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Mr. STANDISH. I think that will be tentatively 0. K.

Mr. MATHEWS. If somebody else is going to use this room, we will use another, otherwise we will use this. We will have to fix some time. If we have to adjourn it for some other reason, the veterans organizations and Veterans' Bureau will be notified.

Mr. STANDISH. Yes, sir.

Mr. MATHEWS. If there is anyone else here who wants to be notified, if they will give their names to Mr. Standish they will be notified. Otherwise, we will continue hearings on these tuberculosis bills until 10 o'clock next Thursday morning, June 19, 1947. The hearing now stands adjourned.

(Whereupon, at 12:10 p. m., the committee adjourned until June 19, 1947, at 10 a. m.)

PROV ING STATUTORY AWARDS FOR ARRESTED TU

BERCULOSIS; INCREASING INCOME LIMITATIONS FOR PENSION PURPOSES; AND GRANTING PRESUMPTIVE SERVICE CONNECTION FOR TROPICAL DISEASES

THURSDAY, JUNE 19, 1947

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
SUBCOMMITTEE ON COMPENSATION AND PENSIONS
OF THE COMMITTEE ON VETERANS' AFFAIRS,

Washington, D. C. The subcommittee met, pursuant to notice, at 10 a. m., in the hearing room of the committee, Old House Office Building, Hon. Frank A. Mathews, Jr. (chairman), presiding. ·Present: Representatives Mathers, Vail, and Donahue. Mr. MATHEWS. The committee will come to order, please.

I believe there was some one who wanted to present some more testimony in regard to these so-called tuberculosis bills. Is there anyone here who wants to present that testimony?

Mr. HAYDEN. Mr. Kraabel, our rehabilitation director of the Legion, is here.

Mr. MATHEWS. All right. We will hear him, if there is nobody here from the Veterans of Foreign Wars. I understood they wanted to be heard further on these bills. If there is no one here from them, as yet, we will hear from Mr. Kraabel.

Mr. HAYDEN. Thank you.

STATEMENT OF T. 0. KRAABEL, NATIONAL REHABILITATION

DIRECTOR, AMERICAN LEGION

Mr. KRAABEL. Mr. Chairman and members of the committee, my name is T. O. Kraabel, national rehabilitation director of the American Legion. This will take only a moment. Since the last meeting we have prepared a statement regarding H. R. 1200 and the Legion's position, and I offer that to you, Mr. Chairman, for the record.

That is all I have. Mr. Mathews. That will be inserted in the record at this point, Mr. Kraabel.

Mr. KRAABEL. Thank you.

73

(The paper referred to is as follows:)

STATEMENT OF NATIONAL REHABILITATION DIRECTOR T. 0. KRAABEL, THE AMERICAN

LEGION, ON H. R. 1200, EIGHTIETH CONGRESS, TO THE SUBCOMMITTEE ON COMPENSATION AND PENSIONS, COMMITTEE ON VETERANS' AFFAIRS, HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

On January 21, 1947, by request of the American Legion, the Honorable James T. Patterson, Member of Congress of Connecticut, introduced in the House of Representatives H. R. 1200, Eightieth Congress, first session, which was referred to the Committee on Veterans' Affairs.

On behalf of the American Legion, the result of further careful study of the subject, I desire at this time to offer a substitute bill in which agreement was reached by three veterans' organizations in a conference following hearings of this subcommittee last Thursday, June 12. As presently proposed, as follows, the bill will best accomplish the result sought.

The bill reads:

"A BILL To provide a minimum rating for service-connected cases of arrested tuberculosis

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That any ex-service person shown to have had an active tuberculous disease which is or shall be held to be the result of active military or naval service, who in the judgment of the Administrator of Veterans' Affairs has reached a condition of complete arrest of his disease, shall receive compensation based upon a rating of not less than 50 percentum therefor: Provided, however, That nothing in this provision shall deny a beneficiary the right to any higher rating otherwise provided : Provided further, That no ratings under this Act shall be retroactive."

In national convention assembled in Chicago in 1945 and in San Francisco in 1946, the American Legion adopted resolution seeking to place veterans of World Wars I and II on a parity in the matter of payment by the Veterans Administration of disability compensation upon attainment of complete arrest of a service-connected active tuberculous disease.

The American Legion was sponsor of the World War Veterans' Act of 1924, and fostered subsequent amendments dictated by experience. The original act, Public Law 242, Sixty-eighth Congress, approved June 7, 1924, and the amendatory act of March 4, 1925, Public Law 628, Sixty-eighth Congress, contained no provision in section 202 (7) for a statutory compensation rating or award for a service-connected arrested tuberculosis.

Painstaking research by medical advisors to the Legion's national rehabilitation commitee over this period of 1924 and 1925, and experience gained throughout the United States by the organization's representatives assisting veterans in prosecution of claims, caused the American Legion to seek in the Congress a protective provision in the nature of a minimum monthly compensation award for World War I veterans suffering from a directly or presumptively serviceconnected tuberculous disease of which complete arrest had been attained.

Careful study had shown that these disabled veterans experienced real difficulty in competing, under ordinary conditions of life, with persons who had had no such active disease process. In attempting to earn a livelihood they found they could not keep up the pace set by fellow wage earners not so handicapped. Either they were obliged to find less remunerative employment in an occupation in which they lacked skill, but in which less stress was endured, or they reactivated the disease process by the struggle in competitive effort and then became unemployable and decreased their life expectancy.

It was to enable this disabled group to select an occupation that would restore an earning capacity commensurate with that which existed prior to incurrence of the handicap of an arrested tuberculosis that the Sixty-ninth Congress, following the hearing of exhaustive testimony of representatives of the American Legion and of the Veterans' Administration's predecessor agency, the United States Veterans' Bureau, enacted Public Law 325, approved July 2, 1926. This amended section 202 (7) of the World War Veterans' Act of 1924 so that provision was made as to World War I cases:

"That any ex-service person shown to have had a tuberculous disease of a compensable degree, who in the judgment of the director has reached a condition of complete arrest of his disease, shall receive compensation of not less than $50 per month

* "

The Claims Statistics Service of the Veteran's Administration Central Office has a record of 39,798 World War I veterans who today are paid monthly a statutory award for a service-connected arrested tuberculosis. By virtue of the increased rates granted through approval August 7, 1946, of Public Law 662 enacted by the Seventy-ninth Congress the monetary benefit payable monthly in these cases is now $60 when the service connection is direct and $45 when the service connection is presumptive.

It is recognized that the Congress has not yet seen fit to accept the Legion's proposal for full payment of disability compensation in presumptively serviceconnected cases (H. R. 1325, 80th Cong., 1st sess.) so that only three-fourths of the full rate is paid, when the service connection is presumptive, in accordance with the provisions of Section 28, Public Law 141, Seventy-third Congress, approved March 28, 1934.

Statutory awards for arrested tuberculosis were not increased by 15 per centum June 1, 1944, by Section 1. Public Law 312, Seventy-eighth Congress, approved May 27, 1944, when other service-connected disability compensation rates in World War I and II veterans' cases were so adjusted, as the language of the section specifically excepted the "special awards and allowances fixed by law.”

The Seventy-first Congress amended section 202 (7) in Public Law 522 approved July 3, 1930 to make further provision for cases of arrested tuberculosis, adding this sentence in the section :

“The director is hereby authorized and directed to insert in the rating schedule a minimum rating of permanent partial 25 per centum for arrested or apparently cured tuberculosis.' This referred to the Schedule of Disability Ratings, 1925, then in use.

The Veterans' Administration has of record 4,442 veterans of World War I in receipt of monthly monetary benefits based upon such a rating who have no entitlement to the statutory award because other than an arrested tuberculosis has never been conceded to be service connected. With the increase granted, effective September 1, 1946, the disability compensation payment to $30 in the directly service-connected case, $22.50 in the presumably service-connected case.

or those, veterans of World Wars I and II whose tuberculosis disease is service-connected by virtue of Public Law 2, Seventy-third Congress, approved March 20, 1933, and Veterans' Regulation 1 (a), as amended, issued thereunder, there is no statutory rating or award.

The Administrator of Veterans' Affairs, by virtue of authority conferred upon him by Veterans' Regulation Numbered 3 (a), promulgated the “Schedule for Rating Disabilities, 1945 Edition.” Public Law 458, Seventy-ninth Congress, approved June 27, 1946 made ratings, based upon this schedule, effective as of the first day of April 1946.

The following provision is made on page 76 of this schedule under Diagnosis Code 6724 : Tuberculosis, pulmonary, chronic, arrested, or inactive, advancement unspecified :

Following moderately advanced or far-advanced active tuberculosis, with history of activity over a period of 5 years, including at least 18 months hospitalization, with continued dyspnea on exertion, debility, and chronic invalidism -

60 NOTE.—The above rating, though assigned on a permanent basis, will be subject to reexamination in 30 months. For 6 months following hospitalization on account of active pulmonary tuberculosis_

100 For a further 412 years.

50 For a further 5 years.

30 NOTE.—The 50-percent, 30-percent, and 20-percent rating for arrested or inactive pulmonary tuberculosis will not be combined with ratings for other respiratory disability. Following thoracoplasty, the rating will be for tuberculosis pleurisy (see pleurity, following empyema) or for rib resection combined with the rating for collapsed lung. Following faradvanced active lesions, the permanent rating will be 30 percent. Following moderately advanced lesions, the permanent rating, after 10 years, will be 20 percent, provided there is continued disability, dyspnea on

exertion, impairment of health, etc., otherwise." When hearings opened on H. R. 1200 last Thursday, June 12, the senior medical consultant, H. D. Shapiro, M.D., of the American Legion, presented the medical testimony in support of a statutory minimum rating for arrested tuberculosis as now proposed. Dr. Shapiro is on my staff, is with me today, and, if the Chair desires, will answer any further questions, that may arise in the minds of the

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