Search Site
VA Proposes Changes to Disability Ratings for Skin Conditions

On Friday, August 12, the Federal Register published proposed rule changes for the Department of Veterans Affairs that would amend the portion of the VA disability rating system that governs skin conditions. These changes are being proposed to “incorporate medical advances…, update current medical terminology, and provide clear evaluation criteria.” If you are a veteran suffering from a disabling skin condition, the proposed changes may be welcome news, or you might feel they don’t go far enough. The public comment period lasts until October 11.

The highlights of the proposed rule changes include:

  • Overruling the controversial holding of the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims in Johnson v. McDonald, 27 Vet. App. 497 (2016), that a topical corticosteroid is systemic therapy for dermatitis or eczema (DC 7806). The new rule clarifies that a systemic therapy is administered through any route (orally, injection, suppository, intranasally) other than the skin, but a topical treatment could be systemic if performed on a large enough scale.
  • The VA recognizing new therapies for skin conditions, including ultraviolet radiation (phototherapy), PUVA (photochemotherapy), retinoids, and biologics.
  • Revising the current system list of 30 diagnostic codes. The proposed changes would add, remove and revise the list to better reflect current medical science and terminology.
  • Consolidating several similar disorders to be rated under the same formula, rather than prescribing individual rating criteria to each. These conditions are dermatitis or eczema, discoid lupus erythematosus, dermatophytosis, bullous disorders, psoriasis, infections of the skin not listed elsewhere, cutaneous manifestations of collagen-vascular diseases not listed elsewhere, papulosquamous disorders not listed elsewhere, and diseases of keratinization.

There are also proposed substantive changes that affect numerous conditions. If you are currently receiving benefits for a disabling skin condition or are trying to access veterans’ benefits, these changes could impact your eligibility or your disability rating.

If you or a veteran you love is having trouble accessing VA benefits, our accredited attorneys are ready to help. Call Marcari, Russotto, Spencer & Balaban  today at 866-866-VETS or contact us online.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • Thank to Mr. Spencer I was able to get my VA disability claim re-reviewed and given another chance to receive disability. By far he is one of the most professional lawyers I have ever dealt with. So Veterans if you are looking for help with your VA disability claim I would suggest that you hire Macari, Russotto, Spencer, & Balaban. Thanks again for everything.

    — Alfred Daye

  • As a disabled veteran trying to navigate the complexities of the Veterans Administrations regulations, I turned to the law firm of Marcari, Russotto, Spencer and Balaban. They helped me understand what I needed to do and prepared and presented to the VA an excellent presentation of my case. I recommend them for your legal needs.

    — Harry Johnson

  • I was very satisfied with the excellent and professional manner the law firm handled my claim. I highly recommend any veteran who needs help with his or her claim to use Marcari, Russotto, Spencer & Balaban P.C. Special thanks to Mr Spencer for being very professional and courteous during the appeal process. Again Thanks to the entire firm for a job well done!

    — Luther Henderson

  • My husband & I highly recommend this law form to any veteran trying to navigate the endless red tape of the VA. We turned to Marcari, Russotto, Spencer & Balaban to handle my husband's appeal and could not have been happier. We enjoyed open and consistent communication regarding our case. Any questions we had were answered immediately.

    — Michele DeZayas

  • Amanda Medina-Morales was our point of contact and she kept us up to date on the progress of our case. It was a pleasure and relief knowing that someone truly competent and professional was handling this and fighting for us.

    — Michele DeZayas

Contact us

Quick Contact Form