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Old 05-23-2008, 07:45   #1
OttoGudd
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VA screws over combat vets.......again

Official Urged Fewer Diagnoses of PTSD

By Christopher Lee
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, May 16, 2008; Page A02

A psychologist who helps lead the post-traumatic stress disorder program at a medical facility for veterans in Texas told staff members to refrain from diagnosing PTSD because so many veterans were seeking government disability payments for the condition. "Given that we are having more and more compensation seeking veterans, I'd like to suggest that you refrain from giving a diagnosis of PTSD straight out," Norma Perez wrote in a March 20 e-mail to mental-health specialists and social workers at the Department of Veterans Affairs' Olin E. Teague Veterans' Center in Temple, Tex. Instead, she recommended that they "consider a diagnosis of Adjustment Disorder."
VA staff members "really don't . . . have time to do the extensive testing that should be done to determine PTSD," Perez wrote.

Adjustment disorder is a less severe reaction to stress than PTSD and has a shorter duration, usually no longer than six months, said Anthony T. Ng, a psychiatrist and member of Mental Health America, a nonprofit professional association.

Veterans diagnosed with PTSD can be eligible for disability compensation of up to $2,527 a month, depending on the severity of the condition, said Alison Aikele, a VA spokeswoman. Those found to have adjustment disorder generally are not offered such payments, though veterans can receive medical treatment for either condition.

Perez's e-mail was obtained and released publicly yesterday by VoteVets.org, a veterans group that has been critical of the Bush administration's policies in Iraq and Afghanistan, and Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), a nonprofit government watchdog group.

"Many veterans believe that the government just doesn't want to pay out the disability that comes along with a PTSD diagnosis, and this revelation will not allay their concerns," John Soltz, chairman of VoteVets.org and an Iraq war veteran, said in a statement.

Melanie Sloan, executive director of CREW, said in a statement: "It is outrageous that the VA is calling on its employees to deliberately misdiagnose returning veterans in an effort to cut costs. Those who have risked their lives serving our country deserve far better."

Veterans Affairs Secretary James B. Peake said in a statement that Perez's e-mail was "inappropriate" and does not reflect VA policy. It has been "repudiated at the highest level of our health care organization," he said.
"VA's leadership will strongly remind all medical staff that trust, accuracy and transparency is paramount to maintaining our relationships with our veteran patients," Peake said.

Peake said Perez has been "counseled" and is "extremely apologetic." Aikele said Perez remains in her job.

A Rand Corp. report released in April found that repeated exposure to combat stress in Iraq and Afghanistan is causing a disproportionately high psychological toll compared with physical injuries. About 300,000 U.S. military personnel who have served in Iraq or Afghanistan are suffering from PTSD or major depression, the study found. The economic cost to the United States -- including medical care, forgone productivity and lost lives through suicide -- is expected to reach $4 billion to $6 billion over two years.

Ng said diagnosing PTSD often requires observing a patient for weeks or months because the condition implies a long, lingering effect of stress.
"Most people exposed to trauma, in general, can get better," Ng said. "You don't want to over-diagnose people with PTSD. Whether it's adjustment disorder is one thing. It's usually a temporary disorder with severity that is not as bad as someone with full-blown PTSD."
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Old 05-26-2008, 20:04   #2
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it has never changed my friend. it was that bad back in my day, 70's, and it still is that way.

The VA is given the job of honoring the promises of the country but is given nothing with which to honor the promises with. Look up "bonus soldiers" and see what they used to do! I have never trusted the VA and will never trust the VA even if it means I go without treatment.
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veteran - whether active duty, retired, national guard or reserve - is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to "The United States of America", for an amount of "up to and including my life." That is honor, and there are way too many people in this country who no longer understand it. -- Author Unknown
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Old 05-26-2008, 20:22   #3
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*sigh* Wonderful...****ing wonderful...I just love being **** on all the time, how about you guys?





drew
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There's one less tornado in Texas, a saddle is empty tonight...There's one hell of a cowboy in heaven, at the big rodeo in the sky. RIP LCpl Blake Wafford, Spc. Devon Gibbons, PFC Dean Bright, SSg Brian Craig. In the field we had a code of honor: you watch my back, I watch yours. Back here there's NOTHING.
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Old 05-26-2008, 22:11   #4
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I have thought of going through VA for treatment for things. But, I don't think I entirely trust them. With them, if you seek an alternative diagnosis for things outside of their system, they tend to get a case of bad attitude with a person. I do hope things work out for the current war veterans as well as others in need.
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Old 05-26-2008, 23:22   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deadday View Post
*sigh* Wonderful...****ing wonderful...I just love being **** on all the time, how about you guys?





drew
Bud you know how I feel about vets, and my words still stand.


I draw the line at massages though, that'd be a little fruity no matter how you tried to play it.
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Old 05-27-2008, 00:03   #6
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Down grading a medical condition to save benefits payouts! Say it isn't so?

Asshat needs fired.
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Old 05-27-2008, 00:14   #7
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Please Bear In Mind That-

Quote:
Originally Posted by OttoGudd View Post
Official Urged Fewer Diagnoses of PTSD

By Christopher Lee
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, May 16, 2008; Page A02

A psychologist who helps lead the post-traumatic stress disorder program at a medical facility for veterans in Texas told staff members to refrain from diagnosing PTSD because so many veterans were seeking government disability payments for the condition. "Given that we are having more and more compensation seeking veterans, I'd like to suggest that you refrain from giving a diagnosis of PTSD straight out," Norma Perez wrote in a March 20 e-mail to mental-health specialists and social workers at the Department of Veterans Affairs' Olin E. Teague Veterans' Center in Temple, Tex. Instead, she recommended that they "consider a diagnosis of Adjustment Disorder."
VA staff members "really don't . . . have time to do the extensive testing that should be done to determine PTSD," Perez wrote.

Adjustment disorder is a less severe reaction to stress than PTSD and has a shorter duration, usually no longer than six months, said Anthony T. Ng, a psychiatrist and member of Mental Health America, a nonprofit professional association.

Veterans diagnosed with PTSD can be eligible for disability compensation of up to $2,527 a month, depending on the severity of the condition, said Alison Aikele, a VA spokeswoman. Those found to have adjustment disorder generally are not offered such payments, though veterans can receive medical treatment for either condition.

Perez's e-mail was obtained and released publicly yesterday by VoteVets.org, a veterans group that has been critical of the Bush administration's policies in Iraq and Afghanistan, and Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), a nonprofit government watchdog group.

"Many veterans believe that the government just doesn't want to pay out the disability that comes along with a PTSD diagnosis, and this revelation will not allay their concerns," John Soltz, chairman of VoteVets.org and an Iraq war veteran, said in a statement.

Melanie Sloan, executive director of CREW, said in a statement: "It is outrageous that the VA is calling on its employees to deliberately misdiagnose returning veterans in an effort to cut costs. Those who have risked their lives serving our country deserve far better."

Veterans Affairs Secretary James B. Peake said in a statement that Perez's e-mail was "inappropriate" and does not reflect VA policy. It has been "repudiated at the highest level of our health care organization," he said.
"VA's leadership will strongly remind all medical staff that trust, accuracy and transparency is paramount to maintaining our relationships with our veteran patients," Peake said.

Peake said Perez has been "counseled" and is "extremely apologetic." Aikele said Perez remains in her job.

A Rand Corp. report released in April found that repeated exposure to combat stress in Iraq and Afghanistan is causing a disproportionately high psychological toll compared with physical injuries. About 300,000 U.S. military personnel who have served in Iraq or Afghanistan are suffering from PTSD or major depression, the study found. The economic cost to the United States -- including medical care, forgone productivity and lost lives through suicide -- is expected to reach $4 billion to $6 billion over two years.

Ng said diagnosing PTSD often requires observing a patient for weeks or months because the condition implies a long, lingering effect of stress.
"Most people exposed to trauma, in general, can get better," Ng said. "You don't want to over-diagnose people with PTSD. Whether it's adjustment disorder is one thing. It's usually a temporary disorder with severity that is not as bad as someone with full-blown PTSD."
A PTSD diagnosis may full well eliminate a Vets right to own firearms!
Things to ponder when one decides to claim metal disability
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Old 05-27-2008, 07:14   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rabbit Creek View Post
A PTSD diagnosis may full well eliminate a Vets right to own firearms!
Things to ponder when one decides to claim metal disability

No it won't.







drew
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There's one less tornado in Texas, a saddle is empty tonight...There's one hell of a cowboy in heaven, at the big rodeo in the sky. RIP LCpl Blake Wafford, Spc. Devon Gibbons, PFC Dean Bright, SSg Brian Craig. In the field we had a code of honor: you watch my back, I watch yours. Back here there's NOTHING.
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Old 05-27-2008, 08:22   #9
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No it won't.







drew
how so?
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Old 06-03-2008, 16:09   #10
Meat-Hook
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Originally Posted by Rabbit Creek
A PTSD diagnosis may full well eliminate a Vets right to own firearms!
Things to ponder when one decides to claim metal disability

No it won't.
*********************

http://www.gunowners.org/a122007.htm

Gun Owners Get Stabbed In The Back
-- Veterans Disarmament Act on its way to the President

Gun Owners of America
8001 Forbes Place, Suite 102
Springfield, VA 22151
(703)321-8585

"To me, this is the best Christmas present I could ever receive" -- Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY), CBS News, December 20, 2007

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Gun Owners of America and its supporters took a knife in the back yesterday, as Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) out-smarted his congressional opposition into agreeing on a so-called "compromise" on HR 2640 -- a bill which now goes to the President's desk.

The bill -- known as the Veterans Disarmament Act to its opponents -- is being praised by the National Rifle Association and the Brady Campaign.

The Brady Bunch crowed "Victory! U.S. Congress Strengthens Brady Background Check System." The NRA stated that last minute changes to the McCarthy bill made a "good bill even better [and that] the end product is a win for American gun owners."

But Gun Owners of America has issued public statements decrying this legislation.

The core of the bill's problems is section 101(c)(1)(C), which makes you a "prohibited person" on the basis of a "medical finding of disability," so long as a veteran had an "opportunity" for some sort of "hearing" before some "lawful authority" (other than a court). Presumably, this "lawful authority" could even be the psychiatrist himself.

Note that unlike with an accused murderer, the hearing doesn't have to occur. The "lawful authority" doesn't have to be unbiased. The veteran is not necessarily entitled to an attorney -- much less an attorney financed by the government.

So what do the proponents have to say about this?

ARGUMENT: The Veterans Disarmament Act creates new avenues for prohibited persons to seek restoration of their gun rights.

ANSWER: What the bill does is to lock in -- statutorily -- huge numbers of additional law-abiding Americans who will now be denied the right to own a firearm.

And then it "graciously" allows these newly disarmed Americans to spend tens of thousands of dollars for a long-shot chance to regain the gun rights this very bill takes away from them.

More to the point, what minimal gains were granted by the "right hand" are taken away by the "left." Section 105 provides a process for some Americans diagnosed with so-called mental disabilities to get their rights restored in the state where they live. But then, in subsection (a)(2), the bill stipulates that such relief may occur only if "the person will not be likely to act in a manner dangerous to public safety and that the GRANTING OF THE RELIEF WOULD NOT BE CONTRARY TO THE PUBLIC INTEREST." (Emphasis added.)

Um, doesn't this language sound similar to those state codes (like California's) that have "may issue" concealed carry laws -- where citizens "technically" have the right to carry, but state law only says that sheriffs MAY ISSUE them a permit to carry? When given such leeway, those sheriffs usually don't grant the permits!

Prediction: liberal states -- the same states that took these people's rights away -- will treat almost every person who has been illegitimately denied as a danger to society and claim that granting relief would be "contrary to the public interest."

Let's make one thing clear: the efforts begun during the Clinton Presidency to disarm battle-scarred veterans -- promoted by the Brady Anti-Gun Campaign -- is illegal and morally reprehensible.

But section 101(c)(1)(C) of HR 2640 would rubber-stamp those illegal actions. Over 140,000 law-abiding veterans would be statutorily barred from possessing firearms.

True, they can hire a lawyer and beg the agency that took their rights away to voluntarily give them back. But the agency doesn't have to do anything but sit on its hands. And, after 365 days of inaction, guess what happens? The newly disarmed veteran can spend thousands of additional dollars to sue. And, as the plaintiff, the wrongly disarmed veteran has the burden of proof.

Language proposed by GOA would have automatically restored a veteran's gun rights if the agency sat on its hands for a year. Unfortunately, the GOA amendment was not included.

The Veterans Disarmament Act passed the Senate and the House yesterday -- both times WITHOUT A RECORDED VOTE. That is, the bill passed by Unanimous Consent, and was then transmitted to the White House.

Long-time GOA activists will remember that a similar "compromise" deal helped the original Brady Law get passed. In 1993, there were only two or three senators on the floor of that chamber who used a Unanimous Consent agreement (with no recorded vote) to send the Brady bill to President Clinton -- at a time when most legislators had already left town for their Thanksgiving Break.

Gun owners can go to http://www.gunowners.org/news/nws9402.htm to read about how this betrayal occurred 14 years ago.

With your help, Gun Owners of America has done a yeoman's job of fighting gun control over the years, considering the limited resources that we have. Together, we were able to buck the Brady Campaign/NRA coalition in 1999 (after the Columbine massacre) and were able to defeat the gun control that was proposed in the wake of that shooting.

Yesterday, we were not so lucky. But we are not going to go away. GOA wants to repeal the gun-free zones that disarm law-abiding Americans and repeal the other gun restrictions that are on the books. That is the answer to Virginia Tech. Unfortunately, the House and Senate chose the path of imposing more gun control.

So our appeal to you is this -- please help us to grow this coming year. Please help us to get more members and activists. If you add $10 to your membership renewal this year, we can reach new gun owners in the mail and tell them about GOA.

Please urge your friends to join GOA... and, at the very least, make sure they sign up for our free e-mail alerts so that we can mobilize more gun owners than ever before!

Home

Join or Support GOA
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Old 06-09-2008, 10:55   #11
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Jeez, I thought we were done seeing that disingenuous piece of "writing" from the GoA over the NICS Improvement Act.


Actual bill text

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Old 06-09-2008, 10:58   #12
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All VAMC's are not alike, and all VA staff are not like the indiv depicted in the article.
They are hopelessly outnumbered (by veterans like us) and radically underfunded.
If you care insure your elected officials know that you consider proper resourcing of the VA a deal-breaker for you in your voting decision.



And I know I'll get a krapstorm for it, but not every difficulty adjusting coming out of, or moving through, a harsh experience or a difficult situation is clinical PTSD.
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Old 06-22-2008, 01:27   #13
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Jeez, I thought we were done seeing that disingenuous piece of "writing" from the GoA over the NICS Improvement Act.
----------

"Disingenuous".?

Hardly.

Youre "assuming" that during this un-tested time period that this brand new
law takes effect,...that the NRA is right. And that GOA is wrong.

Only time will tell.

If its up to shrinks to determine the status of someones present day mental health. Look out.

I think past and present history may prove that shrinks are *NOT* known for their pro-gun, pro-conservative beliefs. Quite the opposite.

Present day hoard of doctors/shrinks/nurses are more commonly known for
their ANTI-gun agendas. Not the other way around. If you are prescribed or described with a mental health issue. And god forbid,...prescribed with a mind//mood-altering "prescription" drug to treat your PTSD. Then under most if not all State laws, ect,...you cannot operate a firearm. Or worse.

What shrinks ((and anybody who deals with the public)) worries about is "Liability". I "said" he was mentally Okay to keep owning the guns that he already had and will buy in the future after he leaves my hospital".

But then looked what happened?...........he went "postal". He went out and did a "Columbine". Ect,...ect,..ect. THATS, what shrinks worry about. Here he is a Veteran with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. He knew that as a shrink,.. and STILL, he let him go with guns?.

Oh, no..no..no!. Huge liability.

So good luck. Roll the dice in the Las Vegas of polotics and hope for
the best. The roulette ball of chance/happenstance is rolling around-and-around-and-around. Where she goes nobody knows. But if you loose, what have you got to loose?

Answer: Lets see? your guns.
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Old 06-22-2008, 23:09   #14
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I’m not going to try to defend the VA and they should treat every case on an individual basis but PTSD is being claimed by just about everyone. When I was recovering at Pensacola NH I was SNCOIC of the floor. One of my duties was to make sure that the guys going up for their boards were squared away and had their med records and SRBs. I saw several guys who hadn’t even been in country have their “stressor letter” all ready to go for their PTSD claim. I can only imagine what these guys try to pull on civies.
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Old 06-22-2008, 23:14   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marine8541 View Post
I’m not going to try to defend the VA and they should treat every case on an individual basis but PTSD is being claimed by just about everyone. When I was recovering at Pensacola NH I was SNCOIC of the floor. One of my duties was to make sure that the guys going up for their boards were squared away and had their med records and SRBs. I saw several guys who hadn’t even been in country have their “stressor letter” all ready to go for their PTSD claim. I can only imagine what these guys try to pull on civies.
Unfortunately that is fairly common-place, and they are ****ing up the system for the rest of us...




drew
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There's one less tornado in Texas, a saddle is empty tonight...There's one hell of a cowboy in heaven, at the big rodeo in the sky. RIP LCpl Blake Wafford, Spc. Devon Gibbons, PFC Dean Bright, SSg Brian Craig. In the field we had a code of honor: you watch my back, I watch yours. Back here there's NOTHING.
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