Rating Process No Fun
I have been busy for the past three weeks putting together a “Personal Statement for the VA” to submit to the Veterans Administration, along with the paperwork the PVA is going to submit on my behalf. Upon finishing, the Personal Statement, it became clear that I have a lot of well documented information. However, I do not know anything about the process. And, I cannot rattle off all the form numbers like some of the Veteran. Also I do not know what is coming next except for a rejection.
Expecting the rejection
How do I know there will be a rejection? It is only common sense. I am a paralegal. My argument that I gave to the VA was a fair one. However, research shows the VA has a low pass rate on first-time submissions. I am okay with a rejection. It simply means waiting and resubmitting with a stronger argument.
As many of my doctors have said, “my case is complex.” What they will rarely say is my “complex” case is related to service-connection. Many of my physicians say “she had this condition since she was in the service.” Other Physicians say “she states she had this condition since she was in the service” which is not so helpful. It certainly is complicated.
Reviewing my own records
The most demanding thing I had to do is go back through my records all the way to 1986 and read what was available. I do not have all of them. However, some records were available. I reviewed thousands of pages, and some of the information was new to me and quite honestly distressing. Years later, what should I do. All you can do is keep on marching forward.
The mistake that I made was I waited 36 years to file for an increase in my VA rating. Even though I was having significant problems that kept getting worse over time, I forced myself to work until I had no further option. Not I am stuck! Not a recommended path for success.
Preparing for the file differently
However, I can give you an option that I hope will help. If you are considering increasing your rating or just want a way to track your “major” incidences within the VA Medical and Community Care File you will always know 1) where they are, and 2) what was the cause that led to the event (medical visit).
Set up Excel Table that tracks: Date, Provider, VA or Community Care, Reason for Visit, Instructions from Provider, Follow-Up Date, Emergency (Yes or No)
I suggest you get a copy of the associated provider notes and put them in a file by scanning them. Make sure the name includes the Provider Name and date, such as DrBrown01042019 You should have one Provider note for each row in your Excel table. Or, if you do not have a scanner just make a paper file and write the file name (DrBrown01042019) on the upper right-hand corner. Then file the paper files in order just like the Excel Table.
I hope this helps especially if you are going to work on a Personal Statement. If you need some help, let me know, and I will be glad to help.
After a C&P Exam is Done
What is next while waiting?
When a Veteran receives a C&P Exam, the Veteran should always provide feedback whether exam went. great or negative. It is the only way to improve the process. I have seen many responses by Veterans who say their C&P exam went terrible, but then they are totally surprised by the outcome of their recommendations. https://www.research.net/r/VBAMDESURVEY