va.gov/postdeploymentlinks.asp 
Neurological Conditions and Convulsive Disorders, Schedule of Ratings http://www.warms.vba.va.gov/regs/38cfr/bookc/part4/s4%5F124a.doc 
OMI (Office of Medical Inspector) http://www.omi.cio.med.va.gov/ 
Online VA Form 10-10EZ https://www.1010ez..med.va.gov/sec/vha/1010ez/ 
Parkinson's Disease and Related Neurodegenerative Disorders http://www1.va.gov/resdev/funding/solicitations/docs/parkinsons.pdf   
and, http://www1.va.gov/padrecc/          
Peacetime Disability Compensation http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=browse_usc&docid=Cite:+38USC1131 
Pension for Non-Service-Connected Disability or Death http://www.access.gpo.gov/uscode/title38/partii_chapter15_subchapteri_.html          and,http://www.access.gpo.gov/uscode/title38/partii_chapter15_subchapterii_.html   
and, http://www.access.gpo.gov/uscode/title38/partii_chapter15_subchapteriii_.html 
Persian Gulf Registry http://www1.va.gov/vhapublications/ViewPublication.asp?pub_ID=1003   
This program is now referred to as Gulf War Registry Program (to include Operation Iraqi Freedom) as of March 7, 2005: http://www1..va.gov/vhapublications/ViewPublication.asp?pub_ID=1232 
Persian Gulf Registry Referral Centers http://www1.va.gov/vhapublications/ViewPublication.asp?pub_ID=1006 
Persian Gulf Veterans' Illnesses Research 1999, Annual Report To Congress http://www1.va.gov/resdev/1999_Gulf_War_Veterans'_Illnesses_Appendices.doc        

 Persian Gulf Veterans' Illnesses Research 2002, Annual Report To   congress http://www1.va.gov/resdev/prt/gulf_war_2002/GulfWarRpt02.pdf  
Phase I PGR http://www1.va.gov/vhapublications/ViewPublication.asp?pub_ID=1004 
Phase II PGR http://www1.va.gov/vhapublications/ViewPublication.asp?pub_ID=1005          
Policy Manual Index http://www.va.gov/publ/direc/eds/edsmps.htm  
Power of Attorney http://www.warms.vba..va.gov/admin21/m21_1/mr/part1/ch03.doc         

Project 112 (Including Project SHAD) http://www1.va.gov/shad/ 
Prosthetics Eligibility http://www1.va.gov/vhapublications/ViewPublication.asp?pub_ID=337 
Public Health and Environmental Hazards Home Page http://www.vethealth.cio.med.va.gov/  
Public Health/SARS http://www..publichealth.va.gov/SARS/  
Publications Manuals http://www1.va.gov/vhapublications/publications.cfm?Pub=4 
Publications and Reports http://www1.va.gov/resdev/prt/pubs_individual.cfm?webpage=gulf_war.htm   
Records Center and Vault Homepage http://www.aac.va.gov/vault/default.html  
Records Center and Vault Site Map http://www.aac.va.gov/vault/sitemap.html  
REQUEST FOR AND CONSENT TO RELEASE OF INFORMATION FROM CLAIMANT'S RECORDS http://www.forms.va.gov/va/Internet/VARF/getformharness.asp?formName=3288-form.xft   
Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans Illnesses April 11, 2002 http://www1.va.gov/rac-gwvi/docs/Minutes_April112002.doc  
Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans Illnesses 
http://www1.va.gov/rac-gwvi/docs/ReportandRecommendations_2004.pdf 
Research and Development http://www.appc1.va.gov/resdev/programs/all_programs.cfm 
Survivor's and Dependents' Educational Assistance http://www.access.gpo.gov/uscode/title38/partiii_chapter35_.html 
Title 38 Index Parts 0-17
 
http://ecfr.gpoaccess.gov/cgi/t/text/text-idx?sid=1b0c269b510d3157fbf8f8801bc9b3dc&c=ecfr&tpl=/ecfrbrowse/Title38/38cfrv1_02.tpl   
Part 18 
http://ecfr.gpoaccess.gov/cgi/t/text/text-idx?sid=1b0c269b510d3157fbf8f8801bc9b3dc&c=ecfr&tpl=/ecfrbrowse/Title38/38cfrv2_02.tpl 
Title 38 Part 3 Adjudication Subpart A "Pension, Compensation, and Dependency and Indemnity Compensation http://ecfr.gpoaccess.gov/cgi/t/text/text-idx?c=ecfr&sid=1b0c269b510d3157fbf8f8801bc9b3dc&tpl=/ecfrbrowse/Title38/38cfr3_main_02.tpl   
Title 38 Pensions, Bonuses & Veterans Relief (also § 3.317 Compensation for certain disabilities due to undiagnosed illnesses found here) http://ecfr.gpoaccess.gov/cgi/t/text/text-idx?c=ecfr&sid=1b0c269b510d3157fbf8f8801bc9b3dc&tpl=/ecfrbrowse/Title38/38cfr3_main_02.tpl  Title 38 PART 4--SCHEDULE FOR RATING DISABILITIES Subpart B--DISABILITY RATINGS 
http://ecfr.gpoaccess.gov/cgi/t/text/text-idx?c=ecfr&sid=ab7641afd195c84a49a2067dbbcf95c0&rgn=div6&view=text&node=38:1.0.1.1.5.2&idno=38 
Title 38§ 4.16 Total disability ratings for compensation based on unemployability of the individual. PART A "SCHEDULE FOR RATING DISABILITIES Subpart à "General Policy in Rating http://ecfr.gpoaccess.gov/cgi/t/text/text-idx?c=ecfr&sid=1b0c269b510d3157fbf8f8801bc9b3dc&rgn=div8&view=text&node=38:1.0.1.1.5.1..96.11&idno=38 
U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims http://www.vetapp.gov/  
VA Best Practice Manual for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) http://www.avapl..org/pub/PTSD%20Manual%20final%206.pdf  
VA Fact Sheet http://www1.va..gov/opa/fact/gwfs.html 
VA Health Care Eligibility http://www.va.gov/healtheligibility/home/hecmain.asp 
VA INSTITUTING GLOBAL ASSESSMENT OF FUNCTION (GAF) http://www.avapl.org/gaf/gaf.html          
VA Life Insurance Handbook ¬" Chapter 3 http://www.insurance.va.gov/inForceGliSite/GLIhandbook/glibookletch3.htm#310 
VA Loan Lending Limits and Jumbo Loans http://valoans.com/va_facts_limits.cfm  
VA MS Research http://www.va.gov/ms/about.asp  
VA National Hepatitis C Program http://www.hepatitis..va.gov/   
VA Office of Research and Development http://www1.va.gov/resdev/  
VA Trainee Pocket Card on Gulf War http://www.va.gov/OAA/pocketcard/gulfwar.asp  
VA WMD EMSHG http://www1.va.gov/emshg/  
VA WRIISC-DC http://www.va.gov/WRIISC-DC/   
VAOIG Hotline Telephone Number and Address http://www.va.gov/oig/hotline/hotline3.htm 
Vet Center Eligibility - Readjustment Counseling Service http://www.va.gov/rcs/Eligibility.htm  
Veterans Benefits Administration Main Web Page http://www.vba.va.gov/  
Veterans Legal and Benefits Information http://valaw.org/  
VHA Forms, Publications, Manuals http://www1.va.gov/vhapublications/  
VHA Programs - Clinical Programs & Initiatives http://www1.va.gov/health_benefits/page.cfm?pg=13  http://webmaila.juno.com/webmail/new/UrlBlockedError.aspx> 
VHA Public Health Strategic Health Care Group Home Page http: // www.publichealth.va.gov/   
VHI Guide to Gulf War Veterans ¬(tm) Health http://www1.va.gov/vhi_ind_study/gulfwar/istudy/index.asp   
Vocational Rehabilitation http://www.vba.va.gov/bln/vre/  
Vocational Rehabilitation Subsistence http://www.vba.va.gov/bln/vre/InterSubsistencefy04.doc  
VONAPP online http://vabenefits.vba.va.gov/vonapp/main.asp  
WARMS - 38 CFR Book C http://www.warms.vba.va.gov/bookc.html  
Wartime Disability Compensation http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=browse_usc&docid=Cite:+38USC1110          
War-Related Illness and Injury Study Center - New Jersey http://www.wri.med.va.gov/  
Welcome to the GI Bill Web Site http://www.gibill.va.gov/ 
What VA Social Workers Do http://www1.va.gov/socialwork/page.cfm?pg=3 
WRIISC Patient Eligibility http://www.illegion.org/va1.html