VASRD ratings question

Alexis Rain

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I was just wondering what the va uses as a standard for Determining whether something meets a specific element of the VASRD for mental health ratings. I understand what the VASRD is and the different elements for specific ratings but what defines how much or how often something happens before it can be considered as meeting the criteria for that specific condition for rating purposes.

Alexis Rain

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
I’m sorry if that sounds like a stupid question. I’m just trying to inform myself as much knowledge as possible on how the system works.


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The diagnosis of a MH illness is based on standards in the DSM. A book published by the APA, not the VA.

I'm not sure exactly what your asking, so my answer may be off the mark.


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This is how the VA rates mental health. The only time it mentions how often something happens is how often panic attack’s occur.

General Rating Formula for Mental Disorders:

Total occupational and social impairment, due to such symptoms as:
gross impairment in thought processes or communication;
persistent delusions or hallucinations; grossly inappropriate
behavior; persistent danger of hurting self or others; intermittent
inability to perform activities of daily living (including maintenance
of minimal personal hygiene); disorientation to time or place; memo
loss for names of close relatives, own occupation, or own name 100%

Occupational and social impairment, with deficiencies in most areas,
such as work, school, family relations, judgment, thinking, or mood,
due to such symptoms as: suicidal ideation; obsessional rituals
which interfere with routine activities; speech intermittently illogical,
obscure, or irrelevant; near-continuous panic or depression affecting
the ability to function independently, appropriately and effectively;
impaired impulse control (such as unprovoked irritability with periods
of violence); spatial disorientation; neglect of personal appearance and
hygiene; difficulty in adapting to stressful circumstances (including
work or a worklike setting); inability to establish and maintain
effective relationships 70%

Occupational and social impairment with reduced reliability and
productivity due to such symptoms as: flattened affect; circumstantial,
circumlocutory, or stereotyped speech; panic attacks more than once
a week; difficulty in understanding complex commands; impairment
of short- and long-term memory (e.g., retention of only highly learned
material, forgetting to complete tasks); impaired judgment; impaired
abstract thinking; disturbances of motivation and mood; difficulty in
establishing and maintaining effective work and social relationships 50%

Occupational and social impairment with occasional decrease in work
efficiency and intermittent periods of inability to perform occupational
tasks (although generally functioning satisfactorily, with routine
behavior, self-care, and conversation normal), due to such symptoms
as: depressed mood, anxiety, suspiciousness, panic attacks (weekly or
less often), chronic sleep impairment, mild memory loss (such as
forgetting names, directions, recent events) 30%

Occupational and social impairment due to mild or transient symptoms
which decrease work efficiency and ability to perform occupational
tasks only during periods of significant stress, or; symptoms controlled
by continuous medication 10%

A mental condition has been formally diagnosed, but symptoms are not
severe enough either to interfere with occupational and social
functioning or to require continuous medication0%

Alexis Rain

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
I guess my question should have been worded differently. Let’s say for example “difficulty understanding complex commands” or “suspiciousness” for example. How would the rating person determine whether that meets a certain percentage criteria? Is it based on the medical record, the condition at the time of the evaluation or what?
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