Veterans, who have given some of the best years of their lives to our country, should not have to wait for long periods of time to get their veterans disability claims processed and approved.The Department of Veterans Affairs recently announced that there has been a significant reduction in the number of disability compensation claims that are still pending.
According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, it has managed to significantly reduce the backlog of claims, from approximately 611,000 to just over 400,000. That works out to a reduction of close to 34%, since March, when the backlog had peaked.
The Department of Veterans Affairs recently launched an initiative to reduce the backlog of pending claims, especially claims that have been pending for more than a year. Since the initiative was launched, the agency has managed to eliminate some of the oldest claims that were pending for more than a year. They have an extra staff working at 56 regional offices of the agency. As of November this year, the Veterans Benefits Administration has completed 93% of the older claims. More than 450,000 decisions for veterans have been announced since the beginning of the initiative on April 19.
The Veterans Benefits Administration claims that the success in reducing the claims backlog has come about because it has increased its staffing and overtime in regional offices processing the claims. The agency directed approximately 20 hours of compulsory overtime per month for processors, and has also worked with the Veterans Health Administration to help speed up decisions, by using more VA physicians. The mandated overtime at these offices, is expected to continue until November 23. If funding allows, the mandated overtime is also expected to continue next year, to speed up processing of claims further.