Blue Water Veterans is a phrase commonly used to describe Vietnam veterans that served on open sea ships off the shore of Vietnam. The Department of Veterans Affairs has since 2002 treated Blue Water Veterans has differently than other Vietnam Veterans relative to granting them benefits for the presumptive conditions for veterans exposed to agent orange in the Republic of Vietnam.
Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act of 2019, or H.R. 299, restores VA benefits to thousands of Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans who had their disability eligibility taken away in 2002 after arbitrary regulatory changes. It benefits veterans exposed to Agent Orange while serving along the Korean DMZ with an earlier start date to encompass the timeframe when various defoliants were tested — to Sept. 1, 1967, instead of April 1, 1968 — and expands benefits to children born with spina bifida due to a parent’s exposure in Thailand, coverage that already exists for the children of Vietnam and Korean DMZ veterans. The new law also requires the VA to report on research being conducted on a broad range of conditions possibly related to service in Southwest Asia, which is important for future legislative efforts to create a list of presumptive conditions for veterans seeking VA health care and benefits.
The diseases now on the VA’s Agent Orange list are coronary artery heart disease, respiratory cancers, prostate cancer, multiple myeloma, Hodgkin’s disease, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, Parkinson’s disease, type 2 diabetes, peripheral neuropathy-early onset, AL amyloidosis, chronic B-cell leukemia, chloracne, porphyria cutanea-tarda, and soft tissue sarcomas.
The VA is considering adding several other diseases — bladder cancer, hypothyroidism, hypertension and Parkinson’s-like symptoms — to the list.
It should be noted: The VFW has championed the restoration of benefits to the Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans in Congress for the past 7yrs and lobbied hard for the Passage of the Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act of 2019, or H.R. 299. But the Job isn’t done yet!
VFW Claims Office
Bishop Henry Whipple Federal Building
1 Federal Drive
St. Paul, MN. 55111
Mon-Fri 7 AM-3:30 PM
Your local County Veterans Service Officer
TO FIND A CVSO NEAR YOU – GO TO:
www.macvso.org and click find a CVSO
WHEN TALKING TO YOUR COUNTY VETERANS DERVICE BE SURE TO TELL THE YOU WANT THE “VFW” TO BE YOU ACREDIYED REPESENTATIVE
This bulletin provided by
VFW POST 295 – SOUTH SAINT PAUL MN
“NO BODY DOES MORE FOR VETERANS”