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service," or that he had been in an endemic area after the service, under such circumstances that the disease might develop by reason of those facts. Would that be satisfactory to the Bureau?
Mr. BROOKS. Yes, sir.
Mr. MATHEWS. It would not be interpreted as narrowing your already liberal policy on this particular subject?
Mr. BROOKS. No, sir.
Mr. MATHEWS. In other words, I don't want any act to be passed about which the Veterans' Administration can say, “Well, we had provided liberal clauses in our regulations, but as we read this act, this narrows them down and the man doesn't get as much as he would have gotten under our regulations." That, I want to avoid. I think the members of the committee want to avoid any such result as that.
Mr. BROOKS. Yes.
Mr. MATHEWS. On the other hand, it may be reasonable to say that the Veterans' Administration should have the right by clear and convincing proof to establish the fact that the disease is not service connected in any way.
Mr. BROOKS. Yes, sir, I think so.
Mr. MATHEWS. I think in justice to the taxpayers that probably may be correct.
Mr. BROOKS. Yes.
Mr. MATHEws. I haven't studied it thoroughly. Offhand, I think that seems to be reasonable.
Mr. BROOKS. Yes.
Mr. Mathews. With such provisions as I have suggested, would there be any serious objection?
Mr. STEVENS. I think not, Mr. Chairman.
May I ask before the testimony is given on tuberculosis by Mr. Brooks, that the veterans' organizations be permitted to give the committee for study, drafts of the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, and Disabled Veterans have made! It would appear that the chairman's desire is to conclude the hearings on H. R 3650 so the minutes can be printed and this would wind that up.
Mr. MATHEWS. You feel it would be of some value to Mr. Brooks to have before him and have before the committe, the conclusions you reached on this thing? Is that it?
Mr. STEVENS. Yes, sir.
Mr. MATHEWs. This is on the tropical disease ?
Mr. STEVENS. No. Mr. Birdsall has. I gave him a copy of mine. They would be in the minutes for the consideration of the committee.
Mr. MATHEWS. All right. You want to insert them in the record?
Mr. MATHEWS. All right. We will allow you at this time to insert those into the record. Will you state what that is?
STATEMENT OF CHARLES W. STEVENS, AMERICAN LEGION
Mr. STEVENS. Yes.
First, Mr. Mathews, if I may, I would like to place in the record for the consideration of the committee, the present provisions of the law as contained in Veteran Regulation 1 (a), part I, paragraph I (c). That is the present provision which it is proposed be amended by adding additional proviso.
Mr. MATHEWS. All right. You want to insert in the record the additional provisos, too?
Mr. STEVENS. After that.
Mr. MATHEWS. Before you insert those provisos, will you state whose they are, or are they just the American Legion's?
Mr. STEVENS. The American Legion's, Mr. Mathews.
Mr. STEVENS. Yes, and the other organizations I believe desire to insert theirs.
As to the additional provisos, the title of the bill, H. R. 3650, would be changed to “Amend Veterans' Regulation No. 1 (a), part I, as amended, to establish an assured presumption of service connection of tropical diseases.” That would eliminate the present wording in the title, "conclusive presumption."
The American Legion does not believe in a conclusive presumption, believing that there should be the right of rebuttal based upon clear and unmistakable evidence of inception prior to or subsequent to active military or naval service.
The provisos also would eliminateMr. MATHEWS. That would take care of the matter that I just asked Mr. Brooks about?
Mr. STEVENS. Yes; it would. And the provisos also would eliminate the requirement of H. R. 3650 as contained in line 7 of that bill, that the tropical disease be diagnosed within 1 year of separation from active service because this organization feels that any evidence, whether it be medical or lay, proving the existence of the disease, should be acceptable to the Veterans' Administration.
Mr. MATHEWS. Whether within 1 year or not?
Mr. STEVENS. Within the year or subsequently, and in the last proviso, it is mentioned that subsequent to the year, a disease manifested may be service connected. We don't want to limit the service connection just to the showing within a year, because as is shown on page 64 of the schedule of rating disabilities, 1945 edition, leprosy is permitted five or six more years. Others are permitted 18 months, 3 years, and so forth. May I insert these in the record, Mr. Chairman? Mr. MATHEWS. You may. (The documents mentioned are as follows:)
VETERANS REGULATION 1 (A), PART I, PARAGRAPH I (C)
(c) That for the purposes of paragraph I (a) hereof a chronic disease becoming manifest to a degree of 10 percent or more within one year from the date of separation from active service as set forth therein shall be considered to have been incurred in or aggravated by service as specified therein notwithstanding there is no record of evidence of such disease during the period of active service; provided the person suffering from such disease served 90 days or more in the active service as specified therein: Provided, however, That where there is affirmative evidence to the contrary, or evidence to establish that an intercurrent injury or disease which is a recognized cause of such chronic disease, has been suffered between the date of discharge and the onset of the chronic disease, or the disability is due to the person's own misconduct, service connection will not be in order.
A BILL To amend Veterans Regulation No. 1 (a), part I, as amended, to establish an
assured presumption of service connection of tropical diseases Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That subparagraph (c) of paragraph I, part I, Veterans Regulation Numbered 1 (a), as amended, is hereby amended by substituting a colon for the period at the end thereof and adding the following: “Provided further, That, unless clear and unmistakable evidence discloses the inception of a so-called tropical disease prior to or subsequent to active military or naval war-time service, service connection shall not be denied a tropical disease manifest to a compensable degree within one year of separation from active service: And provided further, That nothing in this provision shall deny a veteran of wartime service in a region in which tropical diseases were endemic the right to a service-connection which may be granted based upon evidence of existence beyond the one-year period.”
Mr. MATHEWS. We will also grant permission to the Veterans Administration after you study these proposals, to send us a statement to be inserted in the record. 'I had rather conclude the hearings today, if that is satisfactory to you, but I want you to have a chance to study this American Legion proposal, then give us a statement on it to be inserted in the record. Mr. Brooks, will that be satisfactory?
Mr. BROOKS. We much prefer it that way; yes. Mr. MATHEWS. Is there anyone else here who wants to be heard on H. R. 3650? I think we heard from Mr. Camp on this subject.
Mr. STANDISH. He wants to present a statement similar to the American Legion, Quintus Camp, from the DAV.
STATEMENT OF QUINTUS CAMP, DISABLED AMERICAN VETERANS
Mr. CAMP. We would still like to have the conference that was suggested yesterday on this matter.
Mr. MATHEWS. I beg your pardon?
Mr. CAMP. We would still like to have the conference suggested yesterday on this matter.
Mr. MATHEWS. Yes. When we finish this hearing we will get together and arrange that.
Mr. CAMP. Very well. I have a substitute bill here for Mr. Patterson's bill, that calls these diseases by name, then provides that no fixed period, but the period shown by accepted, standard treatises shall be used and nothing shall be interpreted as preventing service connection for the rare cases that might go beyond the usual time.
Mr. MATHEWS. The suggestions you made embodied these veterans regulations within statutory law?
Mr. CAMP. That is correct, and, too, I have in here some of the chronic diseases that we believe should be listed as chronic diseases, for purposes of regulation 1 (c), that is paragraph i (c), such as, for instance, bronchiectasis, and scleraderma, and some other conditions we believe should be in that list of chronic diseases.
Mr. MATHEws. Very well, they may be inserted in the record, then I hope you fellows can get together on these various things and help us out.
(The paper referred to is as follows:)
A BILL To amend Veterans Regulation Numbered 1 (a), part I, as amended, to establish
a presumption of service connection for chronic and tropical diseases
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That subparagraph (c) of paragraph I, part I, Veterans Regulation Numbered 1 (a), as amended, is hereby amended by adding the following: The term “chronic disease” as used in this paragraph shall include anemia, primary; arteriosclerosis; arthritis; bronchiectasis; calculi of the kidney, bladder or gall bladder; cardiovascular-renal disease, including hypertension ; Buerger's disease and Raynaud's disease; cholecystitis; cirrhosis of the liver; coccidiomycosis, endocarditis; diabetes, mellitus; endochrinopathies; epilepsies; Hodgkin's disease; lukemia ; nephritis; osteitis, deformans; osteomalacia; organic diseases of the nervous system ; psychoses ; functional disorders of the nervous system; scleraderma ; tuberculosis, active; tumors, malignant or of the brain, cord, or peripheral nerves, and ulcers peptic (gastric or duodenal) : Provided further, That tropical diseases such as cholera, Asiatic; dysentery, amebic or bacillary ; filariasis; fungus diseases; lieshmaniasis; leprosy ; loiasis; malaria ; black water fever; onchocerciasis; oroya fever; orcontiasis; pinta; plague, relapsing fever; schistosomiasis; yaws; yellow fever and others and the resultant disorders or diseases of the integumentary, digestive, special sense or nervous systems because of suppressive therapy shall be accorded service connection when shown to exist to a degree of ten per centum or more within the incubation period thereof as set out in standard and accepted treatises. Nothing. in this paragraph shall be construed to prevent service connection for any of the diseases or disorders herein cited when shown subsequent to delimiting date if sound judgment, within the realm of reasonable probability and the known facts, indicates the existence of the disease or disorder within the time limit herein provided, the benefit of all reasonable doubt to be resolved in favor of the veteran.
Mr. MATHEWS. Does anyone else want to be heard on 3650 ?
STATEMENT OF W. M. FLOYD, NATIONAL COMMANDER, REGULAR
Mr. Floyd. Mr. Chairman and members of the committee, I am W. M. Floyd, national commander, Regular Veterans Association.
Our position on 3650, from a veterans' standpoint, is that the regulation here does not take care of the members of the Regular Establishments. You Congressmen are all aware of the fact that we have to have a full Military Establishment in order to protect our country, and we think that this bill here should have in there a provision for members of the Regular Establishment, so it won't be drawn up to apply only to World War veterans.
I would like, in turn, to meet with these other three organizations in order to get our members of the Regular Establishments in there, and I hope from time to time, when bills like this come up, that members of the Regular Establishments will be included.
Mr. MATHEWS. I can't control what is going to be introduced into Congress, Mr. Floyd, I assure you, except my own bills. Are you satisfied with the bill as it is if it included the peacetime veterans ?
Mr. Floyd. I am, if they took out that 1 year and add "malaria," or "tropical diseases"-take out the 1 year, and you can extend that to whatever time the committee might say, for 5 years, 7 years, or 10 years, either figure. I would say 10 years.
Mr. MATHEWS. What is the reason for extending it 10 years for malaria?
Mr. Floyd. We have had several cases in the Philippine Islands where we have the Filipino Scouts, and other members of the armed forces over there prior to the date of them taking over their own country and having their own state. I believe that 7 years would take care of all disabled veterans, whether it be in time of peace or at war.
Mr. MATHEWS. Do you think it is necessary to have 7-year presumptive period for malaria?
Mr. Floyd. I couldn't give you that definite figure.
Mr. Floyd. I heard the doctor previously state that malaria might start within 2 years after suppressives are stopped.
Mr. MATHEWS. Thank you, Mr. Floyd. Does anyone else want to be heard on 3650 ? If not, then, with the exception of a subsequent statement to be given, if it can be agreed upon by these various veterans' organizations, and a statement by the Veterans' Administration, can we conclude the hearings on 3650, with those two exceptions? Is there anybody from the VFW here?
Mr. WILLIAMSON. Yes, sir.
Mr. MATHEWS. I mean with the exception of you fellows getting together and agreeing on a statement? Of course, I will say, if you can't agree with the rest of them, you will be given permission also to put in your separate statement, if you so desire.
Mr. WILLIAMSON. Thank you.
(There follows at this point a joint statement and proposed bill as requested by Mr. Mathews, from the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Disabled American Veterans, Regular Veterans Association and AMVETS (American Veterans of World War II)):
JUNE 16, 1947. Hon. FRANK A. MATHEWS, Jr., Chairman, Subcommittee on Compensation and Pensions, House Committee on Veterans' Affairs,
House of Representatives, Washington, D. C. MY DEAR MR. MATHEWS: Following the adjournment of your subcommittee, Thursday, June 12, 1947, representatives of the American Legion, Disabled American Veterans, the Regular Veterans Association, and the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States conferred on some of the pending bills before your committee. The representatives of the organizations named unanimously approved a bill that is sponsored by all the organizations as shown by the names below.
The first proviso of the bill amending Veterans Regulation No. 1 (a), parts I and II, specifies the diseases that are, in our opinion, to be considered as chronic diseases for the purpose of 1 year presumption of service connection as now authorized by subparagraph (c) of paragraph I, part I, Veterans Regulation No. 1 (a), as amended. The majority of the diseases mentioned are contained in Veterans Administration R. and P. R. 1086, but we submit some additional conditions that should be incorporated in the diseases entitled to statutory presumption of service connection. The additional diseases that we feel are medically and legally sound are:
(1) Bronchiectasis: A chronic disease marked by dilation of the bronchi or bronchioles and clinically by fetid breath and paroxysmal coughing, with the expectoration of mucopurulent matter. A sufferer from this disease is markedly disabled.