In a news release posted today, VA proposed changes to the VA Schedule for Rating Disabilities (VASRD) specifically pertaining to the respiratory, auditory, and mental disorders body systems.  The changes would incorporate medical advancements for treating certain disabilities and modern medical knowledge to more accurately compensate Veterans.

VASRD is used to determine the appropriate level of compensation for each service-connected disability based on the severity of the condition as documented by supporting medical evidence. VA is in the process of updating all the body systems in the VASRD to reflect modern evaluative criteria based on advancements in medical terminology, diagnostics and treatment.

On Feb. 15, the Veterans Benefits Administration will publish proposed rules in the Federal Register regarding changes to the regulations for the two body systems: respiratory system; ear, nose and throat conditions, and auditory disorders; and mental disorders. Veterans and the public will have 60 days to comment on these proposed rules.

Since these are proposed changes, they will not affect evaluations of any Veteran currently receiving compensation for an impacted disability. Instead, this is an opportunity for Veterans and the public to comment on these proposed changes over the next 60 days. VA will consider the comments received and address them in a subsequent final rule which may make these changes effective.

Some of the proposed changes include modernizing the evaluation criteria for sleep apnea by evaluating it based on the symptoms’ responsiveness to treatment. If symptoms are fully treated by a CPAP machine or other treatment, a Veteran would be rated at 0% and not receive compensation; VA will award progressively higher percentage evaluations based upon how symptomatic the condition remains after treatment. This will bring the rating criteria for sleep apnea more closely in line with the stated purpose of the rating schedule, which is to provide evaluations based upon average impairment of earning capacity.

For respiratory conditions such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), the proposed rules would slightly lower the requirements for a 100% rating. For tinnitus, the proposed changes would recognize that symptom within the Veteran’s broader ailment and provide service-connected compensation for tinnitus through the disease to which it is attributed.

The proposed rules for mental health conditions would increase the minimum disability rating from 0% to 10%. The rule would get rid of a dated part of VASRD that prevents a Veteran from getting a 100% rating for a mental health condition if they are able to work.

VA will ensure Veterans get the compensation they need and deserve, especially when it comes to mental disorders. Under the proposed changes, VA plans to use new evaluation criteria to more accurately capture the different domains of impairment caused by mental disabilities and provide more adequate compensation for financial losses experienced by Veterans with service-connected mental disorders.

Rather than assigning an evaluation based on the number and type of symptoms present, these changes would evaluate mental disorders based on how impactful the disability is across five domains of impairment: Cognition, interpersonal interactions and relationships, task completion, life activities and navigating environments, and self-care.

Veterans, their caregivers and other partners can read the proposed rules for themselves on the Federal Register and are welcome to provide feedback.

  1. 87 FR 8474 – Schedule for Rating Disabilities: Ear, Nose, Throat, and Audiology Disabilities; Special Provisions Regarding Evaluation of Respiratory Conditions; Schedule for Rating Disabilities-Respiratory System – Content Details – 2022-02049.
  2. 87 FR 8498 – Schedule for Rating Disabilities: Mental Disorders – Content Details – 2022-02051.

Once again, there will be no change to any Veteran’s current rating based on these proposed changes. When the proposed changes are finalized, Veterans who currently receive compensation for a service-connected condition can apply for increased compensation. And even if a Veteran’s symptoms no longer warrant the current evaluation they have based on the finalized changes, no reductions shall be made unless an improvement in the Veteran’s disability is shown to have occurred based on the last schedule used to assign their evaluation.

Since September 2017, VA has updated the rating schedule for the following body systems:

By Vantage Point Staff Report

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Published on Feb. 15, 2022

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  1. Mike Mathews March 17, 2022 at 8:26 am

    Here we go again stick it to the vet to save money, or so they can give themselves a pay raise. I think there should be term limits, and caps on what they can be paid and all pay raises should have to be voted on by us. Also anyone on a board that decides anything for the military should have to be a honorably discharged vet. The dead wood is found in our politician’s.
    And I think ever president should be required to have served.

  2. Philip J Newberg March 16, 2022 at 12:55 pm

    My disability is total hearing loss in my right ear, but also severe tinnitus which is a loud ringing in the deaf ear. I have received new hearing aids, but the noise
    in the ear is not compensated nor treated. I also have minor tinnitus in my left ear, so I believe increased compensation is due, now currently at 20%. My case
    was contested at the highest level in Washington by a Judge.

  3. Greg V March 15, 2022 at 8:31 pm

    To sit there and just grandfather vets in for disability changes and take those same benefits away from others suffering from the same things is garbage. It should be all on none. Same across the board. I know there are a lot out there that served behind a desk that are collecting 100% for ptsd or migraines or whatever or some other bum disability. It is sad the VA has to do this to weed out the imposters. In the end, people that really rate a disability are now going to be denied or given less benefits. People are simply out to get what they can where they can. Disability benefits should go to those that are in need. It blows my mind.

    • M dot M March 17, 2022 at 9:46 am

      Plenty of folks served behind a desk but were sexually assaulted, raped, injured in training, or during routine work with heavy loads or mishaps. But hey, I guess you know it all bud. Congrats on that. I hope your high horse serves you well in judging those you don’t know. I get that it’s a travesty that folks leech off the system but there are plenty that you’d mistake for it that truly are dealing with things you’ll never know or understand. That’s between them and God, not some guy on the internet spouting off in the comment section. God bless ya. <3

  4. Jack C March 15, 2022 at 7:10 pm

    By reading this article, my interpretation is if you are receiving VA compensation already for Sleep Apnea, they will not take it away. What is scary, is if you go in for a reevaluation (or try to upgrade) your compensation, it looks like they will do a complete reevaluation on your disabilities, which may lower your compensation. My belief is if your happy with your current percentage, don’t try to fight the system for more, which is unjust. There are a couple of 0 percents, I have currently which could get upgraded, but I’m surely not going to fight the system over it, for the chance of a reduced rating.

  5. German March 15, 2022 at 6:48 pm

    I am a soon to retire service member. I was diagnosed with sleep apnea about 2 years ago and I have to say that I love my CPAP, it is awesome to embrace the feeling of your skull being crushed while you attempt to sleep for four hours… if I’m lucky! Who comes up with these crazy ideas? Do what you do VA, regardless of any comments on this matter we all know that the decision has already been made!

  6. Daniel Mullin March 15, 2022 at 4:38 pm

    The welfare system is alive and strong but the VA is trying to undercut veterans who worked to serve their country. Changing ratings of those already evaluated is criminal, these issues are still being treated every day, and if better treatment comes along, veterans should be first in line, not punished because of them. How long have veterans waited for the VA to better treat them?
    Travel pay is another thing pulled out from us. I have a local clinic that can perform small tasks but anything beyond that is treated at a remote hospital. On the basis that there is a closer clinic means funds are denied; the VA doesn’t even look into the availability of certain doctors’ ability to treat, they are not all at the same office!!!
    Maybe I should apply for welfare, that system always doles out money to the least deserving.

  7. Bob B March 15, 2022 at 3:06 pm

    This is extremely Sad. It does not effect my rating of 100. But living with tinnitus has been far worse than living with my hearing loss. It causes a lot of sleepless night as the ringing in my ears I feel sometimes is driving me crazy. The whole point of the VA is to take care of veterans. Not minimize there issues. As far as sleep apnea is concerned, i to suffer from sleep apnea. I do not have it listed as service connected but could easily of piled out as being secondary to gerd associated with a hiatal hernia that developed in while serving in Alaska in the late 80s. I wear a cpap. between brokes seals and air escaping at night to a sore nose from the nasal form of the devise my nights are not filled with lots of rest. I understand the Veterans are not the only individuals that suffer from these conditions but when they are service connected the are both real struggles. Shame on you VA.

  8. Mike March 15, 2022 at 2:53 pm

    ANY recommendations that effectively says that ANY condition is “cured” either because of a medical device or medication is…in a word… Bunk!
    If one has any medical condition, it is NOT ‘cured’ by a device or medication, it is merely TREATED. The fact that any condition, be it Sleep Apnea or PTSD, Depression ie; mental, is treated shouldn’t be a qualification as a zero (0)% rating.

    For the VA to suggest that, implies that they are abdicating their responsibility to compensate and very likely treat, the people who have given parts of themselves in Service to this Nation.
    In fact, that a person is even evaluated for said conditions, should automatically qualify them as suffering from the condition, even if they are “rated” at the lowest level.

    As many comments have noted, there are good and bad facilities that we veterans have to avail ourselves. Other areas don’t even have a local one, but have to either travel a distance or use what’s available to the general public.
    Which brings me to this. For those of us who have to use public treatment for any condition, we quickly find our choices limited, if even at all. Why? Because of lack of payment by the VA for said services. If anything needs fixing, that does. I have neurological problems that the local facility isn’t able to treat (no one on staff qualified). I’ve had a number of outside, very highly rated doctors who start in the VA network but quickly quit it again for, as I said, lack of payment or overly long wait times to get payment.

    Instead of offering considerations to make changes that in effect, will change a veterans rating to zero, why don’t you offer something that will actually FIX what is already working to some extent.
    Anything that suggests that a veterans current rating be lowered, is as they say, a non-starter. There needs to be a “grand-father” clause for those already rated, noting that an evaluation can only go UP, not down.
    I hope mine and other comments are actually taken into consideration, with changes made appropriately (sadly, I and many others fear that we will be ignored/pushed aside, for what are seen as ‘cost cutting’ measures instead of actual measures for veteran treatment)
    Thank you for your time.

  9. Rodney March 15, 2022 at 2:32 pm

    Sounds like it’s time to start posting this to the social sites where they can’t just remove them, we can post on here all day but who all will actually see these comments besides vets. Everyone needs to copy and past there comments on all the social media sites, not just the veteran facebook pages etc. create stories, blogs/vlogs whatever to all other social media sites, heck even send this out to your local news media outlets, they love to run stories on vets getting the shaft or mistreated, that will lite a match for all to see and add even more voices. I like the VA and don’t want to necessarily just blame them, this stuff comes from the top, and those are the people we need to go after. I have had a CPAP for years and still don’t have or receive benefits for sleep apnea, wonder why that is. There are some real crooked people somewhere still trying to line there own pockets with more money just by stiff arming us at the bottom, Greed is the real disease.

    • C A March 17, 2022 at 6:05 am

      Your right! We ALL must spread the word of this ludicrous proposal.

      I have been posting and sharing as much as possible too.

  10. J March 15, 2022 at 2:03 pm

    This is so sad!!, I know the struggle of sleeping with a CPAP, there are times to where I wake in the middle of my sleep scratching at my face thinking someone is trying to suffocate those of part of my nightmares, but this is not right, they are really bending over veterans and making us take it with no lube, this is the country whom we sacrifice ourselves and families for. I just don’t understand, we veterans have to jump through all kind of hoops just to try and get what is owe to us, while they hand out all kind of free money to the freeloaders. Just wait until you try and file for your SSDI, they are just as worst. I don’t know about the rest of the veterans, but I am sick and tired of this s*%t. Like someone said in their comment, its easy for these Politicians, because I don’t think any of them ever served or even got family that served for that matter. Maybe all of us veterans need to come together somehow.

  11. Carlos Jay March 15, 2022 at 1:54 pm

    Sleep apnea…Ditto what just about everyone said regarding the lunacy of the proposal. You just know they’ll be hunting for current recipients to re-evaluate and take away disability benefits.

    If they’re going to come for disability benefits currently being paid to people with ailments they claim get “better,” I expect to be allowed to be re-evaluated for the ruptured disc in my back that was determined to be service related, but got me 0% because I didn’t have a history of chronic pain, i.e. going to the doctor every time I had a twinge. Well, decades later, it’s really starting to cause issues – Pain and nerve.

    • Nikoles Rosa March 16, 2022 at 2:25 am

      The fact that someone has to wear something the rest of their lives should be compensated not rated 0%. There are people dying with sleep apnea, yes the cpap helps but still veteran has to wear it everytime they sleep.

  12. Julio González March 15, 2022 at 11:44 am

    Dozens of fellow veterans died in hospitals waiting for appointments. Director of those VA hospitals were cooking their books to make a lot more money in bonuses., those are the people that needs to have their pay cut. Politicians want to take everything from the Veteran.

    I have been using a CPAP machine for many years. Right now I have a Phillips CPAP machine that have a recall but the VA are telling me that it might take a year before I can get my new CPAP machine. Instead of messing with our compensation they should be making sure that we get the equipment that we need in order to help our health in a timely matter. Leave our pensions alone. Like someone mention these people with this proposals probably never served.

  13. Michael J Henry March 14, 2022 at 5:22 pm

    How about they let us know WHO has presented these changes instead of that person hiding behind a door. Let’s get into their background and find out if they have ever served. I bet you they have nothing but a political background. I bet they were appointed to a position so voting them out would not happen. Please give their name and position so they can be contacted directly. I bet you this goes unanswered.

  14. AR VA March 14, 2022 at 12:06 pm

    I have been dealing with tinnitus for many years since my service though I don’t have any hearing loss, my life is miserable since I have to deal with this noise every day, It is shame if this proposal goes into effect and tinnitus would be considered as a zero

    • John March 15, 2022 at 3:56 pm

      same here,,, let the person making these changes deal with what we have all day long and night.

  15. Robert March 13, 2022 at 7:47 pm

    No changes for hearing loss. I have pointed out the biases in the hearing charts which favor the Maryland verbalization vs. the pure tone test. It skews the numbers to the right and down away from the best point estimate. I have proposed an updated chart which equalizes both tests having equal value. I suggested that if a veteran has a hearing disability (3.385) but does not meet the current charts values which means a 0% rating and has to wear hearing aids to function then a 10% rating for hearing loss to be granted (functional impairment & functional loss). Saying there is no “noise notch” is a bunch of pooh. There are studies showing it is related to exposure, showing that normal hearing loss from aging (Presbycusis) normally starts around 65-years of age does not jive with the VA is proposing. I have pulled all of my hearing tests for the past 44-years and the graph does not look like the normal hearing loss graphs from aging that I have found. The 2000Hz, 3000Hz, and 4000Hz range all dropped faster in the 20+ years of service then the next 18-years after retirement. I think that the VA is blowing more smoke up veteran’s butts with these proposals. They are looking at ways to shut down benefits to vets! This is our price we pay.

  16. Jim Stauffacher March 13, 2022 at 1:36 am

    0% for SA?? What a joke. It’s not cured by a CPAP, possibly dead with out it. Too me it is bothersome, awkward, cumbersome and annoying trying to sleep with that mask pressing in your face, not to mention the hose that limits mobility. I have a hard time getting a mask to fit my face proper. Tried 5 before I could get a good seal. So me would cut my nose and still wouldn’t get a good seal. Nose pillows were very painful because of my rhinitis. Being an older vet, I can’t sleep the whole night with out a toilet break. Mask on/off cycle in a drowsy state is definitely fun. I don’t sleep nearly enough, because I’ll wake up and my face hurts to much from the CPAP, I just get up. That make me tired most of the day. So the VA figures the CPAP eliminates compensation as well as any other ailment that medications are used to effect. Have they forgot or choose to forget the time and effort along with the expense of cleaning and maintaining and purchasing filters, water compartments, masks, hoses and distilled water the CPAP machine requires. The masks and hoses also need cleaning apparatus and cleaning/ disinfectant solutions. In regards to medications controlling a condition, have you ever read the side effects of most of them.
    The VA pays for scars that are covered by clothes. I embarrassed to go out in public with the permanent intentions on my face.
    I am very disappointed with the VA trying to make the proposed changes. Not just SA, medications that control a condition will warrant a 0% decision. Very, very dissatisfied.

  17. John Davidson March 12, 2022 at 11:00 am

    Do not make the proposed changes. This only hurts Veterans. The VA is trying to saving money by taking it away from Veterans. These changes are shameful. The VA should be a shame of themselves by trying to change the disability rating schedule for Tinnitus, Sleep apnea, and Mental Health. All they are trying to do is hurt Veterans and take away their benefits! If it wasn’t already hard enough to get a fair treatment for a claim. Don’t do this to your veterans! Everyone should call and write your Senator and Congressman to get them to stop these changes! And to instead change out the people running the VA!

  18. Delroy Ross March 12, 2022 at 9:10 am

    Wow this is crazy concerning Sleep Apnea!! You mean to tell me the CPAP machine will correct all your issues!! Someone for be ashamed to even propose such a resolution!! Sounds like another way to cut back on giving benefits, it’s hard enough to get ratings for service connected issues and when you look at the scale for pay that’s another issue how can a person survive. Our government has all kinds of programs giving out free money but when it comes to veterans it’s a fight for everything!! I can see why so many now are getting lawyers to help with filling claims.

  19. Moe March 12, 2022 at 2:27 am

    Anybody with sleep Apnea knows the pain of having to use a CPAP machine, which it is only good if you sleep on your back, never move, and have the perfect face in order to ensure a perfect seal and their is no air seeping out of the mask (full mask or under the nose cannula). The rest of us spend the entire night being waken up whenever we move and yank on the hose, mask moves to the side air starts leaking waking you and your wife up. Or, sometimes the great dry throat sensation in the morning because your mouth was open and the air that went through your nose all night was just traveling through your sinuses, throat, and right back out the mouth. CPAP in not a cure,

    I will always have sleep Apnea, and despite me trying to exercise in order to maintain a weight to help control it, every year that passes my muscle-skeletal injuries make this harder and more painful. Soon, I know that despite my best efforts, I will gain weight, which will make my Apnea worst and will start affecting my cardiovascular system.

    Whoever is proposing this change, most likely have not enjoyed the great pleasure of living with a CPAP. This “cure” not only is an inconvenient life keeping device but it adds stress in other aspects of your every day life. Ask any spouse that has to sleep next to a person with a CPAP every night.

    Its bad enough that for me to get seen at a VA facility I have to wait 6-9 months, and God forbid that for some reason they cancel on you, there goes another 3 months for your next appointment. The only thing I have gotten from the VA, besides long wait times, are CPAP consumables, a pair of glasses, and two dental cleanings.

    I am lucky to have the ability to pay for health care so that I can get all my VA disabilities, and anything else on the private sector. I dont have to wait months, they work with my schedule, I get the needed medical referrals and the provider will give options versus a no, we cant pay for that.

    I truly am sorry for those Veterans, and their families, who sacrificed and unfortunately have to rely solely on the VA for their medical care. It should not be this way.

    There are good people that work in the VA facilities, with great intentions, and who only would like to proudly care for our veterans but are road blocked by a broken system and leadership that is looking to cut cost by squeezing our veterans out of there deserved VA entitlement.

    Not all of us are retired Generals drawing a 10K retirement check and many things are not as cut and dry. Like many other mentioned before on their comments, so with that logic, a Veteran who lack kidney functions as a result of his/fer service doesn’t need to be compensated because they can get dialysis 2 times a week. Are the people actually hearing themselves?

    • BookieX March 14, 2022 at 12:41 pm

      Mor you have said a mouth full. The workers are not all bad there are a few great men and women who works for the V.A. Regional Offices. I remember when my dad was living and I use to take him to his appointments. The doctors where the ones who was rating the patients, they were the ones who closely watched and treated the patients. Therefore they knew the abilities each on had or the needs of the patients. The VA did away with that rating because they felt the doctors were getting to close to the patient. Well they don’t think the Regional worker find was to get close to the vet. As the older folks would say there more than one way to skin a cat. The bottom line is the government is trying to not pay out to veterans who have sacrificed the life time and energy to stand by our country. I truly feel no vet should have to fight their government to get paid. My belief is that any man or woman who was drafted, signed up or was ordered by a judge should get full benefits from the VA that would include dental, mental, and anything else that falls under A-Z. Because when you went in th basic training was hard enough that alone gave you mental issues, going through all the up and downs, moving from one place to another because your rank changed is mental some have not been stable for as long as four years at a time that’s mental all by itself you have to continue to up root your family or yourself if your single. I just wanted to say Moe everything you said I cold heartedly agree

  20. Billy March 11, 2022 at 12:08 pm

    I’m still fighting after 35 plus years after getting injured on the aircraft carrier during a drill, and I was shoved down the flight of steel steps, tearing up my knees and hitting my head. So, when I was discharged with all the medical records from the aircraft carrier, the physical therapy at the airforce base, and the base hospital, James Haley refused to do a head check and barely did anything within the hour exam back in ’86. But the result was a denial and then they refused me medical for the next 23 years because the VA sent the documents that I would had have the opportunity to appeal within a year to a address where I lived when I went to High School, not where I was living because I was receiving documents from the VA for all those years around the same dates they se t out the other documents, so they knew where I lived but the injury became permanent, I went through and still am going through bought of depression and if it wasn’t for my wife I would have been dead 3 times over due to the severe pain I am induring and dealing with the VA. They don’t give a damn about us and I know that first hand. Because 2 people told me I should either give up it would be just 1 less number in the system or that I would be better off dead and she hung upon me. I mailed my Honorable Discharge Document to the White House and not 1 response as if I was expecting any. So they don’t care, they just want toscrew as many people as possible. And they wonde why the suicide rate is so high with the Vets. It’s because there are not being taking care of, listen too or just belived even with physical proof.

    • Jani March 11, 2022 at 4:13 pm

      This is for all, my husband is a disabled Vietnam vet and had been treated very well by the VA. Maybe the complaining needs to end and thankfulness needs to start. We all have many many things to be thankful for in America.

    • Jani March 11, 2022 at 4:50 pm

      This comment is for all , my husband is disabled Vietnam vet and had been treated well by th VA. I would suggest thankfulness or constantly complaining . We all have many many reasons to be thankful in America!

      • BookieX March 14, 2022 at 12:57 pm

        Jani maybe your husband didn’t have to go through what others are going through. Let him speak to the vets who are going through hard times trying to get their benefits. May you and your hi could be a platform to help and not criticize it who are voicing their concerns and opinions, it’s people like you who makes a difference in the life of others. You don’t know the next man/woman struggle. Like I said maybe your husband didn’t have a hard time getting his benefits like some os. My dad went to his grave getting ONLY 50% he was bitten by a rattle snake while in the woods, he was shot while in the desert by the enemy never gotten a Purple Heart they thought it to be friendly fire oh well he gotten shot that’s the point not just him but a few others. Sometimes you have to wonder was it the color of their skin that played a part on the fact they were not grant any justice. I’m going to stop with that and just maybe if your pleased with what your husband is getting you have no need to be on this site. And for the record my dad may have not gotten all he deserved but I’m surely getting mine.

    • Jani March 11, 2022 at 5:17 pm

      Time for less complaining and more thankfulness! Good grief people!!!

      • Nikoles Rosa March 16, 2022 at 2:41 am

        The complaint is that they are trying to take away compensation for a life changing illness stating it is “treated” and give a 0% rating for it, while the vet has to wear a machine which if comes off or doesnt seal can lead to death, brain damage, and other health conditions. I am grateful for some treatment but i was told someone wearing a machine shouldn’t be compensated more than someone who lost a limb. Well dealing with a loss of a limb doesnt kill you, it doesnt make it hard for you to function throughout the day if you dont get a good seal or have the risk of dying in your sleep. You dont have to sleep in one way or the other, if anything they should be equal due to having to use an external device to function normally.

      • M dot M March 17, 2022 at 9:59 am

        Wow you’re really out of your mind. My father is a vietnam veteran and is treated well……70 percent of the time. I’m an Iraq veteran and I’ve been treated well 80% of the time I’d say. I guess because your husband is treated well you choose to be blind to the suffering of others. You’re assuming people complaining aren’t thankful but I’d say they’re just speaking on a broken system that a lot of veterans fall through the cracks in. But hey, keep your blinders on and keep on judging. Tell others to be thankful but passing judgement on the good ol interwebs. Leave it to god hon, it’s not your business. ;)

  21. C A March 11, 2022 at 9:09 am

    This is shameful!

    Obviously a cost cutting measure.

    Also, has anyone else noticed that comments posted on Federal Register website opposing this are screened and sometimes not even posted?

    I have posted twice strongly opposing this proposal, and nothing was posted.

    Not a conspiracy theorist, but something is not right here…

    • luis March 13, 2022 at 1:42 pm

      Yes! You are correct I posted 3 days ago regarding the Sleep apnea and it removed.


  22. Byron Hudson March 11, 2022 at 8:55 am

    To propose that a CPAP machine “corrects” the disability and the vet should no longer receive compensation is as illogical as saying that an artificial limb corrects the lost limb and the vet shy not be compensated for losing his/her leg. Just ridiculous.

    • John March 12, 2022 at 11:33 am

      I was thinking the exact same thing. CPAP might help with the condition but doesnt fix it.

  23. Jerry David Allison March 11, 2022 at 7:34 am

    It would be nice to get rerated without a hassle. 50% was the standard Mental Disorders rating. I was denied Cancer Claim and Unemployability but looks like I would get 100% under the new system for mental impairment. How about an Easy Revaluation?

  24. Ronnie Kelly March 10, 2022 at 8:08 pm

    Be prepared if you complain about a VA Clinic. I offer my letter of complaint to the patient advocate. You will be treated in an identical manner if you complain.

    Today, March 10, 2022, VA Clearlake Clinic, is attempting to set me up again. The strategy is the same. A person who introduced herself as Trina, an employee of Clearlake Clinic for over a year, as she told me, tried to set up an appointment with Westphal at the Clearlake Clinic. Can you believe it? The exact same thing happened. It took Trina three phone calls to set up the appointment.

    The first phone call Trina and I agreed that we would communicate through VA Message. She agreed. I agreed.

    Then a second phone call that contradicted our agreement. Trina ignored my request.

    Then a third phone call. The same thing. Trina ignored our agreement.

    In each phone call I explained to Trina the why.

    Three phone calls to set up an appointment.

    Guess who Trina wanted to set up an appointment with? Westphal.

    I explained that Westphal attempted to criminalized me rather than offer me medical care.

    Then Trina tried to set the appointment with a Nurse Practitioner or whatever the term is. Initially I said no because this Nurse is not trained for PTSD combat veterans. Then I said ok to one or two appointments and if all goes well then I will reconsider. No promises though. Trina agreed. Of course Trina already has exhausted her credibility with me.

    Naturally a Nurse merely goes to Westphal, the MD, for confirmation and approval. I know Westphal fails to understand PTSD because she invented a strategy to criminalize me.

    Now, the overriding guiding principle here is the fact that Westphal is trying to bait me again. Westphal has a strategy to criminalize me. Westphal is using Trina to bait me again.

    I know already what Westphal intends to do. I will report for my appointment. The members of Westphal’s “consensus”, Westphal’s descriptive term for her minions at Clearlake Clinic, will be ready to bait me in the most severe manners of abuse. I will reply of course in a self-defense mode.

    Of course I will not report to Clearlake Clinic for any reason until I feel secure, safe, and protected from Westphal’s abuse and the abuse from her disciples in the Clearlake Clinic. I have some ideas about how to tell the VA employees at the Clearlake Clinic to act toward me to assure me that I am not being baited in order to criminalize. The employees of Clearlake Clinic are a severe threat to me. Each of the members of Westphal’s “consensus” are my enemies. I would be a fool to walk in the Clearlake Clinic among my enemies without a patient advocate there with me. I would prefer a VA detective. Westphal and her minions are prepared to criminalize me. Certainly, the VA has a Program of doing so, since I have recognized this pattern now with Trina’s three phones calls to me today. Trina denied knowing about this incident.

    Now, I did not call Trina a liar. However, I pointed out to Trina that the Clearlake Clinic is a one-room Clinic. It is impossible for Trina not to know of this incident, since everything is in the open at this Clinic.

    Clearlake Clinic is very small. In fact, the employees there have a boondoggle job. Very few patients. So, Westphal and her minions want to protect this boondoggle job. Thus, their animosity toward me is to destroy me. The Clearlake Clinic, actually, should be closed. I am writing both my State Congressional people and my federal Congressional people to report this fact.

    Further, I am researching methods within VA to get Westphal removed and fired. She is unfit to be a VA doctor.

    Summary: I will post this Message to my Clearlake Clinic Team. I understand that Trina then will try to phone me again to set up an appointment. I will repeat my request: When I am assured that I am not being set up to be criminalize, then I will report for my appointment. Trina was professional, and respectful. She even said “yes, sir” to me. I explained that she was the only VA employee at the Clearlake Clinic who has treated me with respect. All others cold-shouldered me, were abrupt, and spoke in clipped responses that told me in no uncertain terms that I was filth to be discarded and silenced.

    Thank you. I hope you are doing well and are happy. I think Spring has sprung, as the older generation liked to say. Uh, wait, I am the older generation now. To add a bit of humor here.


  25. Ronnie Kelly March 10, 2022 at 8:06 pm

    Get prepared combat veterans of any war. When you enter a VA Outpatient Clinic, when you complain about this mess, you will be set up and baited to defend yourself. When you defend yourself, you will be criminalized. You will be reported to the Disciplinary Committee. The Committee then will rule you “threatening”, which means that you will be escorted everywhere when in a Clinic. And all you did was to complain about being abused. I know because my primary care doctor, Westphal, criminalized me. I said that I would be contacting the patient advocate. Westphal then ended the consultation without giving me medical care. Westphal angrily told me that since I contacted the patient advocate, she would not treat me. Leave the Clinic. Of course I left. So, if a combat veteran takes just one of these posts and reads it to anyone in a VA Clinic, be prepared to be criminalized. The VA has a model in place to criminalize any veteran who complains. First, report it to the local police and tell them the combat veteran is “mentally sick”. The Clearlake officer told me this as a fact of his report. Then you will be ostracized from simple human decency in the way the employees will treat you. Then the Disciplinary Committee will rule you as “threatening”. The Clearlake CA Clinic did this to me. So, be prepared.

  26. JS March 10, 2022 at 7:51 pm

    So vets after serving in combat zones for 20 years cannot even claim Tinnitus for exposure to noise? Are you kidding!? The Sleep Apnea BS looks like a way to set precedent in the future on other health issues where medicines and devices are used for treatments. Someone who requires a external machine to breathe at night should be kept right where it is. To try and minimize this is unbelievable. The damage apnea causes to the heart is catastrophic. Also if you watched the news during Covid it was a big deal when a Covid patient had to get put on a Cpap. So don’t try and minimize it. Feels like wiping out tinnitus will deny a lot of vets from getting access to any benefits as veterans from a lot of MOS are working in very loud conditions. From those who work flight lines, engineers to the infantry men. I know a good handful that the only thing they are rated for is tinnitus. Is the govt trying to save money on the back of Vets? Because it feels like they are trying to make up for over spending elsewhere by cutting vets comp. Ya don’t wanna cover us then quit sticking our noses in crap around the world. Especially when we all know the political will to see anything through to victory does not exist. After seeing this proposal there is no way I will ever let my kids serve. I will hate to see what kind of VA they would face.

    • Steve March 11, 2022 at 6:53 pm

      I went to Australia, during Covid last year. Did work for their Border Defense, and during quarantine, they took my cpap away. 2 weeks of embracing the suck.

  27. Steve March 10, 2022 at 7:41 pm

    The way I read this they are trying to lower the cost of compensation.
    They wont touch the ones already receiving the compensation, unless normal rules apply, ie fraud, you got better etc.
    Its frustrating and very stressful dealing with the VA bureaucracy. We have to be strong.. Don’t let it get the best of you..

  28. R2 March 10, 2022 at 6:55 pm

    I served 21 years in the Air Force, and later Army. In the Army, I was an Infantry Officer who had several close calls: my main parachute not opening on my third jump,\; got blown by high winds onto an ambulance parked next to the drop zone, to having been clobbered in the back of the head by tree branches after a helicopter crashed during an air assault exercise. Also, while training in the jungles of Panama in preparation for Viet Nam, I also got stung by hundreds of bees, which caused me to slip and fall off a small cliff, and hit my head on the way down. I got compensation for my back and neck problems but was denied compensation for sleep apnea, which I believe I developed while sleeping on the damp ground during months of jungle training. I also retired with tinnitus problems (I was once a range officer where I had to supervise the line where automatic weapons fire was a daily occurrence) but never sought compensation for them. When I tried to apply for sleep apnea compensation, VA told me I should have applied for sleep apnea compensation when I retired. I retired in 1984, and sleep apnea wasn’t even a term used by the VA medical staff at that time! The VA is adamant that I not be further compensated. I wonder who the desk jockey was who made that decision? And I wonder who the desk jockeys are who are proposing the changes that further degrade the treatment and compensation that
    they so rightly deserve.

  29. Michael J Henry March 10, 2022 at 6:35 pm

    Just another Politician making things harder for Vets. When I finally got out in 1997 there was nothing for us. I walked out of that office and stood by my truck lost and confused. There was no PTSD. There was no help. I went to the Veterans hospital to enroll. They finally agreed to a Desert War Syndrome. It never happened. Just a plastic sheet over a doorway to show it was being worked on. It never was. I put myself in for Mental Issues. Couldn’t sleep. Always pissed off. Started drinking. All that happened was I became a person being interviewed by students. Then they would pay you $10 for each student you agreed to let interview you. I got out of there. Once again zero help. What more can the VA take from us who served. Today isn’t much different. I went to Tomah for help. They put me in a room and forgot about me. Sat in that room for 4 1/2 hours waiting on a Covid test. Then tried to get admitted and they didn’t have a bed for me. It is a 2 1/2 hour drive one way. I had to call my wife at 8:30 pm to come get me. They offered no transportation or any kind of lodging. And to top it off there was no working Kiosk to submit any kind of travel pay. Never go to Tomah VA unless you are ready to die. Even then they will put you on the the street.

  30. Gregory N von Freymann March 10, 2022 at 6:33 pm

    I thank all for your service. I would like to say that the change may be good as far as sleep apnea is concerned. I have been treated with a CPAP and dental device which neither worked based on my Parasomnia. Both devises are pulled out while I sleep and the only option for me would be surgery or live with it. Don’t agree with the rating of 0 as sleep apnea is no joke….good luck vets

  31. OldManchu March 10, 2022 at 6:29 pm

    Wow. And every VA phone number that a veteran calls starts with “If you are having thoughts of suicide……..”

  32. m March 10, 2022 at 5:00 pm

    I want Trump back he took care of us and held everyone in the VA accountable for their jobs. They no longer have to worry about being fired for not doing what they’re payed to. Patient advocacy runs amuck and this discussion of ratings was fixed under his watch. Thanks for not supporting those who served VA.

    • trent cannon March 11, 2022 at 5:23 pm

      trump is a traitor to this country.

  33. Shan March 10, 2022 at 4:39 pm

    In regards to CPAP/sleep Apnea: I’m 19 years in and I have suffered from sleep apnea half my career. I was diagnosed with a mild case in 2010/2014, but only given sleep aids. As I’m older and naturally gained more weight I finally had enough and received treatment a few months ago for severe obstruction.
    I am still waiting for my CPAP delivery. I’m decently fit, but have a natural small airway and large neck that causes me to gasp for air every night.

    Long story short, I believe a possible 0 % for this legit condition is a slap in the face. I cannot get back the the years I’ve had to “shut up and color” and deal with this. It’s a proven fact that over time the lack of oxygen and a good night’s rest mixed in with the anxiety and stress of military life degrades all aspects of health. My sleep study results helped my breathing but I still woke up multiple times and did not get 100% proper rest.

    In conclusion, I’ve aged and have sacrificed my best years of life for my country that I’ll never get back. For new or soon to be claiming veterans to worry about this SHOULD NOT be a topic, but here we are.

  34. Bill March 10, 2022 at 4:26 pm

    Before being diagnosed with severe obstructive sleep apnea and using a CPAP machine I would stop breathing roughly 39 times a night and for approximately 45 seconds during some periods. I would wake up gasping for air. My wife lived with the loud snoring for 20 years before I finally got evaluated. She would wake me up sometimes for the snoring or because I was choking. I would fall a sleep driving, watching TV, working at a computer etc…. There are numerous other health issues that arise from sleep apnea. I still snore and gasp for air if I fall asleep with out a CPAP. I have to take it everywhere I go that I will be sleeping overnight. That machine has improved my sleep but I still get drowsy during the day. Using a CPAP has not cured my severe obstructive sleep apnea it has managed it. The CPAP is required for me to. live a healthier life. Without it my health would deteriorate much faster. I didn’t have sleep apnea when I joined the Navy or bad knees, feet, shoulder, and back. This is all happening by doing my job for 29 years running the steel decks and up and down vertical ladders on carriers for 21 years and counting. The VA should not exist to save money but to take care of all the veterans that have faithfully and honorably served this country. With all the wasteful spending in our government I am sure the right thing to do is find the funds to compensate the men and women who have sacrificed so much in defense of our country and all of her citizens.

    • Will March 15, 2022 at 11:50 am

      Bill, couldn’t be more correct with your response, I also spent years on a carrier and was denied any help with sleep apnea while serving, as a result went without sleep for days suffered physical pain on top of mental trauma and now they want to save money by saying this cpap fixes everything, it doesn’t. THAT IS,…. I T D O E S N O T. It barely makes it tolerable as I write this, I have not slept through the night in weeks; I have not been able to work for years due to my disabilities and I am NOT rated at 100%. Falling asleep while driving is one of the biggest problems but make no mistake it is not even the start of how this effects the everyday things people who dont have this disease take for granted, fine motorskills, cognitive response just to name a few, do they even think about how that might affect
      a mechanic, my ability to shine as a contributing member of society has been reduced to nothing more than a bumbling idoit. This proposal threateans my entire rating, as a repayment having done nothing more than faithfully executing my duteis with honor, they want to reduce my rating; mark my words they are going to put more honorable vets on the street.

  35. Javier Laos March 10, 2022 at 4:24 pm

    This is wrong, and a way of cheating vets out of their compensation. All it’s doing is taking monetary benefits away from vets.
    Most veterans loose time and money by going to their appointments. Compensations help veterans undergo through their treatments without loosing money…

  36. Rhian March 10, 2022 at 2:52 pm

    Where do I start? When VA finally granted compensation for tinnitus – after many years of ‘battle’ – I was so relieved and thankful. Receiving an email from VA regarding changes to the regs and reading about ‘proposed’ changes (Federal Register) probably made my blood pressure increase. My heart goes out to all the good people, V-E-T-E-R-A-N-S, who are struggling and will likely receive a new VA rating of 0%.

    • Anthony March 10, 2022 at 4:17 pm

      Definitely! I’ve had to deal with this CPAP for decades. My event triggered from sleep deprivation in boot camp. I struggled to wake up and function normally after basic.

      Decades of waking up with the face mask shoved sideways on my face and tangled in the hose.

      Decades of having a stuffy nose and rendering the CPAP useless.

      Decades of waking up with a dry throat or a bloody nose.

      Decades of lugging a machine while traveling which costs as extra baggage at the airport now.

      Decades of the lack of snuggling with the Mrs because the air is blowing in her face or the hose is too short.

      Decades of pure agony having to wear a machine to sleep. Nobody likes wearing the machine!

      These proposals are ridiculous. If it passes, nobody will want to wear the mask anymore. They’ll end up dying prematurely from high blood pressure, heart attach, or stroke due to no REM.

      I gotta get off this machine. It sounds like it’s time for surgery.

    • Dennis McCarthy March 11, 2022 at 6:06 am

      every time they change the system for veterans they’re taking stuff away under their new criteria that they say will help you. The American people are very generous to politicians are thieves they take the people’s money you put it in their pockets don’t look at that man behind the curtain.

  37. Scott March 10, 2022 at 2:27 pm

    Speaking as someone who has a mental health disorder, if you look at the proposed evaluation form this will greatly benefit those of us with these mental health disorders. Ratings criteria seem like they should be much easier to evaluate and result in less appeals. I would like to see implementation of a program for people who have these disorders when they are discharged. I personally did not find out about these programs until I was in my 50’s even though my discharge paperwork said I should have been referred at that time.

    • Louis R Testa March 11, 2022 at 10:17 am

      79 years old, In VA system since 01/0501964. Not aging well. Depend completely on care by VA. Not able to subsides income. In process of having present rated reviewed. Long process. VA works on their own schedule. I have no answers.

  38. Terry Albright March 10, 2022 at 2:24 pm

    Using a CPAP manages sleep apnea. It does not cure it. Taking medications manages my Type 2 diabetes and my cornary artery disease. It does not cure them.

    The CPAP and taking medications fulfill the same purpose. They both manage a condition and must be used daily. Neither deserve a 0% rating

    • Kimberly March 10, 2022 at 2:55 pm

      Totally agree.

      • darrel riggan March 10, 2022 at 7:37 pm

        I have a CPAP and I have use it daily. If I fail to use my CPAP, I go back to having 4-5 hours of broken sleep and it also affects my mental health as well my personal relationship don’t think this should have a 0% rating.

    • Argenis March 10, 2022 at 3:08 pm

      Terry, I was about to comment on this issue as well. CPAP is a treatment for the issue not a permanent fix. VA is always looking for ways to save money.

      • luis March 10, 2022 at 4:33 pm

        If anything Sleep anea with use of CPAP should be rated higher. Plenty of studies show that sleep apnea declines health significantly. CPAP is medication which helps, what’s next VA going to take prosthesis away from veterans and give them a 0% rating for those who lost there limbs. VA don’t care.

    • Donmonic S. March 10, 2022 at 4:05 pm

      I can’t believe that the VA would even think about making changes to sleep apnea. I didn’t have it now I have to wear this mask every night because I could stop breathing in my sleep! I been in combat for 30 months in Iraq sleeping in some of the worse places you could imagine. It’s sickening how I may get treated when I get out in less than 6 months once I retire after 21 years of service. I was 17 when I joined and now that I’m 38 I have hard time getting out of bed or just going to work because of this mask hugging my face all night. Absolute and borderline insanity for even proposing this change!

  39. Chris March 10, 2022 at 2:14 pm

    I can’t begin to even fathom this. I have struggled with sleep issues for years especially after being on a ship and the inability to have good sleep ever put to sea. My wife would always wake me up because I would be choking in my sleep or snoring so obnoxiously, and in the mornings and throughout the days would just be debilitating with always being tired, out of it, memory issues and more. I can only imagine how many more issues are going to arise from my sleep apnea. This is very disheartening and disappointing. It doesn’t seem as if the VA cares about veterans.

    • Teresa Acred March 10, 2022 at 5:40 pm

      It said that the veterans are out to protect the veterans and help them and their families. From what I’ve read this is not going to help the vets. I myself am a widow of 100% disabled vet in the compensation I received after he passed is not even a third of what he was getting and I don’t see how they expect families where the vet has passed to be able to support themselves. I feel the compensation for the widows of the vets or the widowers of the vets should be compensated more than what they have in the past they should at least be compensated at least half of what their disability is if it’s 100% or even if it’s not 100%. With the way inflation is nowadays there’s no way anybody could live by themselves or even support a widow and children on what the compensation is. This is something that seriously needs to be looked at. Especially when the statements made that the veterans take care of their own and they’re not.

  40. ND Pena March 10, 2022 at 1:55 pm

    I read the previous email with the proposal. There are things being people that are design to lower or take away a vets compensation. I myself have three separate permanent conditions in my back alone that are debilitating me (and will get much worse in time). I don’t know who made these proposals, but it clearly shows that they don’t have the best interest of the vets. This is the worst part of being in the military. They get you, break you and then poorly make you whole again.

    • Brandon March 10, 2022 at 6:09 pm

      So what happens if my sleep apnea claim is still in process and hasn’t been decided by the time these obscene changes go into effect? Will I be rated on current standards since my packet has been submitted??

  41. Mike March 10, 2022 at 1:55 pm

    For many veterans sleep apnea is a direct result of our service. While this proposal appears to shield downgrades to existing VA ratings it does nothing for those of us still currently serving. After 30 years in the military and few years still left to go, the VA finds a way to push me closer to the door. I have been on a CPAP for 4+ years as a direct result of the locations in which I have served and other factors. The fact that I have to carry around a CPAP even when on vacation means it is a disability. If I have to use something every night, then it is treating symptoms, not resolving the problem. The use of this machine comes at a cost to myself and my wife who has to put up with the noise and discomfort. It is not a nice to have device, it is a must have device. To use the machine correctly I have to sleep on my back which causes additional discomfort, but it is a tradeoff. Not to mention the sinus infections and more.


    • John March 10, 2022 at 5:29 pm

      I strongly agree, I have been living with sleep apnea for 5 years. I have to carry that damn machine with me everywhere I go. I have some good nights and some bad nights. I have to go buy gallons of distilled water constantly. I am always spilling a little bit of it and ruining my furniture from the everyday refills. My wife moved to the other side the bed because the damn mask blows out cold air in her face. After a year of that and me sleeping like Darth Vader, our sex life went out the window. She said she still loves me but just can’t find me attractive when I am wearing that thing. Granted the mask helps and I don’t walk around in a daze anymore, but many nights, it just doesn’t work well, I roll over and break the seal or something, but I get enough sleep to make it work. The worst is in the winter when the hvac is heating the house and the air is very dry. I have tried the humidity on auto and on 8, the highest number, but I still wake up in the middle of the night because my throat and sinuses are completely dry and of course that gives me a sinus headache. Yes, the machine shows that it ran all night, and I got a good score that time, but I still woke up with dry air being blown down my throat. the machine doesn’t show that I wake up with a sinus headache from all the dryness. Not to mention the embarrassment of having to pull that thing out whenever I visit friends and family, they look at me with pity. Living with a machine is a disability, having to drag the machine around with you every time you take an overnight trip is a disability, and 3 days of the week when the mask seal breaks or something else goes wrong and you wake up feeling like crap is a disability. Imagine dating again guys, you have a nice night with the girl and then you drag out you CPAP machine and start setting it up, yah, she will think she found a winner.

      • John March 10, 2022 at 5:39 pm

        Forgot to mention, I don’t get to go camping for days anymore, no electricity for my CPAP. I you find yourself in a natural disaster and the power goes out, yah, you are at a disadvantage immediately. Forget going anywhere that don’t have electricity. I have to travel to Asia to attend a wedding. I didn’t realize that it was held at one of these wildlife resorts in the jungle, no electricity. I felt like crap for 3 days. not to mention the one time I found myself sprinting through the airport because I forgot my damn CPAP at the check-in counter.

        Instead of trying to take away, they should be offering everyone 2 machines, a Fullsize for the house and a travel size for overnight trips. currently, they only offer the big one. I recently bought myself a travel size and it doubles as my backup.

    • Mike March 10, 2022 at 6:53 pm

      I totally agree with the mental changes. Veterans will be fairly rated. And l thank the group that came with the proposal

    • JS March 10, 2022 at 7:54 pm

      I contacted everyone but Santa Clause. If this proposal passes I will not be giving one more dime to a vet organization. If they can’t stop this they can’t stop anything.

  42. Christopher Adkinson March 10, 2022 at 1:55 pm


    Please remember to Post comments on the Federal Register websites as well from the link in article

    Its the only way our voices will be heard and recorded.

    Also, Contact your congressman, the VFW action Corps, DAV, etc…

    Truly shameful, that the VA would propose this.

  43. Marcus Snow Ret March 10, 2022 at 1:41 pm

    I live with a CPAP. With other disabilities. If you didn’t see this coming your blind. Our President hates the Military. Look at his record. He was the only senator that stop money for the withdrawal from Vietnam. His withdrawal we just had. Then I got to look at all the stuff in between. LOL. I haven’t claimed anything for PTSD or my CPAP. Don’t plan to until another administration come in.

    • sucker and a fool March 10, 2022 at 2:31 pm

      Apparently you missed the part where it says this overhaul began in 2018, you know, during the last administration. Many of you will never know what evil was heading the VBA in that time period and what the last USB’s “fiscal” plans were. You better file now. Another administration like the last one will wipe away compensation entirely.

      • Jer March 10, 2022 at 7:35 pm

        Began in 2018, that does not mean this was added then and not recently‍♂️. If that was added then believe me we would have heard about it. They were working on dental, gynecology and other things back then. How’s Biden leadership doing these days? Things better on the world stage? Things more affordable for the poor now? Just for the hell of it let’s say this proposal was introduced in 2018 by Trump, why does Biden not reverse it like he did everything else Trump did? What a time to reduce some bennies and take others off the list all together. Vets retiring after 20 year of service fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq. Coming back to civilian life in a chaos with high inflation and housing prices. Also what signal does it send to those thinking about joining in these turbulent times? Or those who may eventually have to go fight Bidens war because he could not project strength to stop it?

  44. Jason Evans March 10, 2022 at 1:33 pm

    Am I reading this wrong or did I get confused. It seems that a lot of us are upset and these proposals, though I dont see the issue. It seems that the idea is to protect our disabilities and get rid of old rules that hurt us. Am I reading it wrong? I get 100 percent for MDD, Chronic Anxiety, PTSD, Physical trama, etc and Im getting reevaluated this year (its been since 2019 I think when they did it last). I dont feel attacked, I feel like Im getting help. Am I just confused about something?

    • Joey March 10, 2022 at 2:37 pm

      It seems if you’re able to work and function in society, the compensation or rating you receive will go to 0%. Depending on the disability. That’s the way I read it. So the example given is the CPAP. If the CPAP helps with your sleep apnea, your sleep apnea rating goes to 0%.

  45. PK March 10, 2022 at 1:32 pm

    Having to use a machine to be normal should be compensable above 0%. It’s no different than medicine. Taking a person down to 0% is not right. You lost the use of being able to have a normal sleep pattern without the use of a machine on your face.

    • Felix Diaz March 10, 2022 at 1:45 pm

      Strongly concur with you. The mask and tubes are a nuissance.

    • Terry Albright March 10, 2022 at 2:52 pm

      Having to wear a CPAP is not a walk in the park. It manages my service connected sleep apnea for which I am grateful. It is life changing for a number of reasons that may not be evident to those who do not need it. It affects my wife’s sleep from the noise it makes. It must be connected and disconnected numerous times a night. It must be available EVERY night no matter where you are. It is no different than the multiple medications I must take every day and night as a 80% disabled vet. It should never deserve a 0% rating. My service and the exposure to Agent Orange forever change my life. The proposal to reduce the mandatory use of a CPAP to 0% is a stab in the back to vets like me who went over 50 years with NO compensation at all.

      • Gulbert l Pagan S/Sgt March 11, 2022 at 8:52 am

        Gods day to you all I have all can happen to us we all stap up wean the good call and we did it.thay don’t know what we tak care of us all

  46. John Griffith March 10, 2022 at 1:30 pm

    From my own experience fighting for compensation for service-connected disabilities was like a war with the Dept. of Veteran’s Affairs. I spent 6.5 long years fighting for the compensation and care that I needed, deserved and earned. Most veterans don’t have the time, money and resources to fight these ongoing lengthy battles for disability compensation. VA is not your friend. They will fight hook, tooth and nail to prevent you from receiving your hard-earned disability benefits, that were paid for with your blood, sweat and tears. I suspect that most disabled veterans will give up the fight after receiving their first or second formal denial decision in the mail. Many veterans die while waiting for these decisions and lengthy appeals. My own father, a WWII and Korean War combat veteran was one of them. He lived with severe PTSD throughout his life. This condition destroyed his marriages, family life and careers. He was finally awarded a service-connected disability rating for PTSD a few months after he died at age 79. Does anyone still wonder why so many veterans take their own lives? I am very suspicious of these new changes to the VA disability rating schedule or anything else this administration has to offer veterans. You should be, too!

    • John Griffith March 15, 2022 at 1:20 pm

      I failed to mention that my father died from injuries sustained during a routine surgery at a VA medical center, because he was given some form of anti-clotting agent made by Bayer Pharmaceuticals that had been killing patients for many years. He spent nearly a year in this same VA medical center trying to recover from this surgery and required kidney dialysis for the remainder of his life, due to the staph infection antibiotic drugs he was given immediately following this procedure that permanently destroyed both of his kidneys. He suffered a long and painful death at the hands of the VA. I neglected to include this closing statement in my previous post.

  47. James N. Busler March 10, 2022 at 1:29 pm

    I think that any compensation a veteran is receiving for any of the purposed changes to disability ratings should be grandfathered.

    • Allison M. March 11, 2022 at 8:35 am

      It will be, that is how the VA has generally handled all rating changes, the only time would be if it results in an increase to your rating so then you will recieve more, but you 99% of the time ( I cant say for the 1% cause who knows regulations have changes all the time) you will not be lowered because of a propsed rating change, and thats also what the VA appeal hearings are for as far as if you ever disagree with a rating, they tend to go off of the ratings for when you put in your initial claim. So if thats higher than current propsed regulations are than you can likely get the higher.

  48. R. Azotea March 10, 2022 at 1:17 pm

    Sleep Apnea leads to so many other health issues, such as COPD which is a killer in itself. Apparently, the VA is doing it’s best to deny Veterans compensations for fight in wars for the past 20 years; of course Veterans are going to develop sleep and mental health matters. Going to see the suicide rate go up, if these changes occurs.

    • Gary March 10, 2022 at 2:24 pm

      you can probably bank on that unfortunately.

  49. James Robert Brink March 10, 2022 at 1:10 pm

    Since 2000 I was diagnosed for sleep apnea and received my first CPAP machine and associated supplies. In 2004 I retired from active duty and continue to receive my medical supplies from the VA. Since 2000 I have gone through 5 different CPAP machines and various other CPAP supplies. If the VA changes the VASRD I will lose my supplier for my CPAP and associated supplies. If sleep apnea disease is rendered “fixed” and my disability rating is now 0, then I essentially lose all my medical benefits via the VA and I will have to pay out of my pocket for the CPAP machine and supplies. As a 30 year veteran I find these VA changes to be ridiculous!

  50. L. Ramirez March 10, 2022 at 1:04 pm

    I just forwarded the article to my Congressman and urged him to put a stop to this cruel attempt to further defund disabled Veterans. Recall that Congress, in a bipartisan vote just approved billions of dollars to save Ukraine. What about all the active duty service women and men presently deployed in the former EASTERN EUROPEAN countries, what will happen to them when they return to civilian life? Will VA and Congress again attempt to cut their disability ratings to save a dollar? Please forward this article to your member of Congress and demand VA stop this nonsense.

  51. Alexandra Fleming March 10, 2022 at 12:23 pm

    This honestly makes me sick and I will be so mad if they take my compensation away. The changes for mental health is just sad.

    • Mark March 10, 2022 at 12:31 pm

      Does the VA realize how much life insurance is with sleep apnea??? This proposal is OUTRAGEOUS!

    • marlene johnson March 10, 2022 at 12:39 pm

      Y’all did not read the entire article. If you’re already receiving a percentage for the disability, they are not going to take it away.

      Once again, there will be no change to any Veteran’s current rating based on these proposed changes.

      • Bob Jenkins March 10, 2022 at 1:32 pm

        I believe you are incorrect. Read that section again, please.

        “Since these are proposed changes, they will not affect evaluations of any Veteran currently receiving compensation for an impacted disability. Instead, this is an opportunity for Veterans and the public to comment on these proposed changes over the next 60 days. VA will consider the comments received and address them in a subsequent final rule which may make these changes effective.”

        They won’t change as long as they are in the proposal stage. Once/IF they get written into the Federal Register (may make these changes effective), currently compensated veterans are open for re-evaluation and potentially reduced benefits. That’s how I read it.

        • Z. Anderson March 10, 2022 at 2:35 pm

          Go back and read the final paragraph. “When the proposed changes are finalized, Veterans who currently receive compensation for a service-connected condition can apply for increased compensation. And even if a Veteran’s symptoms no longer warrant the current evaluation they have based on the finalized changes, no reductions shall be made unless an improvement in the Veteran’s disability is shown to have occurred based on the last schedule used to assign their evaluation.” The final sentence is the most important. Your changes will be based on the initial schedule that assigned your disability.

  52. Travis March 10, 2022 at 12:20 pm

    We are calling our members of Congress about this and this. The people responsible for the changes need to fired.

    • Anthony C. Serusa March 10, 2022 at 1:26 pm

      I have obstructive sleep apnea and have been using a CPAP for about two years now. I have Tinnitus as well. They said some about the disease thatcause it? I never filed for my OSA Because I heard all they do is deny deny. Now they’re just going to rate the veterans at zero percent? Now you know why so many people say bad things about the VA. This is horrible.

  53. william sunbury March 10, 2022 at 12:18 pm

    i have copd and have been fighting for over 30 years because of being in contact with asbestos on board my first ship and have gotten nowhere with it even with all my information given to them now i have cancer and been fighting for everything plus found out i have to get a major vascular surgery on my left hip and leg cause of no blood flow and have migraine syndrome from before and during my whole 15 years of navy service and again nothing is being done except for taking two pills every day for who knows when with no test being done i have tried everyone to get help and filed so many request and claims for my increase in disability but with everything going on nothing i keep fighting but it’s a mess for all of us trying to get back on our feet

  54. joseph pelikan March 10, 2022 at 12:01 pm

    So…you suddenly think living on a cpap machine is not worth compensation? Looking for any way possible to screw us out of our money. No wonder so many veterans committing suicide out there. But you relaxed the conditions for those with asthma? Using a cpap keeps people alive…and you wanna say that we need to take away compensation because the device is keeping us alive as intended?

    So a device needs to keep me alive for you to take away my compensation?

    So would that mean we take away compensation for those in a wheel chair because hey….its doing what it is supposed to do? Getting them from one location to another?

    I mean this is the equivilent of what you are proposing.

    • Rochelle James March 10, 2022 at 1:20 pm

      Interesting, I am a service connected vet and I want see how this play out for my husband who served desert storm/desert shield he has some issues which the VA is not helping.

  55. G March 10, 2022 at 11:54 am

    This is appalling and of course these decisions will be made by people who do not live with the disabilities veterans have to deal with and a daily basis. What’s more appalling is that you let us comment on this but we all know you will not only read this but you will disregard anything any veteran will have to say, just to save a buck. We did our part for our country and we shouldn’t have to fight a battle against the government for compensation we deserve. Further, why are current rating decisions in limbo, is it so you can hold off until this unfair system comes in to play? Again shame on the government on not doing anything for its veterans who sacrificed so much for this country.

  56. RAMON E FIGUEROA March 10, 2022 at 11:28 am

    Can you get nodules in your lungs from burn pits or duds explosives or a faulty sleep apnea machine?

  57. Miguel F March 10, 2022 at 11:18 am

    I was going to add a comment but I can see that many of us have the same opinion and do not want to repeat the same thing. I do not know who decided that sleeping with a CPAP machine every night is not a disability. Try for a few months first and then reconsider your decision.

  58. Doug March 10, 2022 at 11:16 am

    The Veteran’s Administration is getting sicker all the time. You wonder why us veteran’s commit suicide so much? Take a strong look at what you propose to do for us and to us. YOU make it more difficult for us to continue to live in this world after the government sends us off to war. We Veteran’s are actually still in the war. The war against the VA because we have to fight tooth and nail to get what VA decides is ok. It’s a serious battle to fight the VA for our benefits. We risked out lives to fight for this country now you make us fight once again for peanuts. VA should make it easier to file claims and the benefit should at least stay the same low rates rather than lower the rates. VA should be ashamed.

  59. John R Walker Jr. March 10, 2022 at 10:36 am

    I cannot begin too tell you how disappointed I am in the negative changes. We have fought hard to have what we got. This change only benefits the people looking to save money by putting in a catch net for veterans . I fought for my hearing loss and tinnitus. The way they fiqure disability rating is what needs to change, by increase not decrease.

  60. Lemuel Smith March 8, 2022 at 6:23 pm

    The whole set up of VA benefits is a big slap in the face to me! While I am appreciative of the benefits I do receive, I can’t help but feel like we as veterans aren’t protected the way we should be. There are various disabilities we have and things that are put into our lives to help us navigate the day to day of our disabilities just so we can function a little bit. Whether a CPAP, medication, ankle braces, inhalers, the list goes on and on; we depend on these things EVERYDAY! So my question is, WHY ARE WE PENALIZED FOR THESES VICES DOING THEIR JOBS IN OUR LIVES??? If we stopped talking the medicine, using the machines, etc., we would be right back at square one and having to fight through the system to regain or even make our voices heard. We put everything on the line to serve our country and yet I feel like that sacrifice goes unnoticed because someone behind a desk decides my life for me. Some of us have disabilities that make other disabilities worse and bring about new disabilities but aren’t taken seriously because they weren’t previously documented in service. WE DESERVE BETTER THAN THIS!! Thank you to all the other vets, past and present for your sacrifice and I pray we all begin to get treat fairly!

  61. Connor Larsen March 8, 2022 at 4:28 pm

    So money is more important then the health of the people who gave so much of their lives, health and mind. We sacrifice so much just to be shown that they care about money more then everyone who has served. I am very disappointed.

  62. Daniel March 8, 2022 at 2:30 pm

    It is very disheartening to hear that the VA is attempting to take away or reduce benefits from Veterans who suffer from tinnitus and sleep apnea. VA needs to realize that Veterans serve this nation and have sacrificed so much at the costs of their mind, body, and soul. Sleeping with a machine is not comfortable and is needed to prevent death and or other medical conditions. This is not a treatment it is a disability, understand that. Whoever is attempting to do this should be ashamed of themselves and take a good look in the mirror.

    • Sergio Hernandez March 10, 2022 at 11:50 am

      Why our government is giving 14 billions of Americans tax dollars to another country, yet finds ways to make it difficult for us Veterans to seek and get the help we need here. Shame on whoever is digging our hole.

  63. Matt Rogers March 7, 2022 at 1:33 pm

    Fellow vets,
    We have to fight these changes to Tinnitus and Sleep Apnea. Contact your local congressmen and start shining a light on the VA. They are downplaying our daily discomfort and distress to save a few bucks. It takes a few minutes and maybe we can throw a wrench in their plans.

  64. Oscar March 6, 2022 at 8:49 pm

    I have to depend on the CPAP machine for life to function for a service connected condition and receive 0%….unbelievable. There is a reason for using the machine and because the treatment is working doesn’t mean the condition is gone. Is this how much we are worth to Congress and VA…0% for any acquired condition while serving, really????

  65. Juan Ortiz March 4, 2022 at 12:18 pm

    It is obviously about the money. Sleep Apnea leads to other conditions as well. The fact that we need the CPAP machine to sleep better, means that we are dependent on the machine, thus making it a disability rating. So you are gonna tell me that someone on a wheelchair won’t get disability rating because they now can move around their house with said wheelchair? The wheelchair helps deal with the disability, it doesn’t fix it. Same with CPAP machine, it helps us deal with Sleep Apnea, it doesn’t cure it, we depend on the machine.

    • Shelton Riggins March 10, 2022 at 11:47 am

      I concur with Veterans on disability benefits. Temple TX VA informed me in December 2019 that I needed to sleep under a CPAC machine because I had severe sleep apnea. I did an overnight sleep test at Temple TX VA contract facility in November 2019. I have applied for my sleep apnea benefits several times. VA keeps giving me a thumbs down. It is a crying shame.

    • Charles Cummings March 11, 2022 at 5:01 am

      I have sleep apnea I need it everyday my CPAP I believe it cost of my diabetes and high blood pressure we need veterans taking care of veterans

  66. Mark March 4, 2022 at 7:46 am

    Taking away compensation for tinnitus is cruel. It’s something I suffer with every moment of every day and it can be maddening. Wrapping it up with another disease and taking away benefits as a stand alone issue is just a cruel way to save money by denying service members benefits. Just because you can’t see my pain doesn’t make my suffering any less real. Shame on you for even proposing this.

  67. Tim March 1, 2022 at 7:44 pm

    I wish they automatically increase veteran’s SC from 0 to 10 percent automaticallly without having to go through the “process” which would take a long time.

  68. Timothy P Lane Jr March 1, 2022 at 4:48 pm

    Here the truth call congress and complain this is like when they took dbqs away last year and congress reinstated them remember Here’s some facts pay attention .

    Tinnitus is the number disability
    And a stand alone disability
    Tinnitus has been around for over 80 years
    This is a scam by VA and it’s bullsht. They say they will grandfather people with Tinnitus in but what they say and do is 2 are different things wake up people.
    Call congress and VA if the VA Code goes away so does the rating which means decreased check saving them.the VA money. They can legally do it if the codes out of date.
    Also the VA is gonna go after all service members who file for a claim or increase and if they have Tinnitus gone. It’s about money and not.paying the vets. Plain and simple
    They can change our ratings under this there gonna do it. There gonna wipe Tinnitus away.
    VA is not any vets friend and don’t care about us. Again a money saving scam.
    This is Not about updating medical info and medicial terminology is
    Real doctors have wrote many papers about Tinnitus.
    This about Saveing VA money it’s the opinion of VA employees by the way. Not one doctor has come.out of this.
    Again Tinnitus has been around for over.80 years .
    The sleep apnea thing again more bs you can go from a 50 rating with a cpap to 0 if it controls
    the symptoms come.on now the depression thing is the only good change. They should start at 20 percent though not 10.
    Wake up call congress to many veterans are gonna get screwed by this.

    • LaChon Allen-Covington March 10, 2022 at 12:02 pm

      I truly felt the need to chime in on this topic. I agree with a lot of the comments made here it seems as though money is a bigger priority then the veteran themselves. I do not wear a CPAP machine, but I feel for the people who do. It does look very uncomfortable, it does prevent a lot of other issues and for you to state that you want to reduce it to 0% because the machine is doing what it’s supposed to do is it’s crazy. It’s still an impairment. It’s something that the veteran will still deal with the rest of their life, its service connected and they should be compensated for that. I’m quite sure there are other things that will be changing that are not attached in this storyline that will not benefit the veteran. And I’m truly not sure why asking for all of our comments is important because it seems as though these decisions have already been made.

  69. Michael Brown March 1, 2022 at 4:35 pm

    This is an effort to cut compensation and care for disabled vets. Sleep apnea is serious and wearing a machine doesn’t cure nor make it better over time. I could see going from 50% down to 30% but definitely not 0 — that would be disheartening. Obviously, based on the evaluation occurring while a member is in the Service it’s “service connected” — so what’s the problem. And for someone to say the “treatment” is working; therefore, you’re essentially good to go, they are absolutely crazy.

    The changes to the mental health rating criteria is good and bad — meaning, 0% will no longer be an option; however, they will put you through heavy scrutiny — many times over even before they rate you.

    I really hope and pray that if these ridiculous changes go into effect, that there’s no changes to the millions of veterans who has already received their ratings and compensation. The VA is already behind and re-looking and reevaluating millions of claims is a waste of taxpayers dollars. We need to fight to ensure we (retirees) and those who are soon to be retired, are taken care of — fairly!

  70. Florence Frandsen February 28, 2022 at 1:45 pm

    My husband, a retired Air Force Master Sergeant, died of Mesothelioma in 2018. Thankfully VFW assisted him and he finally was given a 100% Disability designation and a pittance payout due to his exposure to asbestos while in the Navy and many surgeries due to mesothelioma. The VA denied his Agent Orange claim submitted because he had flight line duty while stationed at Union Thailand during the Vietnam War and was exposed for the year he spent there. He suffered from petuitary gland issues requiring surgery, he had Type 2 Diabetes, he had prostrate cancer requiring surgery, and other medical issues defined in issues related to Agent Orange. After he passed away on January 28,2018, the VA took his January pay and left me with a pittance as a widow’s allowance. I believe there should be compensation for the Agent Orange exposure. I am sure many other wives have had the same experience. These men (and women) defend and love this country and are treated unfair by their own government.

  71. Devin February 26, 2022 at 8:02 pm

    This is completely ridiculous. I will be retiring in a few years and now will likely not be compensated at all for sleep apnea. Since when did we start worrying more about money than a member’s health? I was diagnosed with asthma and prescribed a corticosteroid inhaler that I use twice a day. This is a 30% disability rating-if I use the inhaler I’m okay but if I don’t my throat closes up and I wheeze really bad. I was also diagnosed with GERD – when I take my medicine I’m okay, but when I don’t I feel like someone dumped battery acid down my throat and have severe pain in my upper chest. Finally, I was diagnosed with obstructive sleep and have been using an APAP machine for the past year. If I don’t use the machine I’m extremely tired during the day-if I use it I’m typically okay. How is this any different from the aforementioned diagnosis’ that are controlled by medicines? You might as well just stop compensating members all together. This is a disgrace to our members and basically shows that it is only about one thing “money” and not the health and well being of those that sacrifice for this country. Please consider our health our saving money!

    • Devin February 26, 2022 at 8:12 pm

      Correction: Please consider our health over saving money!

  72. Rich February 25, 2022 at 11:21 pm

    Life Insurance company increased my health risk rating due to Sleep Apnea. They don’t care if I am using a CPAP machine. I am still at higher risk so explain to me how it should be 0%?

  73. Olu February 25, 2022 at 2:15 am

    This is absurd and ridiculous! I will live with the CPAP machine for the rest of my life which means if I don’t use it there’s a 90% chance of me dieing in my sleep one night and now this jokers that never served think they know better. Whoever that’s proposing this is a disgrace to this great nation.

  74. Christopher Bagwell February 23, 2022 at 6:02 am

    There are other Wealthy & not so Wealthy, Sovereign Nations in this World that pay 100% of Healthcare for all of their Citizens, and yet here, living Veterans make up such a small percentage of the tax paying population…Wake Up!…The Enemy is not a Combat Experienced Veteran or any Honorable Veteran for that matter, wether healthy or not. The Enemy is the unwillingness to evolve our Reality to a more Celestial Plane of existence. Homo-Sapiens, (once deemed HUMANITARIAN Beings), took thousands of years to evolve from Bartering to conducting Monetarism. Now we have been doing that for thousands of years. Today Life on our Planet is on the brink of extinction, and here we are arguing, (not blogging), over CLAIMS of CARE?!

    • Samantha Ramsey February 28, 2022 at 10:52 am

      Yall need to click on that federal registry link and comment. Leaving the comments here do no hood. Click on the federal registry link and let your voices be heard.

  75. Christopher Bagwell February 23, 2022 at 5:26 am

    If I had a dollar every time a FOBBIT claimed to experienced a tour mostly outside the wire I wouldn’t bother to file a VA claim…I’ve been on the “frontlines” as trucker, the last 14 years after I served as a Convoy Team member for 273 days of my 365 days during “ the Surge,” only to see all those who are awarded for their claims all while many “She’ll-Shocked!!” , (PTSD…please), Combat Experienced. eternal are still homeless, beggars, sharing their stories with me after I buy them a cup of coffee and simply listen. Some could be and are likely not honest, but some are forthright, and only share with because we were true brothers of “FUBAR” in Combat…As for those who set limits to help any Natural Bron US citizen or not, I will be more than happy to stand before you, or gladly meet you in the back for some wall to wall counseling later. Which ever you prefer.

    • Concerned Patriot February 24, 2022 at 10:30 am

      I agree. This is total BS! How the heck do you tell someone that is suffering from a service connected disability that since we’ve given you this machine, we feel we don’t need to be on the hook for anything else? That’s like hitting someone with your car and having your insurance company tell them that since they paid for the cast to be put on their leg it should be the extent of the care provided. Total BS! EVERYONE NEEDS TO CONTACT THEIR REPRESENTATIVES! This idiots making the decisions in the VA have probably never served in the military! Fire those morons!!!

  76. Christopher Bagwell February 23, 2022 at 5:00 am

    Seems one’s Oath ends between the black and red of the fiduciary spreadsheet, instead of any CLAIM to Humanitarianism. Appears Lady Liberty still scales Justice of the VIPs spells out to be Tyranny & Poverty for the People, rather than Liberty from it.

  77. Christopher Bagwell February 23, 2022 at 4:52 am

    I am to file a claim for care. The VA claims Care. How can anyone claim care, if they don’t receive or provide such a claim?

  78. Christopher Bagwell February 23, 2022 at 4:45 am

    How can anyone ever claim care if they don’t?

  79. Austin Jones February 22, 2022 at 4:37 pm

    So you’re telling me that I’m order to do
    Job in the Navy I have to wear a CPAP daily and send compliance reports every 90days or I can’t fly. Yet this warrants a ZERO % rating??? If I don’t wear it my O2 dips below 65% with over 100 episodes a night. And I am not overweight. And due to 22 years of flying and living by a ridiculous flight schedule has murdered my circadian rhythm. Therefore a CPAP IS required for daily function. Absolutely ridiculous.

  80. Greg Argentieri February 22, 2022 at 2:52 pm

    The rule would get rid of a dated part of VASRD that prevents a Veteran from getting a 100% rating for a mental health condition if they are able to work.

    This is everything

    Please act immediately

    Thank You for the help in preventing Suicide amongst our great Veterans.

    Everyone should have the dignity of work.

    Please act immediately

    • Christopher Bagwell February 23, 2022 at 5:10 am

      In less than a Century this culture has moved from Shell Shock, to Battle Fatigue, to PTSD, which is being misused all the time & often intermingled with Caring Fatigue! So when it comes to the scale of Liberty, Fiduciary outweighs the Hippocrates Oath? If that’s the case, then why bother reviewing any case at all? Many soldiers in the stress of Combat wouldn’t, even couldn’t approach their chain-of-command while deployed, due to the Leader’s lack of Empathy, when standing before the Ranks of Formation. When I went to enlist in 1994, my Recruiter told me not to bring up my childhood Sports Injuries! For 10 straight Years as a Minuteman no less, (for those of you who even understand it’s true Historical Ramifications), I can present LES statements that reflect more manual Labor in 14 years than many conducted in 20 years wearing the uniform. I say this for one reason! Every single time the small gatherings of the lower enlisted commented on “Sick Call,” as a way to avoid work, I was standing there! I was a fool to trust that the “Right of the Working Man” would outweigh the “Right of the College Paycheck Collectors!” There so many days as a so called “Dual-Status” technician that I was working to prep, clean, recover, repair, and maintain military vehicles or equipment before sunrise to beyond sunset, that most of the Armory forgot I was even there, and most, including the Command, would show up after me and go home before me, and I was working in uniform without their knowledge. Now! All my bad knees, ankles, feet, neck, & back issues that began to lead to my failing the same PT standards that Active Duty had to adhere, (& believe it I jogged, did sit-ups, push-ups, 3-5 days per week for 14 years), aren’t being cared for or recognized by the VA. I crawled all over every military vehicle from WW2 to 9/11, and submitted medical letters, labs, treatment, you name it, to my Readiness NCO, and even hand delivered them to Headquarters staff. Yet, they would sit in some bin, or on some desk, until the deadlines had passed, and I would start over. But with the same results…Now the VA once again, wants to set limits. 23 Medals & Awards I was given in the first 14 years of service, at which point, the 3rd Army said my next medal would be an MSM, and I was just given a CAB the prior year, and I credit that to the actions of my Gun Truck Crew & my Gun Truck Team to this day. No one will ever have all the facts to what happened to each soldier or sailor, but that doesn’t make their testimonies any less true when they have been recognized for their Army Values as many times as I have. Yet one Battalion Member sitting in the FOB, while I’m out on a mission, loses one DOD laptop in Iraq/Kuwait, and I loose my security clearance while I stay in theater for an additional year during the surge, to investigate others for Fraud, Waste, and Abuse, after I did a year as a Convoy Commander, neither of which fits my MOS. Yet, here I am 14 years later, 2 Major Federal Data-breaches later with my family and I being victims, I myself, being stuck over the road with my hands glued to a semi truck steering wheel often times for more than 70 hours per week trying to fight to keep the house for my wife and two kids, for all of those 14 years, with no chance in hell of ever being able to make to many of my BA appointments. Not to mention the VA denying me since 2008, calling me a liar. Not to mention the State processing me out without the opportunity to go before a MEB or a PEB probably because my notifications were forged just like one or two of my performance evaluations within my 15th or 16th year enlisted. All I got to say is there has been, is, and always will be Rats in the Cellar effecting the Foundation of this Sovereignty. In a fair and just society I would be able to call them out to the floor, (& I once was on the board for Audie Murphy Contestants I might add), but in the end, life is shorter for some verses others, and can be a blur when looking back. My Dad got denied by the VA for 35 years after earning 3 flying medals as a crew member during the Tet, and my Grandpa never saw a dime after dying from Mesothelioma and he served the heart of the campaigns in WW2. He was an Orphan after the previous Pandemic, and fibbed about his age in order to fight…So much for Humanitarianism…So much for “ Leaving.. No One Behind.”

      [Editor: Your nine identical comments were flagged as spam. Please only post a comment once.]

  81. Greg Argentieri February 22, 2022 at 2:47 pm

    It is well over due to eliminate the no work rule!

    This is welcomed great progress in recognizing worth in a Veteran no matter what circumstances they may be living with.

    Thank You


  82. W Gastineau February 22, 2022 at 2:11 pm

    What about what the disability has done to your life over the years before it was considered a disability and we had a name for it. Mine goes back 4 decades.

  83. Brian Wilson February 22, 2022 at 12:57 pm

    Sleep apnea affects me everyday and I’m still active duty. I use the machine everyday. This affects everything I do.
    Short version of this? How about the decision makers talk with us face to face instead of making choices in a vacuum away from the troops and sailors.

  84. Darryl February 22, 2022 at 12:42 pm

    Reducing Severe Obstructive Sleep Apnea to 0% just because you are using a CPAP should not be considered. When attending a C&P exam for other conditions, the doctors are to consider the veterans’ uncontrolled symptoms, not the symptoms as controlled on medication. Without the CPAP, we die, plain and simple. With the CPAP we are still not receiving great sleep but it keeps OSA from killing us in our sleep. This is clearly a decision based on $$$ and not scientific evidence. This rule change needs to be dropped from consideration as it makes no scientific or logical sense.

  85. Scott Feathers February 21, 2022 at 4:20 pm

    Utterly ridiculous. What other 0% disability causes you to haul a medical device anytime you leave your house on a trip? What other 0% disability could cause you to die if the power goes out? What other 0% disability blocks entire career fields like aviation, due to daytime sleepiness?

  86. Kathleen Price February 21, 2022 at 3:05 pm

    Ridiculous what they want to do after we served our country. I was in the Navy 1974
    the only female at my duty station and was accosted sexually. I was conveinently moved
    to another duty station 5 miles away and once again the only female. Sexually harassed
    while there. To this day I suffer, don’t take what little we have. I am 66 and single,
    I mentally cannot be in a relationship because of my past abuse.

  87. John Till February 21, 2022 at 1:50 pm

    I think what the VA bean counters are missing is a CPAP machine is not cheap. A good CPAP machine costs at least $800 and the monthly costs of a mask, hoses and replacement filters can run an easy $40-$80 a monthly. SO great a CPAP machine helps elevate the condition but it is not a cure. Should the rating be 50%, I guess that depends, but Zero?!?! The minimum should be 20% to make sure the Vet can afford the CPAP machine and ensure its proper maintenance.

  88. Aaron Doss February 21, 2022 at 1:04 am

    Does this have to be approved by just the VA? If it has to go to congress or senate we will get totally screwed they proved that with the automatic VA Healthcare enrollment. Two cents

  89. Jason February 20, 2022 at 8:40 am

    I have been in the military for 20 years, it has taken a major toll on my body and mind just like thousands of other. We have severed our country all over the world at the cost of family relationships and our health. The military and VA say they want to make sure veterans are taken care of once we are our of the military but they really don’t care becasue our time has past and these rule changes show this in full affect. If you really care about our veterans you would be doing everything to make sure they are taken care of not taking benefits away. I think its great you want to make sure people with mental illness are treated better and help them get the treatment needed. However, you should take away the things that are helping thousands of other vets at the same time.

  90. Rich February 19, 2022 at 11:16 pm

    I mean you have to use a CPAP for rest of your life due to service. Interrupted sleep schedule is the driving factor. So why is it gonna he rated 0%. If they want to lower it okay, but 50% down to zero? So I have to say it is a mental problem with sleep to get 10% versus the machine that says I have a problem?

  91. Larry February 19, 2022 at 7:04 pm

    Please leave our veterans alone. Look within your own ranks to save money there is so much waist to capture. Some VA medical centers have more employees on the roles than veterans coming in for treatment and care. Especially during the last couple of years with the pandemic crisis most treatment is being given by teleconference and virtual. Some VA medical center are like ghost towns. Why are there no veterans present.

  92. BECKY L CROSS February 19, 2022 at 5:16 pm

    VA will ensure Veterans get the compensation they need and deserve,… REALLY? VA does everything in its power including outright lying to prevent veterans from receiving disability compensation. Lie, delay, deny, then ignore.

  93. Mike February 19, 2022 at 4:19 pm

    Its funny because they’re trying to revamp the adjustment disorder rating. I was diagnosed with adjustment disorder as a service connection but I was also diagnosed by VHA and every provider as PTSD. I was never treated for adjustment disorder nor given a plan of care for it. Will this new rating system ensure the service member is treated for their service connection. I find it extremely unethical to diagnose someone because it makes their claim easier to adjust in the future. You cant have VA diagnosing one thing having a VHA who also does the CP exams treat for a different problem without and then not automatically add that service connection to the veteran.

  94. Cristina February 19, 2022 at 11:27 am

    No we do not agree with the Tinnitus changes. Tinnitus should stay as it is. The only reason the VA would want to do this is in because less veterans would be diagnosed with Tinnitus in the future, and not many veterans get diagnosed with hearing loss!

  95. Danielle Roach February 19, 2022 at 10:04 am

    I have suffered with chronic sleep issues for years while on active duty while suffering from untreated PTSD. In fact the Army tried hard to call it everything except PTSD for a wh