Thousands of vets missing out on better benefits
Posted by defensebaseactcomp on April 6, 2010
By Associated Press on Apr 2nd, 2010
WILMINGTON, N.C. (AP) — Only a fraction of wounded veterans who could get better benefits have applied in the two years since Congress, acting on concerns the military was cutting costs by downplaying injuries, ordered the Pentagon to review disputed claims.
As of mid-March, only 921 vets have applied out of the 77,000 the Pentagon estimates are eligible, according to numbers provided to The Associated Press by the Physical Disability Board of Review. The panel was created in 2008 but started taking cases in January 2009.
More than 230 cases have been decided, about 60 percent in favor of improving the veteran’s benefits, while an additional 119 case were dismissed as ineligible.
Advocates and even the board members themselves want the review panel to do a better job of getting the word out.
“Quite frankly, I would like to see more opportunities for us to reach out to these people,” said Michael LoGrande, president of the three-member board that has a staff of 10. “But we are doing the best we can with the limited people and resources we have.”
LoGrande said the board is trying to reach eligible vets mainly through veterans groups. Read the full story here
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