If you’ve ever wondered how VA rates disabilities for compensation, you’ll be interested to know that after more than 70 years we’re doing a review and update of the rating criteria for all 15 body systems. Previous updates have been done as needed, but this is the first comprehensive review of the VA Schedule for Rating Disabilities.
The first of these updates, for Dental and Oral Conditions, went into effect September 10. This update includes updated medical terms, new diagnostic codes for conditions previously rated under other conditions, and added disability levels. No existing dental or oral conditions were removed.
Often referred to as the “VASRD” or rating schedule, directs claims processors on how to assess the severity of disabilities related to military service. While VA has routinely updated parts of the VASRD, for the first time since 1945, VA is updating the entire rating schedule to more accurately reflect modern medicine.
Since 2009, subject matter experts, including physicians, reviewed each of the 15 body systems that make up the VASRD. This effort is part of VA’s continued commitment to improving the delivery of disability compensation benefits to Veterans and modernizing our systems.
If you have a claim or appeal pending for a dental or oral condition before Sept. 10, 2017, VA will consider both the old and new rating criteria when making a decision. All claims for dental or oral conditions received by VA on or after Sept. 10 will be rated under the new rating criteria.
If you are already service-connected for a dental or oral condition and submit a claim for increase, your disability rating may increase (or decrease) based on the new rating criteria. However, VA will not change your disability rating just because of the update to the rating criteria.
In the coming months, more body systems will be updated until all 15 are modernized, ensuring VA provides the most accurate ratings for disability compensation claims based on modern medicine.