|Matthew Hill:||Hello, and welcome to the Hill and Ponton Video blog. I’m Matthew Hill.|
|Carol Ponton:||I’m Carol Ponton.|
|Matthew Hill:||Today we want to talk to you about a specific group of soldiers, paratroopers, and the resulting injuries, the resulting disabilities they end up having from that MOS. Typically what we see are orthopedic disabilities.|
|Matthew Hill:||What a lot of these veterans don’t appreciate is even if they didn’t have a disability in service, they didn’t treat for their back. They didn’t treat for their knee. They didn’t treat for their neck. If they develop a disability later in life, that is enough showing their MOS there that it should be related.|
|Carol Ponton:||Right. The VA has actually done studies to show that people who did a lot of paratrooping in the future are going to end up with these problems. Some of these people will automatically, when you file a claim, be accepted, but more likely than not they’re going to send you to a C&P exam, and the doctor will say, “It’s not related. I don’t see anything in service.” You can get medical opinions that show that the VA has studied this, and that it is very likely for people who had a lot of jumps to end up with back problems, knee problems, lots of problems. If you are one of these people, you have a right to these benefits, but you need to get in there and file for them, and then be willing to get an independent medical opinion. We have veterans that had no problem in the service but ended up with horrible knees and backs and are 100% disabled because of those.|
|Matthew Hill:||Something Carol said is that we see common in both C&P examiners and frankly adjudicators to the VA. They say, “well, in service you didn’t treat with us.” The law states that you have to have an incident in service that caused a current disability. You don’t have to have a disability. You don’t have to have been diagnosed with something. You have to have an incident that caused it. The incident in this case is hard landings, repetitive landings with a heavy pack. Even though there is no disability that appeared at that time, that is what caused the current disability now.|
|Matthew Hill:||Unfortunately, we’re not doctors, but we see this so often and it just looks obvious to us. Yet, for some reason both the VA, the people making decisions and the doctors are just so focused on, “I don’t see an injury noted in service.” If this is you, continue to appear and as Carol said, find either your doc outside or a private doc who will look at this and talk about whether it’s related or not. Thanks for joining us. We look forward to seeing you in this space soon.|
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