Battle Over Burn Pit Exposure

Posted by Allison Sullivan on Aug 14, 2019 10:04:00 AM

 

Data Indicates Many Veterans are Suffering from Smoke Exposure Due to Burn Pits.

You may have heard about the Burn Pit Registry, but what exactly is it? Burn pits were a common way to get rid of waste at military sites in Iraq and Afghanistan. Currently, the VA says that research does not show these burn pits caused any long-term health problems, but much like the veterans affected by Gulf War Syndrome, they are continuing to study it and have created a Burn Pit Registry to keep track of veterans exposed to the smoke and other elements. Nearly 170,000 veterans and current service members have entered information in the registry since it was launched five years ago. These numbers might be the first indication that there is a widespread problem affecting many service members with similar military service. 

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Topics: Veterans Affairs

Gene Powell honored by program that helps student veterans

Posted by Allison Sullivan on Jul 11, 2019 3:02:16 PM

Gene Powell, a retired U.S. Army colonel and member of Bluestein Attorneys’ SC Veterans’ Advocates Team, was recently honored by the University of South Florida for his decades of active and reserve military service.

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Topics: Veterans Affairs, News

Veterans Serving Veterans

Posted by Allison Sullivan on Jul 8, 2019 11:25:00 AM

At Bluestein Attorneys our Veteran Affairs team features officers and former enlisted personnel.

At Bluestein Attorneys, we understand what it means to serve our nation in a time of war.

 We have experienced the sacrifices veterans make for our country. Fighting for the men and women who served is not just a profession - it's an honor. 

For the next couple of weeks, we'll be taking time here at Bluestein Attorneys' blog to do something a little different. It's essential when dealing with sensitive legal issues to get an understanding of the attorneys you're looking to represent you — and nowhere is that more important than in Veterans Affairs Disability claims.

Our VA attorneys have agreed to answer a few questions that will help you get to know them a little bit better and to understand why they are so passionate about defending and standing up for the rights of military veterans and service members. Today, we'll meet with Tim Mercer who joined Bluestein Attorneys in 2018.

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Topics: Veterans Affairs

What Cancers Are Associated With Military Radiation Exposure?

Posted by Eugene Powell on Dec 6, 2018 1:05:03 PM

Radiation exposure has long been a potential risk associated with military service, primarily for individuals who performed what Veterans Affairs refers to as "radiation-risk activities" (as defined in 38 CFR 3.309(d)(3)), including nuclear weapons testing, but these specific tests are not the only potential risk for those serving in the military to be exposed to harmful radiation levels.

In order to file a VA Disability claim for cancer related to radiation exposure, a veteran would need to be able to prove a connection between their cancer diagnosis and radiation exposure during military service.

Proving service-connection for radiation-related cancers can be difficult and complex. The more information you have before moving forward, the better.

Let's take a closer look at what cancers are associated with radiation exposure during military service.

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Topics: Veterans Affairs

Attorney Tim Mercer to Join the Bluestein Attorneys VA Disability Team

Posted by Allison Sullivan on Nov 28, 2018 10:04:03 AM

COLUMBIA, S.C. – Attorney Timothy Mercer has joined Bluestein Thompson Sullivan, LLC.
He will practice exclusively in the area of Veterans Disability.

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Topics: Veterans Affairs, News

Were You Exposed to Asbestos During Military Service?

Posted by Eugene Powell on May 21, 2018 8:23:58 AM

When asbestos was originally introduced to the public, it was considered something of a miracle due to its ability to more effectively fireproof housing, machinery, automobiles, and more.

We are primarily used to hearing about asbestos being used in housing construction or automobile manufacture, but did you know every branch of the United States military used asbestos as a flame retardant, too? Long after the harmful effects of long-term asbestos exposure were known, its use continued unabated until nearly 1980.

Asbestos is either partially or fully banned in more than 17 countries. You may be surprised to learn, however, that the United States is not one of them.

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Topics: Veterans Affairs

Medical Malpractice at Veterans Affairs: What to Do If You're Affected

Posted by Eugene Powell on Apr 30, 2018 9:20:09 AM

In our last blog, we looked into ways to protect yourself and your loved ones from medical malpractice as a result of VA care.

Unfortunately, medical malpractice isn't limited to care received at private medical facilities or in hospitals  — veterans have also found themselves subject to sometimes serious injuries as a result of care they received at the VA.

Current servicemembers and military veterans who have suffered as a result of medical malpractice at the VA do have options! Today, we'll take a look at the two ways to seek a remedy, the steps included, and why it's important to have legal representation.

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Topics: Veterans Affairs

Medical Malpractice at VA Facilities: How to Protect Yourself

Posted by Eugene Powell on Apr 17, 2018 8:13:20 AM

Local Columbia newspaper The State recently reported on the case of U.S. Navy Veteran Eric Walker. Mr. Walker sought care at the Dorn Veterans Hospital in Columbia, SC, while suffering from severe pains in his abdomen.

The hospital asked for a routine urine sample — that's where the 'routine' part of this ER visit ends. To Walker's shock, the hospital informed him that he had flunked their drug test and his stomach pains were caused by "excessive cocaine use" and other drug ingestion. 

Medical staff at Dorn did not attempt to provide treatment for his pain and told him instead to go home and seek help for drug addiction. 

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Topics: Veterans Affairs, Medical Malpractice

What's the Fastest-Growing Group of Military Veterans Today?

Posted by Eugene Powell on Nov 29, 2017 2:13:31 PM

When considering what segment of military veterans is growing the fastest in the United States today, who comes to mind? If you thought of women, you would be correct.

As of today, women make up almost 10% of the military, with the number expected to double by 2040.

While women serving in the military isn't anything new, it took until after World War II for their contributions to be formally recognized. Even after recognition, women have continued to have to fight to access the same standard of healthcare from the VA as their male counterparts, especially when it comes to VA Disability claims for service-connected conditions.

Let's take a closer look at injured military women and their fight to receive the standard of care from the VA that they are entitled to.

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Topics: Veterans Affairs

Have You Heard of VA Disability Claims for Agent Blue?

Posted by Eugene Powell on Nov 15, 2017 10:44:42 AM

We've spoken before about Agent Orange, one of a collection of so-called "rainbow herbicides" sprayed during the conflict in Vietnam as part of the defoliation efforts used by the American military. Agent Orange contamination left thousands of veterans exposed to dangerous chemicals that, over time, have been correlated with a spate of chronic illnesses and even cancers.

While many Vietnam-era veterans are aware of their ability to file for VA Disability as a result of Agent Orange contamination, fewer are aware of another common herbicide utilized during Vietnam: Agent Blue.

You may be able to file VA Disability claims for Agent Blue if you were exposed during your time in service. Let's take a closer look at what Agent Blue is and what kinds of health effects come as a result of exposure.

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Topics: Veterans Affairs