The VA has been announcing this for quite some time, and those suffering from three specific diseases may qualify for a year of retroactive benefits...that will be determined by their rating officers, but YOU must send in at least a simple letter of application...consider using the following language - a more formal application can follow at any time but you MUST have something submitted.
Your more formal paperwork can follow later, but let's get this started now. If you know of veterans' survivors, please get the word to them as well!
(your name and address)
(your Social Security Number)
To: Department of Veterans Affairs
address of your VA Regional Office)
I have been exposed to Agent Orange while in the United States Air Force as a crew member aboard our C-123K aircraft, and apply for all appropriate protections and benefits.
-------------- from Air Force Sergeants Association----------------
Agent Orange Deadline Approaching
Vietnam-era veterans take note; an important due date is approaching for those who have medical diagnoses for three presumptive conditions related to exposure to Agent Orange.
Veterans who have been diagnosed with ischemic heart disease, hairy cell/B-cell leukemias and Parkinson’s disease have until August 30, 2011, to file their disability claims with VA in order to qualify for up to one year of retroactive benefits.
Veterans can file for disability claims online at VA's Agent Orange Fast Track Claims Processing System (https://www.fasttrack.va.gov/AOFastTrack). ; Veterans who served in the Republic of Vietnam or in-land waterways between January 9, 1962 and May 7, 1975 may use this website to apply for disability benefits for these conditions. (THIS ALSO APPLIES TO ANY PERSON EXPOSED TO AGENT ORANGE UNDER WHATEVER CIRCUMSTANCES.)
NOTE: Widows and widowers whose spouses have died from Agent Orange presumptive conditions may also qualify for retroactive benefits and are encouraged to file for dependent indemnity compensation by August 30.
Immunization Awareness for Veterans
VA health care workers prepare for the upcoming flu season, it’s important for vets to get the right vaccines in the right doses at the right time. As part of National Immunization Awareness Month activities, VA provides this list (http://www.va.gov/health/NewsFeatures/20110818a.asp) of some of the most important vaccines.