Up to 200,000 Vietnam Veterans are potentially eligible to receive VA disability through this initiative designed to compensate veterans with Hairy Cell and other B-Cell Leukemias, Parkinson’s diseaseand ischemic heart disease.
Veterans with these conditions who served in Vietnam between Jan. 9, 1962, and May 7, 1975, are presumed to have contracted them via exposure to Agent Orange and don't need to prove their military service caused their illnesses, according to the VA.
The recognition of the presumptive illness, especially ischemic heart disease, which is common in an aged population, could open the door to tens of thousands seeking compensation. Spouses who lost husbands or wives to these conditions are also in line for awards.
Compensating veterans who qualify under these newly recognized conditions is expected to take several months, but all veterans exposed to Agent Orange and suffer from one of the three diseases are urged to submit an application for an award.
Other recognized illnesses under VA's "presumption" rule for Agent Orange are: subacute transient peripheral neuropathy, chloracne, chronic lymphocytic leukemia, diabetes mellitus (Type 2), Hodgkin's disease, multiple myeloma, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, porphyria cutanea tarda, prostate cancer, respiratory cancers, tissue sarcoma (other than osteosarcoma, chondrosarcoma, Kaposi's sarcoma, or mesothelioma) and amyloidosis.
Veterans interested in applying for compensation under one of the three new Agent Orange illnesses, should go to the VA Agent Orange Exposure web pagefor more information. or call 800-827-1000.