Why is the Coast Guard still using Legacy?

tsj12bbm

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Just a question that maybe one of the experts or long time hands on the board may have some insight into, but why is the USCG not using IDES?
 

grizz13

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I think you may be a little misinformed. The Legacy system was stopped in 2011, though the SMs who were already going through the Legacy process stayed in the Legacy. You are in the IDES process, if you were in Legacy you would not have gotten as far as you already have gotten by your timeline.
 

Ed Mercanti

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Not sure . . . The Coast Guard is not under DOD until a war or national emergency. Otherwise they're under Homeland Security (formally under Department of Transportation and before that the Treasury). So the DOD implementation of the IDES may not apply to the Coast Guard.
 

maparker

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DoD told the Services they could continue to use the legacy DES for new entrants and academy cadets/midshipmen (Which is total BS). Not sure that applies to the USCG. Are you a new entrant or a n academy midshipman?

Mike
 

tsj12bbm

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@grizz13 Not misinformed, I'm legacy as is the entire Coast Guard. None of us going through the PDES process see the VA until after we're out. It's a rush even to do BDD, since we normally only get 60 days until out date, not processing date; actual retirement/separation date, from the time orders hit the board and the VA requires a firm date to begin BDD.

@Ed Mercanti But why doesn't it apply? Was it a DOD initiative that brought about the IDES or a Congressional Law/mandate? If an initiative, ok. If IDES is the "law of the land", then the USCG is wrong, which wouldn't surprise me at all. The Coast Guard is at all times a branch of the Armed Forces, even while under DHS.

@maparker Neither one, I'm a Chief with 14 years active service.

If IDES was something that DOD thought up and implemented in a bubble on their own, then the COMDT of the CG and SEC of DHS may have just decided not to do it for whatever reason, or they don't even know what IDES is, I wouldn't be surprised. If it was a law or mandate that created the IDES, then the CG is in the wrong.

The Legacy system is horrible. My four biggest issues with it are 1) We don't know whether we are fit or unfit until we actually get our ratings from the IPEB. In the very recent past, this would take 2-3 YEARS on average. They did some fixes or something, because they are now "advertising" 6 months or less for the IPEB to adjudicate, but my MEB took 6 months. 2)We have no interaction with the VBA whatsoever, so our members still have to fight that fight when they're out and on their own. 3)The IPEB actually decides the ratings. People in the employ of the CG, decide how much the CG is going to have to pay out. Now, in a perfect world, they'd follow the VARSD and there wouldn't be any issues, but it's still CG people deciding what percentage the CG is liable. 4)PEBLO? I read most everyone on the forum bitching about there PEBLO, but I wish I had someone that I could drive a hour or two and see face to face. They say we have a PEBLO, but there is ONE for the whole CG and he is in DC. I've had 1 interaction with him and that was my MEB check-in at the IPEB. When I signed my rights and acknowledgement, I wasn't presented the opportunity to sit down with counsel or a PEBLO. We don't have the chance to confer with counsel until we have our ratings. I tried.

Now, I'm an E7/Chief and was in a Command Cadre Position when this all started and I honestly think this is going to work out ok in my situation, but, if I've had to work this hard to protect my interests and find information, WTF is that non-rate or 2 year E4 going to do?

Tom
 

grizz13

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@grizz13 Not misinformed, I'm legacy as is the entire Coast Guard. None of us going through the PDES process see the VA until after we're out. It's a rush even to do BDD, since we normally only get 60 days until out date, not processing date; actual retirement/separation date, from the time orders hit the board and the VA requires a firm date to begin BDD.
Not sure . . . The Coast Guard is not under DOD until a war or national emergency. Otherwise they're under Homeland Security (formally under Department of Transportation and before that the Treasury). So the DOD implementation of the IDES may not apply to the Coast Guard.
That I did not know, I agree with Mike that it is BS.
 

tsj12bbm

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The attached DTM was issued as a directive to the military departments.

Military Departments are the Army, Air Force, Marines, and Navy http://www.defense.gov/pubs/almanac/mil_depts.html
Thanks for the link. That gives me somewhere to start since most of our Instructions on the Medical side reference DOD Instructions, but I'm still looking for what caused SECDEF to issue this. IE. Did DOD implement this on their own, or were they instructed to do so by Congress.

Thanks again.
 

tsj12bbm

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And I still can't understand why one system for one group of Service Members and a different system for another group. That's not even talking about the groups that Mike mentioned earlier in this discussion.

While the USCG isn't under a military department, it is the fifth branch of the Armed Forces under Title 10, and further defined under Title 14. It isn't a Uniformed Service like the USPHS or NOAA, contrary to what many think. Many Coast Guardsmen have served in Iraq, Iraqi TTW and even in Afghanistan. Myself having done the first 2, it just really feels like a 2nd class system and it needs to be changed. I don't see overwhelming difficulty in making the change and maybe I'm seeing my calling for when I'm done with this process.
 

Jason Perry

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Short answer, because Congress has not made the USCG implement IDES.

The 2008 NDAA directed the Service Secretaries and the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to:
http://www.pebforum.com/site/threads/sec-1612-meb-peb-of-recovering-servicemembers.247/
"(b) Physical Disability Evaluations of Recovering Service Members-
    • (1) IN GENERAL- Not later than July 1, 2008, the Secretary of Defense and the Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall develop a policy on improvements to the processes, procedures, and standards for the conduct of physical disability evaluations of recovering service members by the military departments and by the Department of Veterans Affairs.
    • (2) ELEMENTS- The policy on improvements to processes, procedures, and standards required under this subsection shall include and address the following:
      • (A) A clearly-defined process of the Department of Defense and the Department of Veterans Affairs for disability determinations of recovering service members.
      • (B) To the extent feasible, procedures to eliminate unacceptable discrepancies and improve consistency among disability ratings assigned by the military departments and the Department of Veterans Affairs, particularly in the disability evaluation of recovering service members, which procedures shall be subject to the following requirements and limitations:
        • (i) Such procedures shall apply uniformly with respect to recovering service members who are members of the regular components of the Armed Forces and recovering service members who are members of the National Guard and Reserve.
      • (ii) Under such procedures, each Secretary of a military department shall, to the extent feasible, utilize the standard schedule for rating disabilities in use by the Department of Veterans Affairs, including any applicable interpretation of such schedule by the United States Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims, in making any determination of disability of a recovering service member, except as otherwise authorized by section 1216a of title 10, United States Code (as added by section 1642 of this Act)....."
As a result, the DoD set up the "Pilot Program" (which was, essentially, IDES, before it got its name). Then the DTM 11-015 followed. Essentially, Congress left out the CG (as well as USPHS and NOAA). That is the only reason I can think of.
 

tsj12bbm

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That's exactly what I was looking for, thank-you Jason. Now I have a starting place. I've been thinking a lot about this over the past 9 months or so, but as I'm drawing nearer to the end(maybe) and thinking about what I'm going to spend my time and energy on, I'm really thinking this is a change that is possible.

Tom
 

maparker

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Jason,

Does the USCG have the 2008 requirement to rate per the VARSD? I know this has always been the law (at least from the late 40's) but were they included when Congress reemphasized the requirement in 2008?

Mike
 

Jason Perry

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Jason,

Does the USCG have the 2008 requirement to rate per the VARSD? I know this has always been the law (at least from the late 40's) but were they included when Congress reemphasized the requirement in 2008?

Mike
Yes....

"(a) Utilization of VA schedule for rating disabilities in determinations of disability.
  • (1) In making a determination of disability of a member of the armed forces for purposes of this chapter [10 USCS §§ 1201 et seq.], the Secretary concerned--
    • (A) shall, to the extent feasible, utilize the schedule for rating disabilities in use by the Department of Veterans Affairs, including any applicable interpretation of the schedule by the United States Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims; and
    • (B) except as provided in paragraph (2), may not deviate from the schedule or any such interpretation of the schedule."
10 USCS § 1216a


"a) In general. The following definitions apply in this title
  • 1) The term "United States", in a geographic sense, means the States and the District of Columbia.
  • (2) [Deleted]
  • (3) The term "possessions" includes the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Guano Islands, so long as they remain possessions, but does not include any Commonwealth.
  • (4) The term "armed forces" means the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard."
10 USCS § 101
 
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