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Veterans Advocates Call for Improving Benefits Claims Process

New Jersey Veterans Affairs advocates are calling on members of a Congressional subcommittee to streamline the process in getting benefits to veterans.

Reps Tim Walz (D-MN) and Jon Runyan (R-NJ) by Rosetta Key Townsquaremedia
Reps Tim Walz (D-MN) and Jon Runyan (R-NJ) (Rosetta Key Townsquare Media NJ)

Veterans advocates who spoke before members of a Veterans Affairs subcommittee Monday, called on Representatives to either come up with alternatives to the Compensation and Pension Evaluation Process (C & P), or as suggested by John Dorrity, of Ocean County Veterans Services, eliminate it altogether. “It becomes unnecessary with people who have more than adequate private medical evidence.”

John P. Dorrity, Ocean County Veterans Bureau
John P. Dorrity, Ocean County Veterans Bureau Director

Dorrity gives an example saying the process “becomes really inadequate if the V.A. Doctor diagnoses me with diabeties and then I gotta go and see another Doctor at the V.A. so he can confirm the first Doctor. It makes no sense.”

Democratic Minnesota Congressman Tim Walz, who attended the hearing, concurred with Dorrity, “this exam we give to get benefits in many cases is redundant and not doing what it’s supposed to do but it ends up causing quite a bit of grief for the veterans in terms of time. I think there’s a way that will protect the tax payers giving the veterans the benefit of the doubt.”

3rd District Congressman Jon Runyan, who Chairs the Subcommittee on Disability Assistance and Memorial Affairs (DAMA), brought the hearing to Ocean County College. He says “being here and being at an oversight hearing and getting the stories and getting the problems on the table so we can find “What are the common links between these? and what is the one string we pull that solves ten of these problems at one time?”

He’s planning on addressing the simple problems first saying “when you start to eat away at the simple stuff you get to the bigger problems. In the long term we’re going to help the system run smoothly.

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