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Vets win PTSD settlement (And they win big!)
The Washington Post ^ | 07/29/2011 | Steve Vogel

Posted on 07/29/2011 8:08:31 PM PDT by JohnBrownUSA

A class action settlement announced Friday between the federal government and a group of disabled veterans will award lifetime health-care benefits to more than 1,000 veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan who were discharged from the service because of post-traumatic stress disorder.

In a motion filed Thursday with the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, the National Veterans Legal Service Program and the government jointly asked the court to approve lifetime disability retirement benefits to 1,029 veterans with PTSD who were denied those benefits upon discharge from the military following their wartime service.

“It’s getting your dignity back,” said one of the plaintiffs, Air Force veteran Aimee Sherrod, who served three deployments in Iraq and Pakistan from 2001 to 2005 and was subsequently given a diagnosis of PTSD. “It’s a huge relief.”

The NVLSP’s lawsuit in 2008 alleged that the military services violated the law by failing to assign a 50 percent disability rating to those discharged for PTSD — a rating that entitles the veteran to disability retirement benefits.

“The veterans covered by this agreement were exposed to highly traumatic events during deployment, only to return home and be shortchanged on benefits after the military found they suffered from PTSD that was so severe that they needed to be discharged,” said Bart Stichman, co-executive director of NVLSP, which filed the class action lawsuit in 2008.

“Today, a terrible wrong to our nation’s war veterans is being righted.”Stichman added.

The settlement must be approved by a judge before it is final.

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: benefits; ptsd; va; veterans
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Hooah to the National Veterans Legal Service Program!

Settlement Agreement:

National Center for PTSD:

'It takes the strength and courage of a warrior to ask for help!'

1 posted on 07/29/2011 8:08:33 PM PDT by JohnBrownUSA
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To: JohnBrownUSA; SandRat; JulieRNR21; Liz

Excellent news. The men and women in uniform give up so much for the rest of us.

2 posted on 07/29/2011 8:11:43 PM PDT by Clintonfatigued (Illegal aliens collect welfare checks that Americans won't collect)
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To: JohnBrownUSA

Thank God!

Nobody who doesn’t have it will never really understand it.

I am overjoyed for them all!

3 posted on 07/29/2011 8:12:40 PM PDT by Salamander (I'm your pain.)
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To: Clintonfatigued
I'm glad you're thrilled because you are going to be paying these guys a handsome indemnity for the rest of their (or your) life, whether they deserve it or not.
4 posted on 07/29/2011 8:14:53 PM PDT by hinckley buzzard
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To: JohnBrownUSA
‘It takes the strength and courage of a warrior to ask for help!’<<<

and that's the last thing a !@#$%^& Vet wants to do.........

5 posted on 07/29/2011 8:16:19 PM PDT by M-cubed
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To: hinckley buzzard

This is one case where I don’t mind the cost. It cost them much more than it’ll cost you or me.

6 posted on 07/29/2011 8:19:23 PM PDT by Clintonfatigued (Illegal aliens collect welfare checks that Americans won't collect)
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To: JohnBrownUSA

What am I missing here? How is all this not covered by Obamacare—which just extended lifetime healthcare to every American, regardless of military service, regardless of veterans’ status at VA hospitals?

7 posted on 07/29/2011 8:19:36 PM PDT by Mach9
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To: JohnBrownUSA

How much will this cost the taxpayers?

In Gurgling Frog Fairy Statues?


8 posted on 07/29/2011 8:21:55 PM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Happiness)
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To: JohnBrownUSA

Don’t get to excited about this win...0 and both parties have BIG plans to gut the active duty and retired Military.

Obama gutting the Military

From VFW inquiry email:

Thank you for your inquiry. It’s true that military benefits have been targeted to help balance the budget, however, the attacks are actually coming from both sides of the aisle, with Republicans and Democrats both suggesting steep cuts to personnel programs.

The VFW is also very aware of the back room dealings attempting to address the debt crisis, and we’re working to ensure that the nation’s budget is not balanced on the backs of her veterans. Within the last week, the VFW has identified 10 specific benefits that have been targeted by Congress for cuts to help pay the nation’s bills after 10 years of war, which we call the “10 for 10” plan. With this in mind, we rolled out a call-to-action today to inform legislators that “10 for 10” is a morally unconscionable and unacceptable solution. Veterans paid for these benefits by making a commitment to our nation that 99 percent of Americans are unwilling to make. They have already sacrificed repeatedly over the last 10 years in an effort to preserve our nation’s ideals. It is simply wrong to ask for more. You can read the call-to-action and learn how to help in this effort at the link below:

READ THE CUTS/PLANS and pass it on:



Ryan M. Gallucci

Deputy Director, National Legislative Service

Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States

IMPORTANT NOTICE! This email message, including any attachments, is for the sole use of the intended recipient and may contain privileged and/or confidential information. If you are not the intended recipient, you are hereby notified that any unauthorized review, use, disclosure, or distribution of this electronic information and/or any attachment is prohibited. If you have received this email message in error, please notify the sender immediately and then delete the electronic message and any attachments.

You will noticed the Disable Vets are targeted! SEE my tag line. I am a Ret. US Navy Senior Chief’s wife.


9 posted on 07/29/2011 8:22:26 PM PDT by GailA (Any congress critter who fails to keep faith with the Military, will NOT keep faith with YOU!)
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To: hinckley buzzard
I'm glad you're honest...from your page

I am one of those who are “sometimes in error, never in doubt.”<<

SO WERE THEY!!!!!!...define your doubt...

10 posted on 07/29/2011 8:26:48 PM PDT by M-cubed
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To: JohnBrownUSA

Read Stolen Valor, about the PTSD scam.

11 posted on 07/29/2011 8:32:39 PM PDT by lurk
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To: Mach9

Essentials of evaluative rating.

This rating schedule is primarily a guide in the evaluation of disability resulting from all types of diseases and injuries encountered as a result of or incident to military service. The percentage ratings represent as far as can practicably be determined the average impairment in earning capacity resulting from such diseases and injuries and their residual conditions in civil occupations. Generally, the degrees of disability specified are considered adequate to compensate for considerable loss of working time from exacerbations or illnesses proportionate to the severity of the several grades of disability. For the application of this schedule, accurate and fully descriptive medical examinations are required, with emphasis upon the limitation of activity imposed by the disabling condition. Over a period of many years, a veteran’s disability claim may require reratings in accordance with changes in laws, medical knowledge and his or her physical or mental condition. It is thus essential, both in the examination and in the evaluation of disability, that each disability be viewed in relation to its history.

Service-Connected Disabilities:

Compensation and Pension Service:

Service connection may be granted for a disease or injury incurred in or aggravated by service. 38 U.S.C.A. §§ 1110. Service connection may also be granted for any disease diagnosed after discharge, when all of the evidence, including that pertinent to service, establishes that the disease was incurred in service. 38 C.F.R. § 3.303(d).

Establishing service connection generally requires (1) medical evidence of a current disability; (2) medical, or in certain circumstances, lay evidence of in-service occurrence or aggravation of a disease or injury; and (3) medical evidence of a nexus between the claimed in-service disease or injury and the present disability. Hickson v. West, 12 Vet. App. 247, 253 (1999); 38 C.F.R. § 3.303(a).

However, the absence of a documented disability while in service is not fatal to a claim for service connection. Ledford v. Derwinski, 3 Vet. App. 87, 89 (1992). When a Veteran does not meet the regulatory requirements for a disability at separation, he can still establish service connection by submitting evidence that a current disability is causally related to service. Hensley v. Brown, 5 Vet. App. 155, 159-60 (1993).

The Board must assess the credibility and weight of all the evidence, including the medical evidence, to determine its probative value, accounting for the evidence which it finds to be persuasive or unpersuasive, and providing reasons for rejecting any evidence favorable to the claimant. See Masors v. Derwinski, 2 Vet. App. 181 (1992). Equal weight is not accorded to each piece of evidence contained in the record; every item of evidence does not have the same probative value.

In determining whether service connection is warranted for a disability, VA is responsible for determining whether the evidence supports the claim or is in relative equipoise, with the Veteran prevailing in either event, or whether a preponderance of the evidence is against the claim, in which case the claim is denied. 38 U.S.C.A. § 5107; Gilbert v. Derwinski, 1 Vet. App. 49 (1990). When there is an approximate balance of positive and negative evidence regarding any issue material to the determination, the benefit of the doubt is afforded to the Veteran.

12 posted on 07/29/2011 8:33:23 PM PDT by JohnBrownUSA (Don't Tread On Me!)
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To: hinckley buzzard


These disabled veterans with PTSD deserve these benefits.

If they don’t have a valid diagnosis of PTSD, then no veteran will be entitled to these benefits.

13 posted on 07/29/2011 8:35:14 PM PDT by JohnBrownUSA (Don't Tread On Me!)
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To: M-cubed

And my young combat veteran friend cynically jokes about collecting his “disability benefits” for PTSD.

Meanwhile, his elder noncombat veteran “peers”, sucked off the “disability” teat of the government for hearing losses, due to attending war era rock concerts.

14 posted on 07/29/2011 8:36:33 PM PDT by sarasmom ( A Fine is a Tax for doing wrong. A Tax is a Fine for doing well.)
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To: sarasmom

The disabilities of tinnitus and hearing loss in the military are typically the result of exposure to loud noises, such as weapons being fired, aircraft sounds, engine room sounds, ect.

15 posted on 07/29/2011 8:45:05 PM PDT by JohnBrownUSA (Don't Tread On Me!)
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To: JohnBrownUSA; sarasmom

Most of the vets are deserving, but disability is one area that is rife with fraud. This is in part because nobody wants to appear to appear to be uncaring by questioning a person’s illness.

This, and all the other war injuries, are going to cost us millions over the years. It will cost the taxpayers money, but what the veterans and their families have paid is far worse. Politicians start these wars, and everyone else pays the price.

16 posted on 07/29/2011 8:51:12 PM PDT by Pining_4_TX ( The state is the great fiction by which everybody seeks to live at the expense of everybody else. ~)
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To: sarasmom

PTSD diagnoses are not handed out like candy.

Veterans have to see a psychiatrist over a period of time, take psychometric testing, swallow all different kinds of psychotropic medications, some with nasty side effects, and fulfill DSM-IV PTSD criteria.

DSM-IV-TR criteria for PTSD:

In 2000, the American Psychiatric Association revised the PTSD diagnostic criteria in the fourth edition of its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV-TR)(1). The diagnostic criteria (A-F) are specified below.

Diagnostic criteria for PTSD include a history of exposure to a traumatic event meeting two criteria and symptoms from each of three symptom clusters: intrusive recollections, avoidant/numbing symptoms, and hyper-arousal symptoms. A fifth criterion concerns duration of symptoms and a sixth assesses functioning.

Criterion A: stressor

The person has been exposed to a traumatic event in which both of the following have been present:

The person has experienced, witnessed, or been confronted with an event or events that involve actual or threatened death or serious injury, or a threat to the physical integrity of oneself or others.

The person’s response involved intense fear,helplessness, or horror. Note: in children, it may be expressed instead by disorganized or agitated behavior.

Criterion B: intrusive recollection

The traumatic event is persistently re-experienced in at least one of the following ways:

Recurrent and intrusive distressing recollections of the event, including images, thoughts, or perceptions. Note: in young children, repetitive play may occur in which themes or aspects of the trauma are expressed.

Recurrent distressing dreams of the event. Note: in children, there may be frightening dreams without recognizable content

Acting or feeling as if the traumatic event were recurring (includes a sense of reliving the experience, illusions, hallucinations, and dissociative flashback episodes,including those that occur upon awakening or when intoxicated). Note: in children, trauma-specific reenactment may occur.

Intense psychological distress at exposure to internal or external cues that symbolize or resemble an aspect of the traumatic event.

Physiologic reactivity upon exposure to internal or external cues that symbolize or resemble an aspect of the traumatic event

Criterion C: avoidant/numbing

Persistent avoidance of stimuli associated with the trauma and numbing of general responsiveness (not present before the trauma), as indicated by at least three of the following:

Efforts to avoid thoughts, feelings, or conversations associated with the trauma

Efforts to avoid activities, places, or people that arouse recollections of the trauma

Inability to recall an important aspect of the trauma

Markedly diminished interest or participation in significant activities

Feeling of detachment or estrangement from others
Restricted range of affect (e.g., unable to have loving feelings)

Sense of foreshortened future (e.g., does not expect to have a career, marriage, children, or a normal life span)

Criterion D: hyper-arousal

Persistent symptoms of increasing arousal (not present before the trauma), indicated by at least two of the following:

Difficulty falling or staying asleep

Irritability or outbursts of anger

Difficulty concentrating


Exaggerated startle response

Criterion E: duration

Duration of the disturbance (symptoms in B, C, and D) is more than one month.

Criterion F: functional significance

The disturbance causes clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning.

Specify if:

Acute: if duration of symptoms is less than three months

Chronic: if duration of symptoms is three months or more

Specify if:
With or Without delay onset: Onset of symptoms at least six months after the stressor

17 posted on 07/29/2011 8:51:12 PM PDT by JohnBrownUSA (Don't Tread On Me!)
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To: hinckley buzzard

There are really cool advances in treating PTS, especially neuro/biofeedback. Works. So when they are treated, they can start to get their feet back on the ground. Especially the homeless vets. I think (and I am just projecting) that this treatment will help a lot of others, too, rape victims, abused kids, etc. and the investment will save y’all money.

18 posted on 07/29/2011 8:54:00 PM PDT by huldah1776
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To: Pining_4_TX

I agree.

19 posted on 07/29/2011 8:57:57 PM PDT by JohnBrownUSA (Don't Tread On Me!)
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To: sarasmom
Meanwhile, his elder noncombat veteran “peers”, sucked off the “disability” teat of the government for hearing losses, due to attending war era rock concerts.

I suffered hearing loss in the peacetime army, simply by training on M60s and firing the 105MM cannon and machine guns. People who have never been on a range with tanks firing and no hearing protection(which the army didn't provide at the time)can even imagine the noise level reached, not to mention the blast effect of the main guns going off.

I do not receive any benefits from it and I imagine there are a whole lot of other vets who suffer from the same problem and who do not collect either. BTW, I never listened to music at a level that would approach hearing loss levels.

20 posted on 07/29/2011 9:08:57 PM PDT by calex59
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