USPHS MRB Experience

Helper29

Registered Member
I wanted to share my experience with the USPHS Medical Board so that others know what to expect and can have the best outcome. In my experience (and those I have talked with) the board takes about 7 months to hear your case. Sending in records from my providers to the board was very frustrating for me. The board requests that you contact your provider and have them send records directly to MAB. I requested my records to be sent from my providers to MAB but when I followed up with MAB (multiple times) they said they did not get them. I called my providers and they said they had sent them to the correct fax number. I then (on multiple occasions) had my providers refax the medical records. When I would request a list of medical records that MAB had obtained they would be vague about what they had and in multiple instances would not return my emails. I would ask MAB to follow up with me when they received an important fax and they never did. I find this odd because to fax documents in our eOPFs they can email us right away indicating it is in our record but cannot set up the same system for medical records.

I decided to appeal my case with a lawyer because of the low rating I had received. I also felt that the MAB had communicated poorly on such an important issue and that I did not have an advocate on my side. Before my first hearing I had no idea what the Medical Board (who are different from those that work at MAB) was going to see in my records. MAB has two medical officers that sift through your records and decided what the board will see. When I appealed I saw what medical documents the initial board had seen and significant documents were missing-documents I had repeatedly sent to MAB. It appeared as if the records where cherry picked to paint the picture less severe than it was. Many of the staff at MAB have been there for a long time and know how to play the game. They can potentially influence the board members (who are USPHS officers within the area with normal PHS jobs).

When I received the initial board report, it was discovered that the board had not rated my condition correctly and had missed other significant conditions that I had. I had hired a lawyer that specialized in military disability boards. He knew exactly how to rate my condition and what medical evidence to obtain. He was very knowledgeable about the VA disability rating system used by MAB and an advocate I could trust. I cannot stress this enough, GET A LAWYER THAT SPECIALIZES IN PHS MEDICAL REVIEW BOARDS (Jason Perry, Military Disability Attorney). There are lawyers out there that do not know or have enough experience with military medial review boards and can hurt your case. I was fortunate enough to have a positive outcome at the appeals board because of my lawyer.

I hope this helps those PHS officers going through an unexpected difficult medical condition and keep up the good fight.
 

alaskagirl

Registered Member
I wanted to share my experience with the USPHS Medical Board so that others know what to expect and can have the best outcome. In my experience (and those I have talked with) the board takes about 7 months to hear your case. Sending in records from my providers to the board was very frustrating for me. The board requests that you contact your provider and have them send records directly to MAB. I requested my records to be sent from my providers to MAB but when I followed up with MAB (multiple times) they said they did not get them. I called my providers and they said they had sent them to the correct fax number. I then (on multiple occasions) had my providers refax the medical records. When I would request a list of medical records that MAB had obtained they would be vague about what they had and in multiple instances would not return my emails. I would ask MAB to follow up with me when they received an important fax and they never did. I find this odd because to fax documents in our eOPFs they can email us right away indicating it is in our record but cannot set up the same system for medical records.

I decided to appeal my case with a lawyer because of the low rating I had received. I also felt that the MAB had communicated poorly on such an important issue and that I did not have an advocate on my side. Before my first hearing I had no idea what the Medical Board (who are different from those that work at MAB) was going to see in my records. MAB has two medical officers that sift through your records and decided what the board will see. When I appealed I saw what medical documents the initial board had seen and significant documents were missing-documents I had repeatedly sent to MAB. It appeared as if the records where cherry picked to paint the picture less severe than it was. Many of the staff at MAB have been there for a long time and know how to play the game. They can potentially influence the board members (who are USPHS officers within the area with normal PHS jobs).

When I received the initial board report, it was discovered that the board had not rated my condition correctly and had missed other significant conditions that I had. I had hired a lawyer that specialized in military disability boards. He knew exactly how to rate my condition and what medical evidence to obtain. He was very knowledgeable about the VA disability rating system used by MAB and an advocate I could trust. I cannot stress this enough, GET A LAWYER THAT SPECIALIZES IN PHS MEDICAL REVIEW BOARDS (Jason Perry, Military Disability Attorney). There are lawyers out there that do not know or have enough experience with military medial review boards and can hurt your case. I was fortunate enough to have a positive outcome at the appeals board because of my lawyer.

I hope this helps those PHS officers going through an unexpected difficult medical condition and keep up the good fight.


Hello Helper29,

Thank you so much for the informative post. As a USPHS officer myself it has offered me reassurance.

I am a United States Public Health Service (USPHS) Commissioned Officer that has had numerous health issues since September 2013 and I am still undergoing testing and treatment to try to resolve them.

My Fitness for Duty Board met today at the USPHS Medical Affairs Branch in Silver Spring, Maryland and recommended a medical separation with severance pay. This decision is completely unacceptable to me after 13 years of very loyal and faithful service. I have been a very high performing officer for over 13 years, have obtained my Masters Degree in Nursing as recommended by the promotion board so that I can get my promotion to O6-Captain and I have been accepted into post graduate school for my Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner so that I can once again serve our military Soldiers in behavioral health. Due to being in the Fitness for Duty process I am not eligible for promotion.

From the phone call that I received today from medical affairs branch (MAB) the board is recommending medical separation vs. medical retirement based on that they only rated one of my disabilities at 20%; the undifferentiated connective tissue disease. It does not appear that they even rated or considered the diagnosis of fibromyalgia, sero-negative rheumatoid arthritis, multiple fractures in my feet, osteopenia, irritable bowel syndrome, multiple skin issues, anxiety and depression, etc. I am still undergoing testing and trials of new medications to bring all of this to resolve and hopefully bring this all into remission.

I have multiple diagnoses and feel that after 13 years of faithful service that I deserve to have all diagnoses rated and a medical retirement not a medical separation with severance pay.

I was in the hopes that I would be given the opportunity to get my health issues resolved and/or stabilized so that I could return to active duty and finish my career.

If you have any further recommendations it will be much appreciated. I am so happy to here that Jason Perry represents USPHS officers as the Maj that I spoke with today at the Office of the Airman's Counsel was not sure if he did or not. I am happy to hear that he was successful in your case. I am praying that he can help me as well. Your assistance is much appreciated. Thank you.
 

Miserable

Registered Member
Thank you to you both for posting your experiences. AlaskaGirl , I am upset to read your negative experience. Do up have an update? I especially want to know if the attorney is able to help you. I am now more terrified of undergoing this process. I wonder if you and I could communicate directly but more important, privately...
 

alaskagirl

Registered Member
Thank you to you both for posting your experiences. AlaskaGirl , I am upset to read your negative experience. Do up have an update? I especially want to know if the attorney is able to help you. I am now more terrified of undergoing this process. I wonder if you and I could communicate directly but more important, privately...
Miserable,
I apologize but I am just now seeing your post. I would be happy to talk with you further. Let me know if you wish to communicate further and I will send to you my personal email address.
 

USPHS27

Registered Member
Hello Helper29,

Thank you so much for the informative post. As a USPHS officer myself it has offered me reassurance.

I am a United States Public Health Service (USPHS) Commissioned Officer that has had numerous health issues since September 2013 and I am still undergoing testing and treatment to try to resolve them.

My Fitness for Duty Board met today at the USPHS Medical Affairs Branch in Silver Spring, Maryland and recommended a medical separation with severance pay. This decision is completely unacceptable to me after 13 years of very loyal and faithful service. I have been a very high performing officer for over 13 years, have obtained my Masters Degree in Nursing as recommended by the promotion board so that I can get my promotion to O6-Captain and I have been accepted into post graduate school for my Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner so that I can once again serve our military Soldiers in behavioral health. Due to being in the Fitness for Duty process I am not eligible for promotion.

From the phone call that I received today from medical affairs branch (MAB) the board is recommending medical separation vs. medical retirement based on that they only rated one of my disabilities at 20%; the undifferentiated connective tissue disease. It does not appear that they even rated or considered the diagnosis of fibromyalgia, sero-negative rheumatoid arthritis, multiple fractures in my feet, osteopenia, irritable bowel syndrome, multiple skin issues, anxiety and depression, etc. I am still undergoing testing and trials of new medications to bring all of this to resolve and hopefully bring this all into remission.

I have multiple diagnoses and feel that after 13 years of faithful service that I deserve to have all diagnoses rated and a medical retirement not a medical separation with severance pay.

I was in the hopes that I would be given the opportunity to get my health issues resolved and/or stabilized so that I could return to active duty and finish my career.

If you have any further recommendations it will be much appreciated. I am so happy to here that Jason Perry represents USPHS officers as the Maj that I spoke with today at the Office of the Airman's Counsel was not sure if he did or not. I am happy to hear that he was successful in your case. I am praying that he can help me as well. Your assistance is much appreciated. Thank you.
Hello, I am a USPHS officer. I have gone through a MEB evaluation. I am interesting in talking with you.

Regards,

PHS Wounded Warrior
 

alaskagirl

Registered Member
Thank you to you both for posting your experiences. AlaskaGirl , I am upset to read your negative experience. Do up have an update? I especially want to know if the attorney is able to help you. I am now more terrified of undergoing this process. I wonder if you and I could communicate directly but more important, privately...
Hello Miserable,
I am so sorry that I am just now seeing your post. Even more so I am sorry to hear that you are having a poor experience as well. I have not been on here in a long time as I just never see any information about the USPHS. I would be most happy to communicate with you and in a private mode. Please reply to this post and we can exchange contact information.
AlaskaGirl
 

alaskagirl

Registered Member
Hello, I am a USPHS officer. I have gone through a MEB evaluation. I am interesting in talking with you.

Regards,

PHS Wounded Warrior
Hello USPHS27,
I would be most happy to talk with you. Please reply to this post and we can exchange contact information.
AlaskaGirl
 

Cantdeal

Registered Member
Hello USPHS27,
I would be most happy to talk with you. Please reply to this post and we can exchange contact information.
AlaskaGirl
I would love to speak with someone who has gone through the PHS medical retirement... would anyone be willing to speak with me about PHS medical retirement? Thanks in advance
 
data-matched-content-ui-type="image_stacked" data-matched-content-rows-num="3" data-matched-content-columns-num="1" data-ad-format="autorelaxed">
Top