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Thread: So I went to the VA

  1. #1

    So I went to the VA

    First time in years. I don't trust them.
    I asked for a new cushion- they offered me a flu shot
    I asked for some new bearings- they offered me a pneumonia shot
    I asked for a new back upholstery- they offered me Viagra

    I left with nothing.
    Good to see you can depend on somethings. Like the VA being useless.

  2. #2
    ok, what VA did you visit?

    Ive been spending some time at McGuire VA Hospital here in Richmond, Ive been very impressed with their SCI unit. Its massive, the patients receive such great care, research is booming, latest technology in rehab equipment, therapy, etc...

    Patients there seem to receive much better care and a heck of a lot more attention than civilians.

  3. #3
    the one in memphis is great also, arizona, i'm told is awesome, u must of went to some crap hole.......

  4. #4
    There is a great VA in Asheville, or at least it was pretty good about 10 or so years ago when my dad worked there as an intern. I don't know exactly what you went in there for, but its possible its not 100% their fault.
    <- the most awesome Smile ever.

  5. #5
    Just going to "a VA" is not what you need.

    All VA hospitals are required to have a SCI-trained primary care clinic (spoke clinic) with a physician, RN or nurse practitioner, and social worker. Their job is to provide your day-to-day primary care. This does include (by the way) getting you the appropriate immunizations, and all veterans this time of year MUST be offered a flu shot (and any other mandatory health screenings must also be done: smoking cessation, depression, etc. etc.), most annually.

    The spoke clinics are all assigned to a VA SCI Center (hub). There are 23 of these currently, with 2 more scheduled to open in the next several years. There is a whole list of things that are supposed to be done ONLY at the hub centers, including annual evaluations, most surgical procedures, etc. etc. etc. The spoke centers are required to make these referrals for you, as well as to seek consultation indicated with your hub center SCI experts when needed. For example, we do telehealth wound/pressure ulcer consultations on a regular basis with our spoke centers, and if indicated, will then arrange to admit the SCI veteran to our hub center for definitive treatment (since flap surgery is only to be done at a hub center).

    If you are not registered for your SCI primary care with your local spoke (or hub) center, then you need to request that this be changed. Your PVA NSO is also someone who can assist with this.

    Here is a site where you can find lists of both the hub and spoke centers for the entire VA system (check the left side bar):


  6. #6
    I don't know what VA you went to but please let me know and I will direct you to PVA, NSO that will help you get what you need. The VA....... can mean a small clinic or medical center. If you are an SCI/D Vet then you need to get to a VA Spinal Cord Center where they will be able to help you out. Everything KLD posted is correct. As a SCI patient you are suppose to receive an annual evaulation at a spinal cord center, have you had yours?

    If you need the listed items you need to find out who at your SCI Center is assigned the task of ordering and evaluating you for those items. There should be someone assigned who specifically deals with cushions and someone that deals with wheelchairs. You might have to make an appointment depending on how long ago it has been since they have seen you. So call and speak to someone, I don't believe you can go anywhere even in the private sector and just show up and expect them to hand you a cushion, bearings, and a backrest.

    The VA is not holding out on these items they just don't stock these things, they will need to get the serial number from your chair and order them. If your wheelchair is that beat up, you might be ready for a new one, so call. also rate to have a spare wheelchair, I don't think they offer that anywhere outside the VA. If they offered you Viagra I hope you took, they only give out Levitra where I am.

    The ball is in your court.


  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by POPO367 View Post
    If they offered you Viagra I hope you took, they only give out Levitra where I am.
    Enrique, you may want to check on this. We were told that the VA has officially changed back to Viagra for ED management (by national contract) as of 2 weeks ago. I had to change all my handouts and ordering templates to comply, and all our veterans on Levitra are getting a letter telling them that they are being changed to Viagra (sildenafil) from Levitra (vardenafil).


  8. #8
    Senior Member trekker6's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    merritt island, florida
    I was in the marine corps from 68-72, am a c4 central cord syndrome sci. How do I start applying for va benefits for sci?

  9. #9
    Trekker, it is easiest if you work with your local PVA National Service Officer. They can be sure that you get rated correctly (generally as a Priority 4) even if not service connected. You may also be eligible for other benefits such as pension due to serving during war-time. Did you serve in Vietnam? You may also be eligible for other benefits if you have Agent Orange exposure, etc.

    Here is where you can find both the PVA chapters and the National Service Offices for Florida. PVA membership is free for you as a SCI Veteran:

    You can also go to your local VA and apply in person (see the Member Services Office), or mail in your eligibility application, but working with the NSO will prevent you from falling through the cracks and help you get all that you are entitled to. Here is where you can find the application on-line. You need to send this in with a copy (not the original) of your DD214, but a VA physician will have to complete the paperwork for you to be rated Priority group 4.

    I don't know Florida well. Is Merritt Island closer to Tampa or Miami? Both have SCI Centers.


  10. #10
    Senior Member trekker6's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    merritt island, florida
    thaanks kld,
    I never got to viet nam even though I volunteered to go regularly, I was an avionics tech, worked on TA4F skyhawks, an attack aircraft trainer. Merritt Island is just south of cape canaveral, 2hrs from tampa, 3hrs from miami, but if they are good, it'll worth my while to go.

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