Infantryman Josh Odom was seven months into his first tour in Iraq when someone lobbed a grenade over the gate at the combat outpost he guarded. It exploded six feet from the Rockwall native, driving three chunks of shrapnel deep into his right shoulder. One pierced his lung. (Snip) Delays in the processing of disability claims are a familiar problem at the VA, one that federal officials have long vowed to solve. But in fiscal 2012, the average time to complete a VA disability compensation or pension claim
Comments: It´s a disgrace our veterans are treated this way. But imagine when the federal gov´t is controlling all health care decisions.
I do not understand the animosity toward the VA system. I have been under their care for over ten years, including getting medication and annual physicals, glasses and whatever. I use both the Dallas and Bonham VA and was accepted [with DD Form 214] the first day that I showed up and went through their sign up process.
I´ve had to use their emergency room when scolded with superheated water and have had major surgery there. Other than maybe sending me, a single guy home sooner to recuperate than I´d like, they have been the best to me. I use to work in the medical field, traveling to hospitals all around the country, major and small and know good health care.
The real problem is not the VA, other than it is used as a bargaining chip by Washington when military budgets are done. The real problem is that vets, injured or "mental," should be able to go to the hospital of their choice. Isn´t that what our Congressmen and illegal aliens do? Which do you think have earned THAT right?
#2, you are confusing V.A. medical care with the V.A. paper bureaucracy; two different entities within V.A. I know of veterans who have waited over 2 years and was told they would have to wait approximately 2 more years to adjudicate their claims.
I too like the medical care I receive from V.A. but I know there is a severe problem on the C&P side of V.A.
If you want to fast forward into what Obamacare is going to transform into,just look at the inept and incompetent VA for a clue.This has always been one of the government´s biggest dysfunctional depts.which pays through the nose for bureaucracy but shorts the vets.Of course this is a national disgrace but reforming the VA is a near impossibility.
Of course no level of dysfunctionality gets in the way of VA bureaucrats getting their hefty "performance" bonuses once a year.
"We have to pay these bonuses or risk losing these people to the private sector." What a joke.
Unfortunately, cynical and skeptical are my default settings these days. Saying "it´s for the vets" sounds a lot like "it´s for the children". Disability claims have become the way to go for an increasing chunk of the population. I don´t think the vet community is immune. I´m not saying all claims are bogus, but it´s certainly probable that some are. The question is how many?
In the Chicago area disability/compensation claims take 2-4 years. I almost died in 07 from Agent Orange and my claim is now 6 years old. The VA mantra is "DELAY, DENY, DIE". The healthcare is fine it is the claims that are taking so long.
#10. My spouse filed in 2006 re: agent orange. His claims were finally decided in Feb., 2012, 4 months after he died. Now as his widow, I wait for the DIC claim to be decided, and reimbursment of his final expenses and hope I live long enough.
Yes, it needs to be clear that there is a difference between the care at the VA hospital and the claims processing. I was astounded to learn from a veteran friend that the claims are still processed through a PAPER SYSTEM. That´s right! Not a computer system, a paper system. This problem is briefly mentioned in this article, buried deep:
A new electronic benefits management system, which will replace the paper system, will speed claims processing ...
And there are 800 bureaucrats processing the claims. It is unclear from the article if those 800 all work in the Waco office or if that covers more locations, but it sounds like 800 claims workers just in Waco.
While one can understand that time would be required to locate 40 year-old records for the old-timers, this guy is young, was just discharged from an Army hospital and his records were readily available.
Okay folks who are so negative about the VA. Would you agree that any veteran who filed a claim for disability automatically be granted that disability rating; i.e., life long monthly payments without any review of the validity of the claim? So every Vietnam Veteran should be awarded disability because of Agent Orange even if never exposed to it? That would certainly simplify the process.
On the other hand, I read statements here everyday about all the fraud, waste and abuse within the federal government but then all this anger that these claims take so long to resolve because of the necessary review of the claim and its validity or lack thereof.
Any time an Obama drone tells me how "wonderful" Obamacare will be, I ask them if they´re aware of the horrible state of the Federally run VA healthcare, or the waste and abuse rampant in Medicare? I then follow up with, "So how do you think enlarging a failed system can possibly improve it?"
SOUTH ORANGE, N.J. -- The victim of a vicious knockout attack in New Jersey is speaking out for the first time. He was cold-cocked, and hit not just with a fist, but with a glove with hard plastic knuckles. Two of the four attackers are still on the run. "All of a sudden, I was trying to watch my back and these two came around front and punches my face," the victim said. The 36-year-old restaurant worker does not want his name or face on television, and who could blame him? He still has headaches from a concussion and six
Sears stock plummeted Wednesday as news came out that Edward Lampert, its stubborn billionaire chairman and CEO, had to surrender majority control of the 120-year-old big box retailer when investors in Lampert’s hedge fund pulled money out. With no end in sight for Lampert’s quixotic turnaround efforts, it’s time to question whether there’s any way to save Sears as long as he remains in charge. (Snip) Lampert began at Sears with the ill-fated $12 billion merger with Kmart in 2005. Sales have declined for 27 straight quarters and the company’s stock is down over 70% from its high in 2007.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has no system in place to prevent fraud when individuals apply for tax credits under Obamacare, according to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA). The IG said in an audit released Tuesday that the IRS has no plan to manage, monitor, or mitigate fraud risk when processing premium tax credits available under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). “The ACA Program has not yet completed a fraud mitigation strategy,” the audit found. “It is important for the IRS to thoroughly consider fraud threats and risks that could impact new ACA systems.” Politico reports: The
Around 100,000 Americans successfully signed up for health insurance in November through the troubled federal online marketplace, HealthCare.gov, a person familiar with the preliminary data confirmed to ABC News. The figure reflects a surge in enrollment as software and hardware fixes to the site were made over the course of the month. In October, only 26,000 people could successfully enroll in Obamacare plans, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. "We´ve been working 24/7 to make improvements, and more consumers are successfully shopping online and enrolling in a health plan each week," Health and Human Services Secretary
NEW HAVEN >> The jail cell death last weekend of Yale University professor Samuel See, known as a brilliant writer and rising star in academia, has shaken up the tight-knit college community. Now adding to the mystery of his unexpected death are apparent connections between the online profiles of See and several escort service websites that include a cache of sexually explicit photos. At least four websites advertising male escort services included a phone number connected to See. The website Ryan Cochran Escort Services includes the same phone number listed on an order of protection filed against See in September.
For many Ann Arborites, Thanksgiving is a day devoted to giving thanks, spending time with family, eating turkey and watching the Detroit Lions. This year, retail giants want that to change. (Snip) The early openings change the game for retail giants looking to boost profits through aggressive holiday sales. It also means millions of retail employees in the U.S. are working on the holiday, and it poses the question to consumers: Is a bargain on a 70-inch television or an Apple iPad worth ditching Thanksgiving dinner? “You couldn’t pay me to stand in a line in the cold on Thanksgiving
Macy´s Inc and a slew of other U.S. retailers are opening on Thanksgiving for the first time ever in a bare-knuckled brawl for a bigger slice of overall holiday sales. But it might not be so easy to lure most Americans from their turkey and football - particularly if the weather is foul. Department store rivals Kohl´s Corp and J.C. Penney Co Inc led a string of Thanksgiving opening announcements after Macy´s said it would open its U.S. stores on the popular holiday, ending a 155-year tradition. Sales trends, survey results and an online "Save Thanksgiving" backlash suggest that shoppers
The question all week long was this: Who are you going to believe, an illegal alien or the president of the United States of America? Obviously, if it’s a president who once went by an alias, Barry Soetoro, you go with Uncle Omar, 100 percent, no questions asked. And so it was that the White House finally admitted to another, uh, misstatement — despite previous denials, Barack/Barry did sleep on his beloved Uncle Omar’s couch in Cambridge when he first moved here to attend Harvard Law School (speaking of which, we’re still waiting to see the president’s grades and his LSAT scores). But the
More young men in California rise in pitch at the end of their sentences when talking, new research shows. This process is known as "uptalk" or "valleygirl speak" and has in the past been associated with young females, typically from California or Australia.But now a team says that this way of speaking is becoming more frequent among men.The findings were presented at the Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America in California. "We found use of uptalk in all of our speakers, despite their diverse backgrounds in socioeconomic status, ethnicity, bilingualism and gender," said Amanda Ritchart, a linguist at the University of
How do you get your arms around the catastrophe known as Obamacare? Is it even possible? At this point, I’m not sure it is. The list of individual disasters which threaten to ruin one-sixth of the U.S. economy and what has been, up until now, the best healthcare system in the world is exhaustive, and exhausting. The examples I will identify here barely scratch the surface. First but by no means foremost, we have the supposedly new and improved HealthCare.gov. Except it’s not, even the visible part. Stories still abound of people still failing to get in or to get through the enrollment
DAVID CORN: I saw a president who remains frustrated with the political-media culture that he has to work within, and that he´s looking to rally people, students here, and supporters, and people within the media. CHRIS MATTHEWS: But David Corn, you skeptic. He came to us today. He came amongst us. CORN: He´s trying to rally people behind this vision that he´s been promoting for a couple years. FINEMAN: By the way, he did it the end here, today, Chris, not by defending specifics, but by explaining why he´s in the game to begin with. And I don´t know about you, he´s
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has announced a new five-year strategic plan to improve safety for elderly drivers and passengers. Although they are statistically among the safest on the road, the number of older drivers is increasing dramatically — and with it, that group´s numbers of injuries and deaths. Since 2003, the population of older adults, defined as age 65 and older, has increased by 20% and the number of licensed older drivers increased by 21% to 35 million in 2012, according to NHTSA. Last year, NHTSA reported that 5,560 people older than 65 died and 214,000 were injured
The most curious thing of all about the November jobs report released on Friday was the huge drop in the unemployment rate — and the fact that the Labor Department chose not to disclose that the data going into that figure are under investigation for falsification. On Nov. 19, I broke the news in my column that the Census Bureau, which collects data that goes into the jobless rate on behalf of Labor, had caught one of its enumerators fabricating interviews in 2010. The culprit said back then (and to me during an interview) that he was told to do so by
7. On the U.S. war with Iraq: “If there is a country that has committed unspeakable atrocities in the world, it is the United States of America. They don’t care for human beings.” Via cbsnews.com 6. On Israel: “Israel should withdraw from all the areas which it won from the Arabs in 1967, and in particular Israel should withdraw completely from the Golan Heights, from south Lebanon and from the West Bank.” Via jweekly.com 5. On the U.S. war with Iraq: “All that (Mr. Bush) wants is Iraqi oil.” Via cbsnews.com 4. Mandela on Castro and the Cuban revolution: “From its earliest days, the Cuban Revolution has also been a