Old 01-31-2019, 10:37 AM #1 (permalink)
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Default PVA/newly diagnosed

My husband is newly diagnosed and a veteran. We contacted PVA in Houston and PVA filed a claim for benefits. Does anyone know how long this should be taking? Once the claim was filed, the PVA person will not reply to our emails or phone messages. We are new to this and thought PVA would be supportive but not so far.
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Old 01-31-2019, 02:47 PM #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: PVA/newly diagnosed

.if you filed a claim in November when diagnosed you should have received a reply by now. unfortunately, not all pva reps provide stellar representation. regardless, there is no excuse for the pva rep to disregards phone inquires. looks like the home office for pva texas is located in Crosby, of all places, tel 800 933 4261 or 713 520 8782. give them a call regarding the status of your claim and mention that you can't contact your pva hope you didn' file your claim in Crosby!! please keep us informed of your status. suggest you call today. good luck. pva is like any other organization. when we fail to receive adequate service we need to go up the chain for better service. it is not a matter of stepping on toes but a matter of survival, not only monetary benefits but also health, pharmacy, social worker, etc. in our situation we have to advocate for ourselves
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Old 01-31-2019, 10:13 PM #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: PVA/newly diagnosed

In addition to following Frank's excellent advice, I would encourage you to create an account at https://www.ebenefits.va.gov/ebenefits/homepage to allow you to monitor the initial claim and any subsequent claims for benefits once the initial claim or claims are approved. Click the Register button in the top right corner to add a new account.
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Old 02-01-2019, 05:17 PM #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: PVA/newly diagnosed

Thank you fo much for your replies. I tried one more time to reach the PVA and used the regular number instead of his direct line and by a miracle he answered. He said our claim is being passed from center to center and canít figure out why. He said he keeps asking if they need anything and they say no. He says he is watching it daily. So not sure what to do now.
I have been trying to access ebenefits but it says my husband is not in DEERS. I have filled out their online form to have him added multiple times with only an acknowledgement once. I have called and talked to multiple people after being passed round and around with the same result. They say all You can do is fill out the form and submit it and they then do it again. He is still not in DEERS so I canít access ebenefits. I have no hope of it happening.
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Old 02-01-2019, 09:39 PM #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: PVA/newly diagnosed

Kleind, is this the first claim for disability he has ever filed?

Does he have copies of his DD214 discharge.?

Has he ever or does he see a VA Medical Facility for any of his other health needs?

Does he receive disability compensation for another disability?

Does he belong to any other Vet Organization (DAV, VFW or American Legion)?
In one filing I had to get the DAV removed as my representative.

What era Vet is he... Viet Nam, Gulf War, Iraq?

If he has only civilian medical records it may take longer. Often civilian medical
facilities won't reply for medical record requests from the VA or it takes weeks
for them to do so with release of information forms signed.

If it is his first encounter with the VA... you may have some hoops to jump
through but be patient. DO NOT CALL YOUR CONGRESSMAN/WOMAN.

Sorry for all the questions.

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Old 02-02-2019, 12:50 AM #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: PVA/newly diagnosed

Vietnam Era vet who has never received any va services or had any claims filed with them before now.
When the claim was filed by the PVA, included in the claim was records from both his neurologists with the diagnosis and tests as well as a copy of his DD214 which we provided.
He doesnít belong to any veterans organizations.
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Old 02-02-2019, 01:19 AM #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: PVA/newly diagnosed

Having two Neurologists with diagnosis is a big plus.

Mike (Atsugi) might chime in here. The VA may still want verification from
the two civilian Neurologists... which takes time. Hopefully the medical
records from the Nuero's included the diagnostic code. (It's little things
that hang things up) If not the VA may be requesting them. More time.

I'm sure he has but have him read over his DD214 to make sure there
are no mistakes.

I’ve been dealing with the VA since 1978.

In 1996 I went to Washington DC to the Court of Veteran Appeals
for two days with a civilian lawyer. I won my claim.

It could have been very easily awarded at VA Regional level.

I’m somewhat learned in the workings of the VA.

There was a Director at Regional who once told Vet Reps at a meeting
“Every “T” will be crossed, every “I” will be dotted and any diagnosis
will be scrutinized before any claim award leaves this office.”
Fortunately, that S.O.B. retired.

Unfortunately, I’d guess some of his kind is still around.

I hope you hear good news soon.

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Old 02-02-2019, 10:16 AM #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: PVA/newly diagnosed

Thanks for the info and advice.
I appreciate the help.
I canít imagine having to go through all the things some of you have had to endure and take care of my husband too.
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Old 02-02-2019, 10:33 AM #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: PVA/newly diagnosed

Again, I hope you get great news soon.

There are two things the VA works with priority... The PVA and Survivor
Benefits.

As things go if you're not comfortable with your PVA Representative consider
calling PVA National Headquarters.

I hate you are dealing with the bureaucratic grinder and caring for your
husband. It's so hard but be patient... sometimes good things don't come
quickly.

Hoping this was just a glitch or two that can be easily resolved and move
things along.

Keep any updates coming.
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Old 02-03-2019, 10:14 AM #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: PVA/newly diagnosed

Not sure what my point is here, but.....

I received a 'probable' diagnosis from Mayo in Rochester, MN April 22.
Returned to Sanford in Fargo where I had initially been seen and was told 'definant' ALS on April 26.
Turned my paperwork in to PVA in South Dakota April 28.
Approved April 29.
First check June 1 for May, then a week or so later received several months back pay.

Don't know how locked in to the PVA in Houston that you are, but...
There are other organizations... DAV, etc.
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Old 02-03-2019, 12:45 PM #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: PVA/newly diagnosed

I assume different PVAs operate at different level of of. I had a "probable" diagnosis from the Rochester Mayo neuro. The folks from PVA and ALSA worked to get that changed to just "ALS" and everything flowed smoothly from there--I think my first check was a month later. The non-medical staff at the VA clinic helped as well. I was told that the PVA staff worked in the same building as the VA offices that approved the request and had a good working relationship. I was lucky I guess, and hope you get through the red tape and get the benefits you deserve and need.

Ed
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Old 02-03-2019, 03:14 PM #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: PVA/newly diagnosed

Hello, Kleind. Welcome.

Although most veterans in the real world bad-mouth the VA, and usually for good reason, I have no doubt that you will, like us, discover that VA and PVA take ALS really seriously and they expedite our claims.


I'm a 20-year vet. My wife was a 3-year vet. After service, both of us worked at VA. I was in finance, she was a doctor. Then she got ALS.

We found that people at VA and PVA have their problems like all people do. There are some unmotivated people and there are some who are dedicated to rejecting any imperfect paperwork. So the best we can do is get knowledgeable and stay on top of them. After all, everything about ALS is life and death, and in a hurry.


Whenever I sent in a form to anywhere, I had a cover letter attached that told the person in plain English what I wanted them to do. I included references to their own regulation. I opened and closed each letter with "I am dying of incurable ALS with perhaps only a year to live. I and my family I need your help. Please approve the following expeditiously, according to regulation 123." Something like that.
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Old 02-04-2019, 09:38 AM #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: PVA/newly diagnosed

Kleind,

There may have been some comments posted above that might sound
discouraging.

Don't be. It's hard but be patient.

PVA claims are a priority of the VA.

Things have changed at the VA since I had to go to Washington DC.
The Gulf War and Iraq War Veterans came home heroes and they
brought political influence with power to make changes at the VA.
Viet Nam Vets did not enjoy the same. But, we do now equally
thanks to the Gulf War and Iraq War and their hero status that
brought changes.

But, the VA has procedures and a list of items that have to be checked off.

As Preacherman wrote... he got his first check and shortly after few months
paid retroactively. In some cases they will pay back to the date of diagnosis
even if you filed a month or two later after diagnosis.

I'm sure it will happen for you... after all the items have been checked off
and any needed verification is complete.
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Old 02-04-2019, 10:42 AM #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: PVA/newly diagnosed

Wow, approved in one day. That was awesome and certainly less stressful.
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Old 02-04-2019, 01:47 PM #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: PVA/newly diagnosed

I am so happy for both of you. I had to say that.

Please re-post your reply above so it will be the last reply again on this
Thread. Maybe one of the Mods can do it.

I don't want anybody skipping over this Thread with me being the last
poster so far.

Last edited by Clearwater AL : 02-04-2019 at 02:19 PM
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