VA Disability trends
Belleville, Illinois — Nov. 7, 2017 — For many veterans, the impact of their military service has lasting repercussions. The results can be seen in the growing number of veterans receiving disability compensation years after key military operations, according to Allsup Veterans Disability Appeal Service.
The latest data on service-connected disability from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) shows that nearly 28 percent more veterans began receiving VA disability compensation benefits in fiscal year 2016, compared with 2011. Notable trends include the 77 percent increase in veterans receiving compensation for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and the 172 percent increase in veterans receiving compensation for lumbosacral or cervical strain. In addition, migraines entered the top 10 most prevalent disabilities as more veterans experience this debilitating condition.
“These trends in service-connected disabilities truly show the lasting effects from the Global War on Terror deployments,” said Brett Buchanan, VA-accredited Claims Agent at Allsup. “Many people may consider the conflicts over, but the impact continues for tens of thousands of our military service members, even years after they completed their last deployment.”
Post 9/11 conflicts include Operation Iraqi Freedom (approximately 2003-2010), Operation Enduring Freedom (approximately 2001-2014), as well as Operation Inherent Resolve, which continues today.
“The increase in head, neck and spinal related injuries, including more traumatic brain injuries, or TBIs, while on active duty are contributing to veterans experiencing these types of disabilities, especially migraines,” Buchanan said.
“Another factor is increased awareness and assessment for these health conditions, which is leading to earlier diagnosis, even while on active duty,” he said. There is more information available about the role of delayed onset of disabilities for veterans, who may initially receive successful medical treatment and rehabilitation, or leave service with no significant symptoms, Buchanan said. One example is the increase of research studies on the topic of late-onset stress symptomatology.
“While on active duty, veterans may feel they can manage with the health effects from their deployments, such as pain or loss of mobility,” Buchanan said. “But once they leave service, their health can worsen or the symptoms can evolve into something more debilitating.”
Advances in medical research and understanding of PTSD and TBI issues have been vital for military members. “A combination of medical advances, awareness and the impact of these ongoing conflicts are playing a role in these trends for the VA disability program,” Buchanan said. “It’s vital that veterans understand they are not alone in experiencing these symptoms and there is True Help available for their VA disability appeals.”
Find more information about appealing your VA disability claim at Veterans.Allsup.com.
Find chart for veterans with service-connected disabilities here.
Allsup and its subsidiaries provide nationwide Social Security disability, veterans disability appeal, return to work, exchange plan and Medicare services for individuals, their employers and insurance carriers. Allsup professionals deliver specialized services supporting people with disabilities and seniors so they may lead lives that are as financially secure and as healthy as possible. Founded in 1984, the company is based in Belleville, Illinois, near St. Louis. Learn more at FileSSDI.Allsup.com and @Allsup on Twitter.