Going nuts over the unknown

KD5BFF

PEB Forum Regular Member
I wanted to first give kudos to the creator and moderators of this site. I found it by accident during a search for my condition and let me say, wow. I have poured over a great deal of information on this site to the point my head hurt.
Secondly, I want to thank all those that posted on here. It wouldn’t be what it is without you. So now I guess it's my turn.
A few years ago (2005) I was diagnosed as having two bulging disks (L3-L4 & L4-L5) as well as spinal stenosis in the same areas. For the last couple of years I have had problems with PT testing and in May 2010, I failed my fourth test in two years. In April 2010 I went for another MRI and it showed progression of everything. Disks are bulging more and the stenosis has spread to vertebrae that it wasn’t in from the 2005 report. After the fourth test I went to my PCM and asked him to start the MEB process. While doing research for the referral EPR and LOR I was given for the fourth failure, I discovered all kinds of issues in AFI 10-248 with my base and my circumstances. Moral of the research is a lot of things were mishandled or not done correctly, as far as I can see and I have a promotion on the line that no one but me seems to care about.
Now that I have the fourth failure, my commander is initiating the Retention package. I’m already listed as code 37 so I know my PCM did what I asked.
I will provide more of the story as necessary but my questions are, how far in can the retention package go while the MEB is still pending? What kind of disability can I actually look at from the AF or VA if I get separated/retired? BTW I have 14 years active and 16.5 total. What happens to the whole thing if I do the surgery that the neurosurgeon says I need to do to quasi-fix my back? I have more questions but have totally brain dumped typing this. Any help would be much appreciated and as I stated, I will give more details to help anyone help me.
Thanks for all that everyone does and God bless
Chris
 

Toni bologna

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
Hi Chris,
It's a frustrating process. Because you are coded on your profile and going through an MEB, why would your promotion be affected? You can still promote. Get a copy of all your medical records, period. And the MEB portion can take forever, if you are not proactive about it. Well, I don't know how it is up in McGuire, but for me...if I wasn't CONSISTENTLY pinging my MEB case officer, I'd probably still be waiting on my package being submitted. You have to 'fight' for what you want. Unfortunately, not alot of leadership knows how this process works, and go based on assumptions...
 

yankin

PEB Forum Regular Member
Chris,

I am in the same situation with an MEB and PT failures. I have a new CC who is hard core on the fitness program. After looking at the AFI there is nothing to stop the CC for booting me for multiple failures MEB or not.
 

Jason Perry

Benevolent Leader
Site Founder
Staff Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
yankin,

There absolutely is...medical disability evaluation and discharge take precedence over all non-misconduct discharges (including expiration of enlistment/obligation, failure to meet standards, HT/WT, etc). If they try to boot you after an MEB is initiated for PT failures, let us know.
 

cd76

PEB Forum Regular Member
Yankin & Chris,
I am kinda going through the same situation. I was having problems with the PT failures and my back is trashed also. I have 3 bulging disc and the others in the lower lumbar have DGD. I am replying because I want you both to know that your Commander or anyone else by that matter has the authority to kick you out only based on PT failures if you have a medical condition that is limiting you. I can't recall where in the reg, but It states that after you fail your PT test the commander must have you see your PCM to declare if you have a medical condition causing you to fail before any discipline action can be done. I say this because I just ran into this at the beginning of this year. Since then I have passed my PT test because I begged the HAWC people to let me do the "rockport" walk to try to make up some points for my large waist. My suggestion to you is if your chain tries to even mention "discharge" to either of you, do like I did and go to the ADC and get a lawyer. Believe me, it will save you a lot of headaches by trying to fight them by yourself.

The other question I have for you Chris, Have you been on a profile in the past during your PT testing? Depending on how long each profile was, you may be able to get the PT test and your referral EPR thrown out. But your lawyer can handle that better than I can. I am just telling you my situation and how I solved it. They were forced to remove 3 of my 4 failures because of the profiles. Hopefully this helps.
 

yankin

PEB Forum Regular Member
cd76,

I do have my PT retest next month. I expect I will will not reach the magic 37.5 inch waist, even after dieting. With a new first shirt who is a fitness nut like the CC I am on thin ice.

When the MEB process began I was ready to fight to continue my carreer. Now I am not so sure, I know if I am returned to duty the CC will do his best to give me the boot. I expect my E-6 stripe will be redlined later this year. Even though I am good at my job and have the awards and backing of my boss the AF is only interested in the damn PT test.
 

KD5BFF

PEB Forum Regular Member
I'm so sorry that I am just now looking back at all the replies. I appreciate everyones input. There were times that I had been on a profile and still required to test because the HAWC said so. The test I did in May was the ergo and I failed it. It was sighted that I failed becasue I wasn't in shape and didn't exercise either long enough or hard enough or both. Ya think? I had surgery at the end of September and I lost my stripe due to the "control roster" that I was put on from the 4th failure. I sighted to the Shirt and CC that I should have been referred by the CC to the MDG for evaluation due to failures. Short of literally sticking their fingers in their ears and saying "lalalala, can't hear you", nothing was done. I also brought up the referral EPR I got and how that was handled. Lalalalala, can't hear you. I was told if I want it fixed to take it BOC because they aren't touching it here. I just got back to work from conleave and I'll be stopping by the ADC soon to fight this battle. BTW I usually get the " we cant help you with that" from them but I will try one more time. I find it terribly interesting how people make things up as they go along and pay no attention to the regs or even care what they say. If this is how the AF is going, I'm ready to punch out and go do something else somewhere else.
 

focuz

PEB Forum Regular Member
I can honestly say that I am lucky I have yet to be tested in a little over a year. The first place to go is to see your doc. The pt reg says that you can be exempt from all components at their discretion. Granted it does not go over well but I have used it due to the meds I was on causing massive weight gain. I had heard the excuse that I didnt try hard enough or wasnt trying, those that say things like this will never understand your situation because they are not in that situation. I do hope everything goes well for you.
 

KD5BFF

PEB Forum Regular Member
I think I'd be hard pressed to be totally exempt from the pt testing. Actually I forgot to mention that I did the 1 mile walk back at the end of August. I was exempt from push-ups and sit-ups but had to tape and walk. I got a 92.13. My new CC did pull me off the control roster early as a very nice gesture to me doing so well on the test. I totally agree with you that they will never understand because it isn't them going through it. That seems to apply to most things in life but majorly right now in the AF over pt testing and medical issues. It's really easy for those in charge to make irrational decisions that don't affect them but when they have issues they demand that all the rules in their favor to be followed.
Yankin, you made a comment about not finding reference to them doing an admin discharge for the failures. Jason is right, there is something to the contrary. what I found doesn't make reference to MEB's but the new fitness reg and the separation and discharges states that a CC CANNOT administratively discharge a member if the PT failures are due to a medical condition. I found it in my vast research and if you need me to look it up again and give you the reg and paragraph number I will. Jason may already know by the way he commented. My MEB office told me that being a dual package greatly complicates the process and that it takes the SECAF to decide. I was also recently informed that the SECAF is about 2 years behind in dealing with these decisions.
 

sean4586

PEB Forum Regular Member
As for pt failures, I failed mine last week and am currently awaiting decision from SECAF on my PEB. My 1st shirt gave me the long schpeel about how I am still in uniform an need to comply. PT doensn't matter b/c I found these regs in AFI 36-3212(med board afi).

A.4.1.3. Member being retired or discharged for a disability will be honorably discharged.

4.5. Member cannot be retired, released, or discharged until final decision comes back from HQ AFPC/DPPD diecting disposition.

They can shove it if they think I am going to attend FIP since it doesn't even apply to me anyway. I am so sick of the AF treating everyone like crap when they are being forced out.
 

KD5BFF

PEB Forum Regular Member
I did some digging after I made the post last night. AFI 41-210 para 10.1.4.11 makes reference to the SECAF making final decision in dual action cases. AFI 48-123 is medical exams and standards. Overall it's a good read, almost required reading. Too many things to list. Just look it up and search for things that apply to you. I'm not an attorney but I'm pretty wise at reading the regs for what they say. They aren't "subject to interpretation" like a lot of people state. Read it, do it. There isn't anything to read into. Back to AFI 41-210 para 10.1.4.11, it makes reference to 36-3212 and 36-3208. Both are required reading if you are going to be, or could be, administratively discharged, doing the MEB process or a dual action case as I am. Hopefully this helps folks, I had to find these on my own. If you've gone to E-pubs and looked at all the 36 series, it's not easy to find what you want. Keep in mind one thing, the only person that will take care of you the way you need to be taken care of is you. I get reminded of this at least once a day. Read the regs for yourself and get smart in the process so some half ass who thinks they know it all can't snowball you.
 

tolbertjd

PEB Forum Regular Member
PEB Forum Veteran
I am on meds that say can cause weight gain. How did you get your PCM to write that out on a profile? My shirt keeps asking about my PT test even though I walk with a cane and am in a "medcine haze" every day. Thanks for any help you can give me.
 

KD5BFF

PEB Forum Regular Member
I haven't been on any meds that have caused weight gain. There were a couple of guys on here that said they were on meds like that, you might send them a PM directly and ask them. As far as the PT testing and walking with a cane, has a AF Form 422 been issued from your HAWC? What are your limitations on the AF Form 469? Keep in mind that your doc writes the 469 and a fitness guru signs fills out and signs the 422. They changed things in the new reg but I am still looking at 422's for me signed by the HAWC in the doc's spot. I find that a legal issue for a fitness specialist to sign off in my PCM's signature block (Jason jump on this if you have anything). The doc should review the 422 and make sure that the HAWC is doing the right thing, but it isn't happening where I am. The MDG/CC apparently gave a the HAWC open reign to do what ever they want. I think you should have to tape and that's it. If you are meds that cause sudden uncontrolled weight gain, you should be able to fight for total exemption.
 

marmaduke

PEB Forum Regular Member
My MEB package has gone up too the IPEB. Everyone I have spoke too seems to think I will be separated. The 618 states I have moderate COPD with bronchiectasis and mild reactive airway disease. My PEBLO seems to believe I will get the boot. Hopefully with retirement pay.

As for my stripe, well my CC has gone out on a limb and not redlined my stripe. I put on TSgt 01 Dec.
 
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