STAND TO!

Edition: Tue, May 20, 2008
Current Edition | FOCUS Submission Guidelines | Stand-To Fact Sheet | Printable Version

WHAT THEY'RE SAYING

"He's a hero in our family. He sets an example for all of us. The bells echoed name after name. They seemed to ring on for future generations."

-Doreen Toomalatai, sister of a Soldier killed in battle, attending a 1st Cavalry Division memorial rededication

Cav memorial rededication honors Soldiers' and Families' sacrifices

TODAY'S FOCUS

Medical Evaluation Board /Physical Evaluation Board Process

What is it?

The timely processing of Soldiers with injuries or impairments has a major impact on army readiness. The Army Medical Evaluation Board (MEB) is designed to evaluate a Soldier's medical condition to determine if he/she meets medical retention standards for continued military service. Soldiers who require an MEB are not automatically discharged from military service. The MEB documents the Soldier's medical condition(s) and duty limitation(s) and refers him/her to the Physical Evaluation Board (PEB) if it is determined that the Soldier no longer meets medical retention standards. The PEB is the only board in the military that can determine whether a Soldier is fit or unfit for continued military service. The PEB also determines whether the Soldier's disability is compensable.

What has the Army done?

The Army listened to the concerns of wounded, injured and ill warriors in transition and Family members and is exploring ways to improve the MEB/PEB process for Soldiers. The Army's goal is for Soldiers to complete the MEB process within 90 days. However, each case is unique and an MEB for some Soldiers may take more or less than 90 days to complete. To improve the MEB/PEB process, the Army:

- Launched the MY MEB/PEB Web site in 2007, to provide Soldiers with an online tool to track the progress of their MEB/PEB.
- Launched the Comprehensive Transition Plan in March 2008, to focus on healing the whole person - body, mind, heart and spirit - and not just physical well-being.
- Collaborated with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to install federal recovery care coordinators at Army hospitals to assist severely injured Soldiers during the MEB/PEB process, follow Soldiers through separation from the military, transition to veteran status and coordinate support services between state, private and volunteer agencies.
- Developed a Physical Disability Evaluation (PDES) System handbook to inform Soldiers and Families.

What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future?

In coordination with the Department of Defense (DOD) and VA, launched a PDES pilot program at three designated military treatment facilities in the National Capital Region. The pilot program will evaluate DOD's use of a single physical examination to determine the medical fitness of wounded, ill and injured personnel to remain in the service; use of VA ratings to award disability compensation to Soldiers; and total time reduced in combining the DOD and VA evaluation systems. One of the goals of the pilot program is to have the Soldier's military and VA ratings both completed as the Soldier transitions from the Service and to have any VA payments begin within the month after leaving the service.

Why is this important to the Army?

Readiness and the health and welfare of all Soldiers are of the utmost importance to the Army. The Army wants Soldiers to be informed and understand the MEB/PEB process and the benefits they may be entitled to receive as compensation for injuries and illnesses incurred in the line-of-duty. Soldiers are also encouraged to ask questions about their medical condition and the expected timeline to complete each phase of the MEB/PEB process.

Resources:

U.S. Army Physical Disability Agency

Medical Evaluation Boards

U.S. Army Human Resource Web site

Social Security Web site

INFORMATION YOU CAN USE

- 2008 Strategic Communication Guide - Read the 2008 Army Strategic Communication Guide for key messages and updates

- Strategic Communication Coordination Group (SCCG) Workspace

- Army Public Affairs Portal

- Stories of Valor

- Speaker's Toolkit

A CULTURE OF ENGAGEMENT

The Army Community Relations Calendar

Bloggers Roundtable

Westerners play pivotal role in Afghan rebuilding

Military retools detainee releases

CALENDAR

May- July 4, 2008: Season of Remembrance

May 2008:
- Asian - Pacific Heritage Month

- Mental Health Month:

- Army Behavioral Health

- DOD Military Health System

Saturday, June 7, 2008: The New Orleans Army Birthday Ball

Saturday, June 14, 2008: The U.S. Army Birthday Ball

NEWS ABOUT THE ARMY

WAR ON TERROR NEWS

OF INTEREST

WORLD VIEW

WHAT'S BEING SAID IN BLOGS