Kentucky Boyle Post 46
Helping others for a better Life!
Veterans Transportation Program - Lexington VA Medical Center
Need a Ride to Your Appointment?
The Veterans Transportation Program is designed to assist veterans seeking treatment at the VAMC with their travel needs. Depending on your location, up to 2 services are available (see the schedule below). 
If you would like to participate in either the Veterans Transportation Service or DAV Volunteer Transportation please review the schedule below and call our coordinators and make arrangements.
·         For Veterans Transportation Service (VTS) please call 859-381-5912
VTS has the capability to transport Veterans who rely on assistance such as wheelchairs, large electric wheelchairs and scooters. 
  
·         For DAV Volunteer Transportation (DAV) please call 859-381-5902
Veterans utilizing the DAV Volunteer Transportation service must be ambulatory (capable of boarding and departing the van without the driver/s aid and attendance).
Areas Served
City Served Pick-Up Location Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
Berea  Cracker Barrel VTS DAV VTS  VTS  NO SERVICE 
Campton  Arby's VTS VTS VTS  VTS  NO SERVICE 
Carlisle  Door to Door VTS DAV  VTS  DAV  NO SERVICE 
Corbin  Cracker Barrel  VTS DAV  VTS VTS NO SERVICE 
Crab Orchard  Redi-Mart Gas Station  VTS VTS  VTS VTS NO SERVICE 
Cynthiana  Walmart  VTS VTS  VTS VTS NO SERVICE 
Danville  McDonalds  VTS VTS VTS VTS NO SERVICE 
Flemingsburg  McDonalds  VTS  VTS & DAV VTS  VTS & DAV NO SERVICE 
Frankfort  Door to Door   VTS & DAV  VTS & DAV   VTS & DAV  VTS & DAV  VTS & DAV
Georgetown  Door to Door   VTS & DAV  VTS & DAV   VTS & DAV   VTS & DAV  VTS & DAV
Harrodsburg  Wendy's  VTS VTS  VTS VTS NO SERVICE 
Hazard  VA Clinic  VTS VTS  VTS VTS NO SERVICE 
Irvine  McDonalds  VTS VTS VTS  VTS NO SERVICE 
Jackson  McDonalds   VTS VTS VTS  VTS NO SERVICE 
Lancaster  McDonalds  VTS VTS VTS  VTS NO SERVICE 
Lawrenceburg  Lee's Famous Recipe  VTS  VTS VTS  VTS NO SERVICE 
Lexington  Door to Door   VTS & DAV  VTS & DAV   VTS & DAV  VTS & DAV   VTS & DAV
London  Cracker Barrel VTS DAV  VTS  VTS NO SERVICE 
Manchester  Walmart  VTS VTS  VTS VTS NO SERVICE 
Maysville  Kmart  VTS DAV  VTS DAV NO SERVICE 
Millersburg  Door to Door  VTS VTS & DAV VTS   VTS & DAV NO SERVICE 
Morehead  VA Clinic  VTS VTS  VTS VTS  VTS
Mt. Sterling  Burger King  VTS VTS  VTS  VTS  VTS
Mt. Vernon  McDonalds  VTS VTS VTS VTS NO SERVICE 
Nicholasville  Door to Door VTS & DAV VTS & DAV   VTS & DAV  VTS & DAV  VTS & DAV
Owingsville  Dairy Queen  VTS VTS VTS VTS  VTS
Paris  Door to Door  VTS  DAV  VTS DAV  VTS
Richmond  Cracker Barrel  VTS & DAV  DAV VTS & DAV VTS NO SERVICE 
Somerset  Kmart  VTS VTS VTS  VTS NO SERVICE 
Stanford  Walmart  VTS VTS VTS VTS NO SERVICE 
Stanton  Hardee's  VTS VTS  VTS VTS NO SERVICE 
Versailles  Door to Door   VTS & DAV   VTS & DAV  VTS & DAV   VTS & DAV  VTS & DAV
Wilmore  Door to Door   VTS & DAV   VTS & DAV   VTS & DAV   VTS & DAV  VTS & DAV 
Winchester  Door to Door   VTS & DAV  VTS & DAV   VTS & DAV   VTS & DAV VTS & DAV
Passenger Rules & Regulations (Partial List)
1)  All riders must be ambulatory (capable of boarding and departing the van without the drivers aid and attendance).
2) The driver is only permitted to stop the van for rest stops and/or emergencies, or to pick up and discharge passengers at designated pick-up points.
3) Passengers are not permitted to use tobacco products, drink alcohol, use foul and offensive language, or bring weapons, drugs, or any other illegal substance or items on the van.
4) Passengers will wear seat belt at all times.
5) It is the responsibility of the veteran to notify the appropriate local coordinator at the numbers above as soon as possible regarding appointments, cancellations, or any other changes.
6) Only articles small enough to be held on the veteran's lap or placed under the seat will be transported on the van.
7) Neither VTS or DAV is an emergency vehicle. The driver has the right to refuse transportation to any passenger whom he/she feels is too ill to ride the van.
7/18/2019

12-1-19

Post 46 Service Officer:  Gene Klaus, gaklaus@msn.com, 989-284-5972   www.kypost46.org

 

Post Service Officers (PSO) from this area meet with Veterans on scheduled Fridays at the Sousley Campus (Leestown Campus) of the Lexington VAMC.  Time: 07:00 to 11:30 Place: Building 28, room 15.  (Building 28 is at the far rear right of the complex.  Enter at South end of building 28 next to loading dock.  Room 15 is last door on right.)  Other times and places are available by arrangement as needed.

 

Meeting schedules for December 2019 and January 2020 are: 12-6, 12-13, 12-20, 1-10, 1-17, 1-24, 1-31.

 

MISSION Act 2018 – Summary

http://va.gov/oei/missionact 

 

The MISSION Act gives Veterans greater access to health care in VA facilities and in the community, expands benefits for caregivers, and improves VA’s ability to recruit and retain the best medical providers.

 

The MISSION Act launched on June 6, 2019.  The Veteran’s CHOICE program was ended at that time and a new Veterans Community Care Program, part of the MISSION Act, began.  Included in the MISSION Act is an Urgent Care option for non-emergent care - the treatment of minor injuries and illnesses.  Veterans call 1-833-483-8669 to verify if they are eligible for this urgent care service. Once eligibility is determined, the Veteran uses the VA provider locator on VA.gov https://www.va.gov/find-locations/ , following the prompts for location of an urgent care provider (be sure to click on the IMPORTANT NOTICE page and print pages to be given to the provider).

 

Veterans may also be eligible for Community Care through a provider in their local community depending on their health care needs or circumstances, and if they meet specific eligibility criteria.  The VA staff will determine eligibility and make Veteran’s appointments with local providers.

 

Veterans may elect Community Care if they meet one of six criteria:

 

1)    A Veteran needs a service the VA cannot provide.

2)    A Veteran lives in a U.S. state or territory without a full-service VAMC.

3)    A Veteran qualifies under the “grandfather” provision related to distance eligibility under the Veterans Choice Program.  The provision is the 40-mile rule.  If true under Choice, it is acceptable under the Mission Act.

4)    VA cannot provide care within designated access standards:  a) 30-minute drive time for primary care, mental health and extended care services, b) 60-minute drive time for specialty care, c) the VA cannot provide general primary or mental health care within 20 days or specialty care within 28 days of request.

5)    The Veteran and the referring clinician agree it is the best medical interest of the Veteran.

6)    VA determines that a VA medical service line is not providing care is a manner that complies with VA’s standards of care.

 

Family caregiver support is be expanded to include those injured in the line of duty before September 10, 2001.  This support will be phased in once the new program is certified.  This support, when expanded, may include a stipend, beneficiary travel, and other benefits.  The Caregiver Support Program website is https://www.caregiver.va.gov/ .

 

The last element of the MISSION ACT is infrastructure improvement.  This element will begin in 2021 and be ongoing.  It will include Veteran, as well as public input.  This will update VA facilities to improve care and to attract/retain medical personnel.

 

The Mission Act is very much a work-in-progress and as such will take years to implement.

Please visit the link in the title above for a more detailed presentation of the MISSION ACT.



Service Officer Tips

11-1-19

Post 46 Service Officer:  Gene Klaus, gaklaus@msn.com, 989-284-5972.

Post Service Officers (PSO) from this area meet with Veterans on scheduled Fridays at the Sousley Campus (Leestown Campus) of the Lexington VAMC.  Time: 07:00 to 11:30 Place: Building 28, room 15.  (Building 28 is at the far rear right of the complex.  Enter at South end of building 28 next to loading dock.  Room 15 is last door on right.)  Other times and places are available by arrangement as needed.

The most common Veteran needs addressed are Disability Benefits (new and appeals), benefit changes, and Surviving Spouse and Dependent Benefits (DIC).

Meeting schedules for November and December 2019 are: 11-1, 11-8, 11-22, 12-6, 12-13, 12-20.

Please email or call Gene Klaus if you have any questions.


Can all Veterans Receive Care at the VA?

There are 18.2 million U.S. military Veterans.  Approximately 9 million of these are treated in one of 170 VAMCs or their 1074 outpatient clinics.  The VA provides this care with an annual budget of approximately $220.2B.

Veterans who desire to receive healthcare at a VA facility must apply.   The application is VA Form 10-10EZ.  The application includes sections on general information, military service, and insurance information.  Additional information, such as dependent information and employment/financial data, may be required. 

 The VA evaluates applications to determine eligibility by the following criteria and/or financial information.   The following classes of Veterans are automatically accepted for care:  former POWs, Purple Heart recipients, those discharged from active duty within the past two (2) years, Medicaid recipients, Vietnam Veterans, Veterans who served in SW Asia between 8/1990 and 11/1998, and those who were stationed at Camp Lejeune USMC base between 8-1-1953 and 12-31-1987.  These categories do not have to provide financial information.  Others are required to provide financial information---sometimes referred to as a “means” test.

So, the answer to the question “Can all Veterans receive care at the VA?” is no.  Veterans in one of the groups described above can automatically receive care.  All others must complete the application with financial information.  Generally, single Veterans who have incomes of > $40,000 per year are not eligible to receive care.  However, those Veterans who are denied care can apply for a Hardship Determination, which takes into account extraordinary events occurring in the Veterans financial life.

Example:   In the past several weeks our area had a Veteran who served in many of the WWII campaigns apply.  He was not wounded and did not receive a Purple Heart.  His retirement income exceeded the maximum for those not in one of the described accepted groups.   However, he had extraordinary non-reimbursed medical expenses due to the illness and death of his wife.  This Veteran is being evaluated now for hardship and will be receiving care.

Who determines the rules for VA patient acceptance?   The Congress of the United States sets all rules and regulations for the VA, including who can and cannot receive care.   The present VA budget of approximately $220.2B is only sufficient the care for approximately 50% of all present U.S. military Veterans.  The budget dollars include all costs of medical care as well as infrastructure maintenance and replacement.


Service Officer Tips

9-1-19

Post 46 Service Officer:  Gene Klaus, gaklaus@msn.com, 989-284-5972.

Post Service Officers (PSO) from this area meet with Veterans on scheduled Fridays at the Sousley Campus (Leestown Campus) of the Lexington VAMC.  Time: 07:00 to 11:30 Place: Building 28, room 15.  (Building 28 is at the far rear right of the complex.  Enter at South end of building 28 next to loading dock.  Room 15 is last door on right.)  Other times and places are available by arrangement as needed.

The most common Veteran needs addressed are Disability Benefits (new and appeals), benefit changes, and Surviving Spouse and Dependent Benefits (DIC).

Meeting schedules for September and October 2019 are: 9-6, 9-13, 9-20, 10-4, 10-18, 10-25, 11-1, 11-8.

Please email or call Gene Klaus if you have any questions.

Overview of the Types of VA Disability Claims and When to File Them

1)  Original claim – file the Veteran’s first claim for disability.

2)  Increased claim - file for increased compensation for an already determined service-connected disability that has gotten worse.  This is to increase your disability rating and to give more financial support.

3)  New claim - file a new claim for added benefits or other benefit request related to an existing service-connected disability.   You can file for more financial support, special monthly payments, or for Unemployability as a result of a disability causing a Veteran to not be able to work.

4)  Secondary service-connected claim -a new claim filed that is linked to a service-connected disability the Veteran already has.  Example:  arthritis that is caused by a service-connected knee injury. 

5)  Special claims - file a claim for special needs linked to your service-connected disability.  Special Claims are in a group by themselves.  They include a) automobile allowance and adaptive equipment, b) clothing damaged by a prosthetic or orthopedic device, c) temporary disability payments if recovering from surgery or other treatment that has left the Veteran unable to move on his own.  Examples: long surgical recovery time, unable to move due to splints or casts, unable to leave your home, or being required to use crutches or a wheelchair, d) dental care.  Dental care is defined by law and determined by your Veteran class.  Example:  A Veteran who has a 100% service-connected disability is eligible for care, e) temporary or increased disability payment if you spent more than 21 days in a hospital for a service-connected disability, f) Individual unemployable as a result of a service-connected disability, g) Title 38-if you suffered an added disability or worsened existing disability as a result of VA carelessness or negligence, and h) a temporary disability rating if you recently ended active military duty and have disability related to your service.

6)  Disabilities that appear within 1 year after military discharge - Examples include: diabetes, hypertension (HBP), arthritis, ulcers, leukemia, and certain cancers.  There are many others.

7)  Pre-discharge claims-Active-duty - personnel can file for service-connected disabilities if within 90 to 180 days of separation.  Examples: claims for injury, loss of body part.

Disability claims can run from relatively simple claims to very complicated ones.   The more pertinent information the Veteran is able to provide the VA with the claim, the more likely the claim will be favorably considered.  Consult with a Service Officer.


Service Officer Tips

8-1-19

Post 46 Service Officer:  Gene Klaus, gaklaus@msn.com, 989-284-5972.

Post Service Officers (PSO) from this area meet with Veterans on scheduled Fridays at the Sousley Campus (Leestown Campus) of the Lexington VAMC.  Time: 07:30 to 11:30 Place: Building 28, room 15.  (Building 28 is at the far right of the complex.  Enter at south end of building 28 next to loading dock.  Room 15 is last door on right.)  Other times and places are available by arrangement as needed.

The most common Veteran needs addressed are Disability Benefits (new and appeals), benefit changes, and Surviving Spouse and Dependent Benefits (DIC).

Meeting schedules for July and August 2019 are: 8-9, 8-16, 9-6, 9-13, 9-20, 10-1, 10-11.

Please email or call Gene Klaus if you have any questions. 


The Blue Water Navy bill, H.R. 299

Update:  VA Secretary Robert Wilkie has delayed implementation of the Blue Water Bill until January 1, 2020 so that the VA can establish processes.  Veterans should apply now so that their application is on file.

Veteran Planning for Survivor Future

The VA has informational products designed to aid Veterans and their family in preparing for the future after the Veteran dies.  The products include information on benefits such as a final resting place for eligible Veterans, spouses, and their eligible dependents, as well as a headstone or marker, a flag to drape the casket, and a Presidential Memorial Certificate.

VA burial benefits are paid to a spouse, designated family member, or executor to partially offset the cost of burial expenses, plot costs, and transportation costs of a Veteran’s remains.  The amounts typically paid at this time are $2,000 for a non-government cemetery, $250 for a government cemetery, and transportation costs for the Veteran’s remains.   (These are subject to change by the Congress.)  There is a 2-year time limit for burial benefit application.

Eligible surviving spouse, dependent children, and/or dependent parents of a deceased Veteran may apply for a Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) benefit.  This a monthly tax-free benefit.  The Veteran must have died of a service-connected illness or injury.  The 2019 base amount is $1319.11 per month and is increased for dependent children or other qualified needs.

If Veteran has a compensation application or appeal in process, a person financially dependent on the Veteran (spouse, dependent child, or dependent parent) may apply as a substitute claimant within 1 year after the death of the Veteran.  Accrued benefits will be paid to the claimant if the Veteran’s original application/appeal is granted.

Other benefits the survivors may apply for include Dependent’s Educational Assistance Program, survivor pension (if not eligible for DIC), special survivor pension due to a mental or physical disability, home loans, and CHAMPVA benefits (health benefits if Veteran 100% disabled).  The 2019 survivor pension is $626.63.

Case study tips:

1)    Observe all given deadlines for needed information.

2)   Observe all deadlines for survivor benefits: 1 yr. for substitute claimant, 2 yr. for burial benefits.

3)    Seek guidance.  The VA paperwork requirements are difficult to meet without assistance.

4)    All DIC and pension payments are calculated based on the survivor’s unique situation.


Service Officer Tips

7-1-19

Post 46 Service Officer:  Gene Klaus, gaklaus@msn.com, 989-284-5972.

Post Service Officers (PSO) from this area meet with Veterans on scheduled Fridays at the Sousley Campus (Leestown Campus) of the Lexington VAMC.  Time: 07:30 to 11:30 Place: Building 28, room 15.  (Building 28 is at the far right of the complex.  Enter at south end of building 28 next to loading dock.  Room 15 is last door on right.)  Other times and places are available by arrangement as needed.

The most common Veteran needs addressed are Disability Benefits (new and appeals), benefit changes, and Surviving Spouse and Dependent Benefits (DIC).

Meeting schedules for July and August 2019 are: 7-12, 7-19, 8-2, 8-9, 8-16, 9-6, and 9-13.

Please email or call Gene Klaus if you have any questions.

 

The Blue Water Navy bill, H.R. 299 is Law!

The president signed H.R.299, the Blue Water Navy bill, into law on Tuesday, June 25, 2019.  This ends a decades long fight by sailors, Marines, and others who served off the coast of Vietnam during the period 1-9-1962 to 5-7-1975.  The law means that they will now get the same presumption as ground troops that certain diseases are connected to Agent Orange exposure.  The new law will make approximately 90,000 additional Veterans eligible for benefits under the law.

In addition, H.R.299 includes Veterans who served on the Korean DMZ during the period 9-1-67 to 8-31-71.  They will also now get the same presumption as ground troops that certain diseases are connected to Agent Orange exposure.  A third group of non-Veterans is included in the law.  Children of Veterans who served in Thailand during the period 1-9-62 to 5-7-75 and who have spinal bifida.  The children will be covered for health care, vocational training and rehabilitation, and monetary allowances.

The VA now has 120 days to submit a plan to Congress explaining how it will implement the new law.  

Veterans and survivors of Veterans eligible under the law need to apply now for benefits.


Veteran Compensation Appeals

The U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims (CAVC) ruled that a lawsuit seeking relief for Veterans who have experienced long decision wait times can move forward.  This is the first time a court has allowed the VA to be sued.  The order requires the VA to review and move forward all Veteran appeals that have been waiting at least 18 months by 10-1-2019, with a progress report to the court by August 12. 


Case study tips:

        1)    Veterans who were stationed at Camp Lejeune for more than 30 days, are eligible for Agent Orange presumption                   diseases.

 2)    Veterans should seek assistance from the VA for medical needs, regardless of income.  Example:  We recently saw     the family of a 96-year-old WWII Veterans who was in need of long-term care.  We were able to assist the family       in with getting the Veteran into a Veteran’s Home close to Lexington.

 3)    Encourage all Vietnam Veterans to seek care at a VA medical center and to apply for compensation.  It is NEVER         TOO LATE!

 4)    Encourage survivors of Veterans to fined out if they are eligible for benefits.


6-1-19

Post 46 Service Officer:  Gene Klaus, gaklaus@msn.com, 989-284-5972.

Post Service Officers (PSO) from this area meet with Veterans on scheduled Fridays at the Sousley Campus (Leestown Campus) of the Lexington VAMC.  Time: 07:30 to 11:30 Place: Building 28, room 15.  (Building 28 is at the far right of the complex.  Enter at south end of building 28 next to loading dock.  Room 15 is last door on right.)  Other times and places are available by arrangement as needed.

The most common Veteran needs addressed are Disability Benefits (new and appeals), benefit changes, and Surviving Spouse and Dependent Benefits (DIC).

Meeting schedules for June and July 2019 are: 6-7, 6-14, 6-28, 7-12, 7-19, 8-2, and 8-9.

Please email or call Gene Klaus if you have any questions.

 

Service Officer Tips

NOTICE:  The Lexington VA will host a town hall meeting with Veterans and their families on June 7, 2019, at 17:30 to 18:30 at VFW 680, 1494 Leestown Rd, Lexington.

Previous Tips discussed applying for VA care, VA benefits as related to service-connected issues, the appeals process, and survivor benefits.  There is often another overlooked benefit for qualified Veterans—pension.

PENSION:

A pension differs from compensation in that it is needs-based assistance.  In general, a Veteran must have served for at least 90 days, with at least one day during a wartime period.  Pensions are paid when any total disability-whether it is service connected or not, leads to the Veteran requiring financial assistance.  The amount paid is a flat amount.  The pension benefit is offset by other income dollar-for-dollar.  Note: Any Veteran over the age of 65 is presumed to be totally disabled for the pension program.  Veterans can apply for a need-based pension, a special monthly pension, or benefits because a child is severely disabled. 

To qualify for a needs-based pension the Veteran’s family income cannot exceed the maximum amount for which he is applying.  (The 2019 family basic pension limit is $20,731, adjusted for medical expenses.)  Total family assets cannot exceed $127,061 for 2019.  A special pension, in addition to the basic pension, may be awarded for home-bound expense or Aid and Attendance, which is designed to assist in covering the cost of a nursing home, assisted living facility, or long-term care facility (a surviving spouse may also receive an amount for long-term care.).   A third pension category is for a child incapable of self-support.  To substantiate such a claim, the evidence must show that the child, before his/her 18th birthday, became permanently incapable of self-support due to a mental or physical disability.  Note:  A special pension may be granted to Veterans who may not be eligible for a basic pension due to excessive income.

It is important for Veterans to understand that any income received must be reported at least annually to the VA for continued pension benefit.  This includes the income of a spouse, should the Veteran marry during the year.  The VA will collect any over-payment directly from a Veteran’s pension or any other compensation received.

A Service Officer can assist with the completion of the multiple documents needed for a pension application.

 

Case study tip:  Promptly reply to all VA inquiries since most have a firm deadline for response.


5-1-19

Post 46 Service Officer: Gene Klaus, gaklaus@msn.com, 989-284-5972.

Post Service Officers (PSO) from this area meet with Veterans on scheduled Fridays at the Sousley Campus (Leestown Campus) of the Lexington VAMC.  Time: 07:30 to 11:30 Place: Building 28, room 15.  (Building 28 is at the far right of the complex.  Enter at south end of building 28 next to loading dock.  Room 15 is last door on right.)  Other times and places are available by arrangement as needed.

The most common Veteran needs addressed are Disability Benefits (new and appeals), benefit changes, and Surviving Spouse and Dependent Benefits (DIC).

Meeting schedule for May, June, and July 2019 are:  5/3, 5/17, 5/24, 6/7, 6/14, 6/28, 7/12, and 7/19.

Please email or call Gene Klaus if you have any questions.


SERVICE OFFICER TIPS

 The previous Tips discussed applying for compensation benefits.  Once the VA makes a compensation decision on the Veterans’ application, the Veteran is notified of the decision.  If the VA grants a benefit, the percentage and amount are presented.  If the decision is a denial, the reasons for the denial are presented.  The Veteran has the right to appeal and should do so.

 Appeals process:

Complete forms sent with the VA decision or meet with a Service Officer to discuss the most appropriate manner in which to appeal. 

 Starting February 2019 there will be two types of appeals:  (1) those appeals that existed prior to   2/14/19 (Legacy Appeals) and (2) new appeals under the Appeals Modernization Process.  Veterans who have appeals in process under the Legacy Appeals Process will continue under that process.

 The new Appeals Modernization Process is designed to make VA decisions more timely, transparent and fair.  If you receive an initial claim decision after February 2019 and you disagree, you can choose one of three new paths to have your disagreement reviewed:  (1) supplemental claim; (2) a higher-level review; or (3) appealing directly to the Board of Veterans’ Appeals. 

 The Supplemental claim process is expected to take 125 days to complete.  This option is taken if there is new and relevant evidence to support the benefit claim. 

 The Higher Level review process is also expected to take 125 days to complete.  This option is taken if there is no new evidence to present.  The review of your claim will be by an experienced claims adjudicator. 

 The path of Appeal to the Board of Veterans’ Appeals can be a lengthy process. The Veteran can have his case directly reviewed by the Board without new evidence or a hearing, submit new evidence without a hearing, or choose to submit new evidence and have a hearing with a Veterans Law judge.

 There are further appeals after any of these processes should the Veteran not agree with the VA’s decision.

 Case study tip:  Veterans need to review their claim when there is any new information.  For example:  A diabetic who changes from oral medication to insulin shots should file for a benefit increase.  




4/1/19

POST 46 SERVICE OFFICER:  Gene Klaus, gaklaus@msn.com, 989-284-5972
Post Service Officers (PSO) from this area meet with Veterans on scheduled Fridays at the Sousley Campus (Leestown Campus) of the Lexington VAMC.  Time:  0730 to 1130; Place:  Building 28, Room 15 (Building 28 is at the far right of the complex.  Enter at south end of building 28 next to loading dock.  Room 15 is last door on right).  Other times and places are available by arrangement as needed.

The most common Veteran needs addressed are Disability Benefits (new and appeals),benefit changes, and Surviving Spouse and Dependent Benefits (DIC).

Meeting schedule for April and May 2019:  4/5, 4/26; 5/3, 5/17, 5/24; 6/7.  Please email or call Gene Klaus if you have any questions.

SERVICE OFFICER TIPS

VA Transportation:  The VA has a van on Wednesdays that comes from the CBOC in Somerset to Lexington - Cooper and Leestown.  Danville Veterans can ride as long as they have clinic appointments between 1000 and 1330.  (Note:  Primary Care Mental Health Clinics are at Leestown.  Specialist Clinics are at Cooper).  Riders must call 859-381-5912 to arrange transport.

The March Service Officer Tips discussed applying for benefits.  What happens once benefits have been requested?  The typical process is as follows:

1)  A qualified Service Officer (SO) sends the Benefit Application to the Regional VA Office (RO).  The RO reviews the application and sends an acknowledgement letter to the Veteran.
2)  A C&P (Compensation and Pension) examination is ordered by the RO.  This is a detailed medical examination to determin the medical condition of the Veteran.
3)  The RO reviews the C&P examination results and all supporting documentation submitted with the Benefit Application.  Additional information may be requested from the Veteran.
4)  A decision is made concerning the benefits requested.  The RO will either grant a benefit or deny a benefit.  The decision is sent to the Veteran, along with a detailed explanation of the decision and the process for a decision appeal.
5)  The Veteran has one year to appeal the RO decision, after which, the decision becomes final.  The Veteran appeals through a Service Officer or by completing the forms the RO sends with the benefit determination.

How long does the process take?  The process typically takes from 4 months to 18 months or more.  Any benefit granted is effective from the date of the original application.

What can the Veteran do to help the process?  The Veteran can:
1)  Ensure that his/her address and contact information are current.  Changes must be reported as soon as possible to the VA.
2)  Sign up for Ebenefits at www.ebenefits.va.gov.  This will enable the Veteran to closely follow the benefit process and to upload information relevant to his/her claim.  
3)  The Veteran can contact the National Call Center for an in-depth explanation of questions concerning his/her benefit application by calling 1-800-827-1000.
4)  Sign up for myhealthevet at www.myhealth.va.gov.  

This is an abbreviated explanation of the C&P process.  Please contact a Service Officer for more detail.


2/28/19
POST 46 SERVICE OFFICER:  Gene Klaus, gaklaus@msn.com, 989-284-5972
Post Service Officers (PSO) from this area meet with Veterans on scheduled Fridays at the Sousley Campus (Leestown Campus) of the Lexington VAMC.  Time: 0700-1130; Place: Building 28, Room 15.  Enter at the south end of building next to loading dock.  Room 15 is the last door on right.  Other times and places are available as needed.  The most common Veteran needs addressed are Disability Benefits (new and appeals), Pension Benefits, and Surviving Spouse and Dependent Benefits (DIC).

Meeting schedule for March and April 2019:  3/1, 3/8, 3/15, 3/29; 4/5, 4/26, 5/3
Please email or call Mr. Klaus if you have any questions.

SERVICE OFFICER TIPS

How does a Veteran become a VA Patient?

1)  The first step is to visit www.va.gov and select VA Benefits and Health Care from the drop down menu.  You may also meet with a Service Officer or call 877-222-8387 to talk with a VA representative.  The Service Office will assist with your application and also assist you with applying for disability benefits if that is indicated.  There are several categories of patients.  For example, those who have just finished a 12-month combat tour, Vietnam Veterans (served "in country"), Purple Heart recipient, or those who receive Medicaid.

2)  Once the required application is completed, the Veteran can either mail the document or take it to a VA medical center.  VA medical centers can be found at www.va.gov.  You will need to provide the following:  (a) a copy of both sides of your current insurance card (including Medicare and Medicaid); (b) a copy of your DD214 "Armed Forces Report of Transfer or Discharge;" and (c) Purple Heart recipients only: a copy of your award letter if "Purple Heart" is not noted on the DD214.

3)  The telephone number of the Health Benefits Center (eligibility office) of the Lexington VAMC is 859-233-4511, ext. 4948 or 859-281-4948.  The eligibility office is located in Bldg. 1, Leestown Campus, 2550 Leestown Rd, Lexington KY 40511.

How does a Veteran submit a claim?

1)  A claim may be submitted by the Veteran on www.va.gov, select "VA Benefits and Health Care" from the drop down menu, and then select "Disability."  Complete the application and mail it and all supporting documents to the indicated application location. 

2)  The Veteran can also meet with a Service Officer who will complete the application with the Veteran and submit it on his/her behalf.  The Service Officer will assist with the initial application and any subsequent appeals should the claim be denied.

3)  Documentation needed is any claim application:
     a)  All medical records from non-government providers
     b)  DD214
     c)  Banking information to include account number, bank name, and routing number.

Claim progress can be monitored by completing an account on www.ebenefits.va.gov.

NOTE:  Any qualified Veteran can apply for benefits.  The VA evaluates each application on an individual basis.