Posted on May 3, 2019
SFC Small Group Leader
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At 14 years active duty so I'm wanting to start getting aches and pains annotated. I've gone to the clinic a few times already for certain things. But can somebody with a disability rating please explain the process for me and others on the best way to prepare for my inevitable retirement and getting the VA process going so I'm prepared for when that time comes? Thank you.
Posted in these groups: Imagescaylm8cd Disability
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MAJ Ken Landgren
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Edited 1 y ago
The initial document that gets the ball rolling is a permanent profile indicating you are unfit for continued duty. You will enter IDES: Integrated Disability Evaluation System (IDES) ... The IDES is a joint process established by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the Department of Defense (DoD) that includes a single set of disability medical examinations and disability ratings for use by both departments.

In the IDES process you will be in contact with a PEBLO: When a service member develops a medical condition and he is referred to the Integrated Disability Evaluation System, he is appointed a PEBLO (Physical Evaluation Board Liaison Officer) to assist him throughout the process.
The PEBLO is the main point of contact between the service member, the family, the chain of command, the VA, and the PEB throughout the DoD Disability Process.

It is the PEBLO’s job to compile all the information from the service member, his physicians, his commander, and any other source that is necessary to properly assign Military Disability Ratings to each of his medical conditions that qualify for Military Disability. Essentially the PEBLO is the belly button.

You will also see a VA rep on post. He or she will work on giving you a percentage. Before that occurs you will be physically evaluated by a VA doctor. The PEBLO and the VA rep will offer you percentages. If you think they are low balling you, speak up during this process. If the system works right, you should experience a seamless transition to the VA.
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MAJ Ken Landgren
MAJ Ken Landgren
1 y
On the bottom of this page are relevant topics to choose from.
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SFC Small Group Leader
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Thank you
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LTC Jason Mackay
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Edited 1 y ago
Frequent documentation at the MTF. Ensure any civilian medical records are integrated well in advance of retirement (like if you were on Tricare remote or seen off post). There is an office in the hospital that does this, ask at the information desk. They have you fill out release forms for them to ask for the records. You'll need the contact info for that offpost provider.

Get. a. Sleep. Study. Get it before you start the retirement process. Sleep Apnea impacts so many vets it is almost an inside joke. Sleep apnea used to carry a 50% - 60% rating.

When it comes time, seek out a VSO to help you do your claim. At Carson, DAV has an office one door from the VA Claim Office. They walked it to the VA with me and I had no hitches. After you file, the VA will call to scedule a physical evaluation. They'll have your records and the claim. It's like a pre employment physical. They have you move through different mobility ranges which are measured.

Expectation management. Understand that VA does not really give a shit if you have pain, although you get something for pain. The compensation is for things you can't do, loss of employability, you can't care for yourself, and any care/support you need to seek out to function. When they say 50%, they are talking 50% of about $2200 per month. Not your base pay. So if you get 100%, that's about $2200. You need at least 30% to be classified as disabled and receive compensation. When you file your claim in the last 60days on active duty, it preserves the "service connection". They can't approve it until you retire/ETS but they can accept it before then. The percentage is based off the largest disability percentage. Then the next percentage is based of the REMAINING percentage. So if you have a 50% condition, then a 20, then a 10, the 20 percent is applied Tom the remaining 50% so on and so on. A bunch of conditions are 10% because they can't or don't want to verify it. Examples tinnitus (ears ringing, only you can hear it), erectile dysfunction (no one Is going to max elevate your main gun tube to verify). Lower back pain (because only you can feel it). If they see something where it's service connected but not really a problem now, they can award 0%. It's a wedge in the system to refile later if it gets worse.

My personal experience...the things medically that impact me the most, are the lowest percentage.

- My back is f*cked. I can't run. I couldn't run my last 18 months on AD due to an injury I sustained on an obstacle course. I can't go to a Police or Fire Academy. Or run for fun. 10%.
- I got the sleep study. 50% for sleep apnea because I now require a medical device indefinitely.
- I got a small percentage for high blood pressure because it requires life long medication
I have 60% from VA.
- I got a knee and a shoulder rated at 0% each because the rice crispies sounds are normal...
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SFC Small Group Leader
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Thank you, Sir. So you didn't get anything for your shoulder and knee? Those are my two main injuries.
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LTC Jason Mackay
LTC Jason Mackay
1 y
SFC (Join to see) - that's just me. Your conditions will differ. Go to the MTF. Get treated. Try and fix it. I'd rather be able to run or sleep with out an air compressor attached to my face than get 60%, but there it is. Your claim will be unique to you.

I did some deep research and lost the link, but it was to the VAs complete list of conditions and percentages. Losing a limb was only like 30%.
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SFC Small Group Leader
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LTC Jason Mackay I totally agree. I would take pain relief over pay.
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CSM Roland Glenister
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Make sure you go and seek medical help and advice when you feel ill no matter what it is. Often times (especially leaders I.e Officers, Sr. NCOs try to be the tough guy and tough it out. No one takes takes care of you and your loved ones better ThAn you PERIOD. Make sure you have every visit to the aid station, clinic, hospital etc properly documented. Make an extra copy of your entire medical record and keep it in a safe place (easily accessible to you for updating as needed).

Your final out (when you are ready to exit the military life) is KEY. Th is is NOT THE TIME to hide things you are feeling and or experienced physically, medically, or mentally. The Medical Staff Person (whomever that might be) who goes over your ENTIRE MEDICAL history while you served your country must know or be made aware of EVERYTHING. Be honest about it. Not the time to be a HERO/Tough Guy as I often see leaders do. That final out screening and physical prior to your separation date will determine what ailments qualify or not qualify for a %. This is VERY IMPORTANT. That is why you need to make sure everything is documented properly.

You can always reassess or reevaluate for increased percentage points after you separate but it is preferred that you have a good baseline or starting point prior to separation. Remember; ailments you sustained prior to the military can also be considered as it may have been aggravated by your military physical activities. Any issues that may have gotten worse years after you separated can also be considered as you get older. I hope this helped.

REG
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SFC Small Group Leader
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1 mo
Thank you, CSM. I am definitely guilty of having too much pride when it comes to injuries and going to sick call.
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CSM Charles Hayden
CSM Charles Hayden
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SFC (Join to see) And also guilty of not maintaining pertinent, duplicate records?
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