We’ve obtained information from the “Caregiver Support Program Hub” that is quite alarming, but it’s great that the Hub is now open to all VA staff! There are multiple areas of concern within the “Transition Plan” as noted in the attached document.
i. Code of Federal Regulations FINAL RULE dated January 9, 2015, page 1367, last paragraph far left row: In describing the eligibility criteria in the Senate bill, the joint statement states that ‘‘[s]everely injured veterans are defined as those who need personal care services because they are unable to perform one or more independent activities of daily living.’ This is VERY CLEAR, a veteran CAN qualify due to needing assistance performing ONE (or more) activities of daily living; requiring assistance with ONE ADL does NOT make a veteran unable to work.
ii. Please see the attached Tier 3 employment simulation document we have created to show that a veteran CAN work and still qualify for TIER 3 on this program.
Is it discrimination if a veteran has an ADA diagnosis and/or reasonable accommodations to suddenly not be allowed in this program? Are we no longer considering reasonable accommodations for employment? What about those who are grandfathered into this program who are already in the program and employed? It is unethical to abruptly revoke veterans due to employment simply because VA chooses not to allow these veterans into the program OR because VA wishes to adjust their budget, please take note that the law is not written to make these veterans ineligible.
Who made the decision to discharge/not allow any veterans who are employed? Was it Dr. Kaplan? VACO? Congress? Asking because the law is clear, the Congressional officials we work with have made it clear that the program is intended to provide support to veterans who need it but do NOT qualify for a nursing home and who CAN still work, even if that means with accommodations.
These processes have not been thought out and the after effects WILL be detrimental to many families. This lack of understanding but making of decisions is all at the expense of veterans who are already struggling. Per Brian Masts statements, “There are 435 representatives sitting in the Capitol. Everyone, of which is saying, on a weekly basis, they want to effect 22 suicides a day, they want to make the VA a better place for people to get their healthcare needs, they want to make it a better place.” To be clear, the current actions taking place within this program, the current plans, will ensure there are more than 22 a day and it will not only be veterans but caregivers as well. These actions effect FAMILIES who are being put in a situation where they see no other way out because without this program they cannot properly care for the veteran.
National Appeals Director
Veteran Warriors, Inc.
P: 727.247.8141 Ext. 7
VA Internal Strategy Documents :
Plans for transition
Caregiver Support Hub (internal use)
CARMA Champions (internal contacts)
CFR (Law) stating veteran's qualify for the program if they meet ONE (or more) needs for ADLs.
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