Approvals for disability claims for Marine Veterans who were at Camp Lejeune between 1953 and1987 have dropped. This is in reference to disability claims filed with the Veterans Affairs Department for illnesses and disorders related to drinking and showering in contaminated water.
I was stationed at Camp LeJeune on and off from 68 to 71 when I wasn’t overseas doing what I was asked to do. I am sure I was receiving a healthy dose of the water contaminates while drinking it while in the heat of North Carolina. We showered in it too. If you were there for any length of time and drinking the tainted water, you are suffering from the contaminates. You may die before there is any recognizable impact. That you do not have recognizable organ failure, cancer, loss of cognizance, etc. is not indicative of no impact.
The VA administration has been problematic for decades. As Longman wrote in “The Best Care Anywhere” and Gordon talks about, you will have good care equal to what Commercial Healthcare provides, better healthcare, and far less costly. The care can be good, if you can get through the doors.
It is no mistake that Medicare is attempting to emulate what the VA is doing with pharmaceuticals. You have to ask why Congress and Schumer don’t allow Medicare to use the same formulary and pricing?
The following article exemplifies what I am saying. If the bastards were hurting the way some of us are, they would be singing a different tune.
“Groups demand information on Camp Lejeune disability claims” (militarytimes.com), Patricia Kime
The approval rate for disability claims filed with the Veterans Affairs Department for illnesses related to poisonous drinking water at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, has dropped by two-thirds. This comes after the VA implemented a third-party review process to provide medical opinions on related diagnoses.
The Camp Lejeune subject matter expert program requires a VA-appointed physician to review the medical files of former troops who lived on base from 1953 to 1987. Reviewing just those who are seeking compensation for illnesses or disorders related to drinking contaminated water there. It sounds pretty clean. In reality, it is not.
Since the start of the program in 2012, claims approvals have been dropping, going from 25 percent to 8 percent. Critics are questioning the independence and training of the VA’s 22 to 30-some experts. None of these experts have been identified or vetted.
Veterans advocacy groups (Vietnam Veterans of America, the Connecticut State Council of the Vietnam Veterans of America and The Few, the Proud, the Forgotten) have filed a Freedom of Information Act request for records about the subject matter expert program, seeking information on the identities, training and education of those experts. This makes sense to me. My blood disorder is kind of rare. A few years ago, they found an infusion which drives it back to dormancy.
Former Marine and Yale Law School student Rory Minnis, who is helping with the FOIA process, said VA has “largely ignored demands for basic information on the policies, procedures and qualifications of these experts.”
Not unusual and they wonder why veterans are turned off by the VA and unsupportive of it. And the VA wonders why!
The clincher is as Rory Minnis states it.
“The subject matter expert program has been billed as a means to provide consistency of Camp Lejeune claims and to help develop VA’s institutional knowledge. What the VA did not tell the veterans is what they meant by consistency is consistent denials”
Sarcasm made by Minnis during an announcement about the FOIA at Yale on Monday. This is nothing new.