Wednesday, September 29, 2010

VA Publishes Final Regulation on "Presumptive" Illnesses For Gulf War .

Where is IBS ,Immune System Diseases, ALS, Fibmyalgia, to name a few ?

 I think it falls short but its a step in right direction. Here is press release from VA

VA Publishes Final Regulation on "Presumptive" Illnesses

for Gulf War and Iraq, Afghanistan Veterans

WASHINGTON (September 28, 2010) - Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K.
Shinseki today announced the publication of a final regulation in the
Federal Register that makes it easier for Veterans to obtain Department
of Veterans Affairs (VA) health care and disability compensation for
certain diseases associated with service in Southwest Asia (including
Iraq) or Afghanistan.

"This is part of historic changes in how VA considers Gulf War Veterans'
illnesses," said Secretary Shinseki. "By setting up scientifically based
presumptions of service connection, we give these deserving Veterans a
simple way to obtain the medical and compensation benefits they earned
in service to our country."

The final regulation establishes new presumptions of service connection
for nine specific infectious diseases associated with military service
in Southwest Asia beginning on or after the start of the first Gulf War
on Aug. 2, 1990, through the conflict in Iraq and on or after Sept. 19,
2001, in Afghanistan.

The final regulation reflects a determination of a positive association
between service in Southwest Asia or Afghanistan and nine diseases and
includes information about the long-term health effects potentially
associated with these diseases: Brucellosis, Campylobacter jejuni,
Coxiella Burnetii (Q fever), Malaria, Mycobacterium tuberculosis,
Nontyphoid Salmonella, Shigella, Visceral leishmaniasis and West Nile

With the final rule, a Veteran will only have to show service in
Southwest Asia or Afghanistan and that he or she had one of the nine
diseases within a certain time after service and has a current
disability as a result of that disease, subject to certain time limits
for seven of the diseases.  Most of these diseases would be diagnosed
within one year of return from service, through some conditions may
manifest at a later time.

 For non-presumptive conditions, a Veteran is required to provide
medical evidence to establish an actual connection between military
service in Southwest Asia or Afghanistan and a specific disease.

The decision to add these presumptives was made after reviewing the 2006
report of the National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine
(NASIOM), titled, "Gulf War and Health Volume 5: Infectious Diseases."

The 2006 report differed from the four prior reports by looking at the
long-term health effects of certain diseases determined to be pertinent
to Gulf War Veterans.  Secretary Shinseki decided to include Afghanistan
Veterans in these presumptions because NAS found that the nine diseases
are also prevalent in that country.

The 1998 Persian Gulf War Veterans Act requires the Secretary to review
NAS reports that study scientific information and possible associations
between illnesses and exposure to toxic agents by Veterans who served in
the Persian Gulf War.

While the decision to add the nine new presumptives predates VA's Gulf
War Veterans' Illnesses Task Force (GWVI-TF), the overarching
responsibility of the GWVI-TF is to regain Gulf War Veterans' confidence
in VA's health care, benefits, and services and reconfirm VA is 100
percent committed to Veterans of all eras.  The GWVI-TF began in fall
2009 and is not a static, one-time initiative but will continue to build
on its work with annual reports issued every August.  The group's focus
centers on unanswered Gulf War Veterans' health issues, improving access
to benefits, ensuring cutting edge research into treatments, and to make
sure Veterans' concerns are heard and addressed.  This includes
continuing to solicit Veterans, experts, advocates and stakeholders to
share their views to better inform the important work of the GWVI-TF.
The GWVI-TF Report can be found at

Disability compensation is a non-taxable monetary benefit paid to
Veterans who are disabled as a result of an injury or illness that was
incurred or aggravated during active military service.

Last year, VA received more than one million claims for disability
compensation and pension.  VA provides compensation and pension benefits
to over 3.8 million Veterans and beneficiaries.

Currently, the basic monthly rate of compensation ranges from $123 to
$2,673 for Veterans without any dependents.

For information about health problems associated with military service
in Southwest Asia and Afghanistan, and related VA programs, go to and

1 comment:

  1. Thank you Sean, helpful info for all of us that are going through a disability and facing VA and their difficult procedures.- JEK


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