About a dozen veterans were on hand at East Hartford’s VFW Post 2083 to share their claims of inaction and delay by the Department of Veterans Affairs with U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy. The VA has faced criticism in recent weeks for a growing backlog of medical claims filed by veterans.
The average time for the adjudication of an appeal of a veteran’s claim is about nine months, but Pam Townsend’s appeals have lingered for years.
Lucien LeFevre, a National Guard reservist, said his wife had documentation from Walter Reed Hospital and the VA refused to pay for medical expenses.
The claim backlog has grown from 500,000 four years ago to 900,000 this year. Murphy said there’s a proposal to allow the federal government to contract with law schools across the country to have students work for free to help veterans submit their claims.
“They always tell you, you know, you go do for us and we will take care of you when you get home and that’s not always a true statement,” LeFevre said.