The Department of Veterans Affairs has updated the musculoskeletal and muscle injuries portion of its rating disabilities schedule to reflect medical information used to assess veterans’ medical records and determine their VA disability rating.
Acting VA Under Secretary for Benefits Thomas Murphy said the changes are based on both scientific and medical information and reflect cited, published materials available to the public.
“During the course of finalizing this rulemaking, VA received comments from various veterans service organizations and veterans to ensure fair evaluations are established. VA claims processors will use this update to make consistent decisions with greater ease,” he said in a statement Wednesday.
The change to the VA Schedule for Rating Disabilities was effective Feb. 7.
The change ensures that the portion of the VASRD uses current medical terminology by removing “obsolete conditions, clarifying ambiguities, and providing detailed and updated criteria for the evaluation of musculoskeletal and muscle injury disabilities, including adding conditions that previously did not have diagnostic codes,” according to the department.
Claims for musculoskeletal and/or muscle injury conditions decided after Feb. 7, but that were pending on the effective date, will be considered under both the old and new rating criteria, according to VA. Whichever criteria is more favorable to the veteran will be applied. Claims filed on or after the effective date will be rated under the new criteria.
Learn more about the complete list of updates to the rating schedule here. Veterans with questions regarding this VASRD update may contact VA at 800-827-1000.
Reach Julia LeDoux at Julia@connectingvets.com.
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Read More: VA announces changes to its disability rating schedule