Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Falling Short on Providing for OUR Veterans

Falling Short on Providing for Veterans
By Kacey M.
February 28, 2008 01:58 PM EST

Paralyzed Veterans of America, along with their co-authors
AMVETS, Disabled American Veterans, and the Veterans of
Foreign Wars, have for the 22nd consecutive year, published
the 2009 Independent Budget, a comprehensive policy
document that recommends to Congress, the funding levels
necessary for the Department of Veterans Affairs to provide
adequate health care and benefits for veterans.

The Independent Budget recommends $42.8 billion for total
medical care but the Administration has only requested
$41.2 billion - a short fall of approximately $1.6 billion. In
addition, the Administration has chosen to recommend an
increase in certain veterans' prescription drug co-payments
from $8 to $15 - almost double!

I know I'm not the only concerned and appalled citizen here.
Where are veterans going to receive the care, programs and
services they have rightfully earned and deserve if not
available through the Department of Veterans Affairs? This
is especially true for those coming back with catastrophic
injuries who require specialized medical care.

Check this out if you're interested in learning more:

After all veterans have done for us, is this the best the
Administration can do for them? What do you all think
about this? Yes it is appalling.
Amorita R., Mar 2, 2008, 4:11am EST

I think that, among other things, the problem of PTSD for
recent combat veterans needs to be addressed NOW instead
of waiting 20 or 30 years down the road when it becomes
so severe that it's hard to treat. My husband has PTSD, and
while we were at his compensation and pension appointment
1 1/2 weeks ago, we were told (as we were ALSO told
through a letter in the mail) that his PTSD part of the claim
has been denied.

He was even diagnosed with PTSD WHILE he was in the
military, and has it on record. While talking to one of the
VA reps who will handle his questions, etc, she told us that
they always deny that part of the claim until enough time has
passed - which she said is usually years later. It's a very real
problem.As for me, when I was there I asked some of my own
personal questions, since I will have to fight even harder for
VA benefits. I submitted a claim back in November, and still
have some evidence I need to pull together to support it.

I was diagnosed with Crohn's Disease while in the service, and
they separated me trying to say it was a pre-existing condition,
ONLY with the argument that it is an auto-immune disease
which it really isn't, since it attacks bacteria in the intestines and
not the actual organs), so I had to be predisposed to it in order to
get it. Which again, is not true. So for 3 years I never knew I was
eligible for benefits. Now I know I am, I just have a lot of fighting
to do in order to get it.
That's MRS BooBoo to you!, Mar 3, 2008, 4:51pm EST

Very appalling! And the above comment about the Crohn's Disease,
ought not to take this long. Pre-existing condition my arse. Can they
prove he enlisted with it??
Dina - Nature Babe!, Mar 3, 2008, 5:07pm EST

It is unforgivable that a single veteran be without ANYTHING they
need to help them rebuild the families and their lives when they
return from active service -- in a war zone or anywhere else. I'm not
one of those gung-ho types!! I've protested my share of wars. But
I have never held one ill feeling or harbored an ounce of ill will for
those who serve to protect my right to do so!THIS should be one of
the major presidential platform issues. For any who may think these
are exceptions, or that this contention is inaccurate, it's not. One of
our oldest friends served in the military and was exposed to a
chemical agent that ultimately caused his 80% disability. It was
some agent that was supposed to incapacitate the enemy. It took
him 10 years to receive a permanent disability status. By the way
-- he is 51 years old right now - the same age as I am - our
birthdays are only 1 day apart.
Mary M., Mar 3, 2008, 5:45pm EST

First they have to go to war without needed protection and now
they have to fight again, perhaps for the rest of their lives for the
treatment they need. I remember the poor Vietnam vets coming
back unable to live in a house and yet, no treatment. This has
always been bad, but under this administration it's become the
worst I've seen.I, too, do not support pre-emptive wars but I
certainly support those who give their own comfort and their
well-being to carry out their orders around the world. They
deserve so much more.The long tours of duty, short R & R and
lack of equipment is shameful. To those who have lost families,
and those who are struggling with emotional damage; I'm so very
sorry that your country has not responded to you in kind for your
service. I write letters, sign petitions, post rants and vote to
support you. It's the least we can do for your service to us.
Sandy F., Mar 3, 2008, 6:48pm EST

Please remember that increasing Co-Payments for Prescriptions
is just another "Back Door" TAX on Veterans so the administration
can keep cutting taxes for the obscenely wealthy who feel no
obligation to pay for ANYTHING! These kinds of reports make me
physically ill, and increase my loathing for this administration
(as if it could get any worse)!
Spartan *, Mar 3, 2008, 9:24pm EST

I am a part of the brain injury community. It is hard for vets to find
the programs they need to rebuild cognitive skills. Sadly, this is also
true for the rest of us who are not near a research hospital or
university that works with brain injured people.Because these guys
have some special needs there are only a few vet centers that have
trained staff to work them. It seems to me it would be easy enough
to develop programs along the lines of those at Coastline Community
College's ABI Program or the Reiker Institute in New York.
Anita Dehghani, Mar 4, 2008, 12:06am EST

Hopefully whomever is elected will overturn this travesty in 1/09.
Its a crying' shame.
donna f., Mar 4, 2008, 8:40am EST

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