Effective August 13, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) updated portions of the VA Schedule for Rating Disabilities (VASRD, or Rating Schedule) that evaluate conditions related to the skin.
The VASRD is the collection of federal regulations used by Veterans Benefits Administration claims processors to evaluate the severity of disabilities and assign disability ratings.
VA is in the process of updating all 15 body systems of the VASRD to reflect modern medicine more accurately and provide clearer rating decisions.
“VA remains committed to providing veterans the benefits they have earned at the highest quality,” said VA Secretary Robert Wilkie. “With modern medicine advancing at a rapid rate, it’s important to ensure VA’s disability rating schedule and rating decisions reflect these advancements.”
No conditions were removed from the new skin rating schedule, but a number of diagnostic codes were restructured or revised, according to the VA.
Claims pending prior to August 13 will be considered under both the old and new rating criteria, and whichever criteria are more favorable to the veteran will be applied. Claims filed on or after August 13 will be rated under the new rating schedule.
By updating the rating schedule for skin conditions, VA claims processors can make more consistent decisions with greater ease and ensure veterans understand these decisions.