Veterans-For-Change NEWSLETTER

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Week Ending Sunday, June 10, 2018

Volume 9, Issue 23



I’ve spoken a couple of times about Autistics and the Service, and while we are continuing to dig for more and more information.

This effort is two part, one to find out more information to help Veterans who served with Autism and possibly help with gaining benefits earned they may not even know they qualify for, and to help them also find work that maintains guidance, direction and structure with organizations such as AFOA (Autistic Farmers of America.

I have read several pieces where some had gone through programs such as ROTC (Recruit Officer Training Corps), some have gone on to serve, some faced a few challenges, but seems most were accepted into the military, gone on and served well, and a very few have been discharged after having completed boot camp and an even smaller amount have gone on to assignments over sears, and returned and been discharged.

There really isn’t a great deal of information in this area and it seems the military doesn’t keep records on issues of this nature. So we’re still looking for more first hand information.

But connecting those who served with organizations such as Autistic Farmers of America is the end goal.

LT Bobby Ross and I have been working together for some time now, Bobby is the Executive Director of AFOA with a farm based in Northern California.

One of our goals has been getting gainful employment for Veterans regardless of their status and abilities.

The VA Board of Appeals has announced they have resolved a record number of claims up to May 27th of this year, 53,650, but it doesn’t say how many were approved nor how many were denied, and they go on to announce they plan on resolving yet another 81,000 by September 30th.

Seems to me this is another “sweep” to clear the records, and most were denied. So this shows me absolutely no signs of improvement, just a clearing of the decks.

If you were a Veteran whose claim went before the BVA and were denied, I’d like to hear from you as well!

Again we really need everyone’s help with is the Blue Water Navy Bill, H.R. 299.

We need everyone to call their Congressman both in their local and DC offices and ask for their support when the bill comes to the floor that they vote yes for this bill!

And again, I want to thank both Regina and Peggy for all the hours they have spent digging, reading, and downloading documents, articles, and reports on Autism and Asperger Syndrome, thank you for all your hard work!

On behalf of our Volunteers nationwide and myself, we wish you and your family good health!

Jim Davis


TREA Meets with Armed Forces Retirement Home Leadership

Two weeks ago TREA met with Major General (Ret.) Stephen Rippe and his leadership team at the Armed Forces Retirement Home (AFRH) in Washington, DC. TREA was represented by Deputy Legislative Director Mike Saunders.

It was announced in early April that income-based fees would be raised on residents of the Armed Forces Retirement Homes, both in Washington, DC and in Gulfport, Mississippi. Naturally, this caused an uproar among the residents. Some of the fee increases will be up to 114 percent.

The fee increases were brought on by two things: years of financial mismanagement which led to the appointment of MG Rippe to replace the old leadership team at the end of last year, and an unwillingness to raise the .50 cent fee that is levied from every enlisted servicemember’s paycheck. The second problem was recently fixed by the Senior Enlisted leaders of the five armed services. They had resisted authorizing the fee hike, which Congress had lifted to $1 back in 2010, until the financial practices at AFRH were improved.

MG Rippe has done, in TREA’s opinion, an outstanding job of closing the $22 million budget deficit at AFRH that he inherited. That being said, if the .50 cent paycheck levy had been indexed to inflation when it was authorized way back in 1976, then the dramatic fee hikes that have sparked so much media attention would never have been needed.

With development plans in place to recapitalize the diminished AFRH trust fund, TREA is confident in the future of the AFRH. Therefore, we call on Congress to work with AFRH leadership to ease the momentary burden on residents by appropriating enough money to cover the budget shortfall this year. We will be writing letters to the appropriate committees of Congress to that end.

Source: TREA


Commissary, Exchange Merger Plans Advance

Deputy Defense Secretary Patrick M. Shanahan has directed that a task force be formed by July 1 to develop a business case for consolidating the military’s three separate exchange services, and the Defense Commissary Agency, into a single resale enterprise to oversee and streamline all on-base store operations. Read the full article.

Remember Those who Served

Join TRICARE for June 12 Q&A Facebook Event

Do you have questions about Qualifying Life Events (QLEs)? Not sure how QLEs can affect your TRICARE options? Here’s your chance to get some answers. Join TRICARE on Tuesday, June 12 at 3:15 p.m. (ET) for a live Q&A session on the TRICARE Facebook page.

Read the full article here.


How To Start the VA Loan Process: 6 Easy Steps

Now that you’ve determined that you’re eligible for a VA home loan (if you aren’t sure, please check your VA loan eligibility), you can begin the loan application process. This process involves six important steps: finding a VA-approved lender, pre-qualifying for a loan, selecting your home, drawing up the purchase contract, getting the property appraised by the VA, and finalizing the loan. For a guide to these steps, see this article.

VFC Website

The Veterans-For-Change website has been under construction since day one back in 2009 and every day since then. The looks pretty much stay the same, but in the background constant improvement and change is being done to make our website the most user friendly “One-Stop-Shop” website to find almost everything you might have tried to find searching the internet.

Almost a hundred people have been involved; collecting web links to documents now houses on the VFC website, collecting thousands of web links for various issues, illnesses and benefits. Creating forums for all eras of service and two forums one just for men and one just for woman where you can go question, comment, share medical and personal concerns, what ever you’d like it to be.

We also have a forum with a licensed Mental Health Worker, again where you can seek help or just ask questions.

We average 2,100 hits per day, and downloads average 1,200 per day with a total 4,111,859visitors as of Friday.

If you subscribe you will have full access to the entire website and best of all it’s FREE of charge! You just need a valid E-mail address so the system can send you a confirmation E-Mail. Once received, click on the link to be authorized automatically.

• Documents Library with over 16,411 documents on-line (Updated: 06/08/18)
• FAQ’s with more than 1,600 FAQ’s and answers
• Multiple Forums
o Afghanistan Veterans
o FMP – Foreign Medial Program
o Gulf War & Desert Storm Veterans
o Iraq Veterans
o Korean Veterans
o Men Veterans Forum
o Mental Health for Veterans (Counselor Needed)
o Political Issues
o Suggestion Box
o The Mess Hall
o VA Hospitals and Medical Centers
o Veteran Affairs
o Vietnam Veterans
o Welcome Mat
o Women Veterans Forum
o WW II Veterans
• Job Postings
• Memorial Pages (Updated: 01/11/18)
• News (Articles On-Line: 7,402)
• Polls
• Web Links, more than 3,654, Added 9 New Links (Updated: 05/27/18)

If you have a submission for the memorial pages, E-Mail:

Heroic Service

Emergency Medical Bill Claims Update – Actions to Take After Receiving Care

Once a Veteran’s immediate emergency medical care needs have been addressed, the Veteran, a family member, friend, or hospital staff member should contact the nearest VA medical facility within 72-hours. Once notified, VA staff will assist the Veteran and/or his/her representatives in understanding eligibility and how eligibility relates to services rendered in the community. VA staff will also ensure that, if desired, the Veteran is transferred to a VA medical center upon stabilization and that the Veteran is set up to receive additional care, post discharge, without interruption. Important: When a Veteran receives emergency medical care, notifying VA as quickly as possible is always best. It ensures maximum VA coverage and assists VA in providing the Veteran the care they need.

Filing a Claim
Claims for emergency medical care should be submitted to VA as soon as possible after care has been provided. The deadline for filing a claim depends on whether care was provided for a service-connected condition or a non-service-connected condition. Following describes the requirements, how to file a claim, and payment rates:

• Service-Connected Condition — Claim must be submitted to VA within two (2) years of the date emergency medical care was received. However, filing the claim as soon as possible after care has been provided is highly recommended because it helps make sure that all required documentation is readily available and that providers receive their payment in a timely manner.
• Non-service-Connected Condition — Claim must be submitted to VA within 90 days of the date of discharge, or 90 days from the date that all attempts to receive required payments from a liable third party are completed and not successful in eliminating the Veteran’s personal liability to the provider. A liable third party includes an other health insurer, worker’s compensation, civil litigation, etc.
• Veterans or their personal representatives may file a claim for reimbursement of emergency treatment costs that they have incurred and paid to the provider. In this situation, Veterans should obtain and submit all related treatment and billing records to the closest VA medical facility. In most cases, providers will submit a claim directly to VA, and the Veteran will not have to take further action. Submit claims for services not pre-authorized by VA to the VA medical facility closest to where the emergent treatment was provided.
• Submission must include a standard billing form (such as a CMS 1450 or CMS 1500), containing false claims notice. Submit claims via Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) transaction (such as an 837I or 837P). Documentation related to the medical care may be required prior to claim processing.
• Generally, 100% Medicare rates for service-connected conditions are paid. Generally, for non-service-connected conditions, 70% of Medicare payments rates will be paid.

Receiving Payment from VA
Once a claim for emergency treatment is received by VA, the claim will be administratively reviewed to determine Veteran eligibility. If the Veteran meets the administrative eligibility criteria to receive emergency care in the community, the treatment documentation will then be reviewed by VA clinical staff to determine if the treatment received meets the clinical criteria necessary for VA to pay for the care. VA makes every effort to adjudicate claims for emergency treatment quickly and accurately. When further information or clarification is needed by VA, claims processing may be delayed. If a Veteran is charged for emergency care received in the community and believes the charges should be covered by VA, they should contact the nearest VA medical facility as soon as possible. VA staff will assist the Veteran in understanding eligibility and in determining whether the bill received is appropriate. VA will assist the Veteran and work to resolve any billing issues with the community provider. For additional information, please reach out to the nearest VA medical center responsible for processing the claims.


Stop Wasting Money on Co-Pays & Rx Costs with a TRICARE Supplement

Get a TRICARE supplement that pays your cost shares and can pay 100% of covered excess charges. Get valuable coverage now.


The Fisherman


Remember this site is an Internet Adventure. All you need do is click on the pictures and any highlighted word, and you are launched to another world in Cyberspace. Try it! So much fun!

Sam Jones Gen Store

New Presidential Order: Give More Federal Jobs to Spouses

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