Important Letters from PCT Units
Another reason you want to attend sessions in the PCT Unit program is that gives the Clinical Psychologists and the Psychiatrist an opportunity to get. to know you. They need to spend time being around you and treating you for your disability. They can not help you convince the Rating Board you are 100% Totally Disabled from PTSD if they do not see the evidence of the disability in you.
Once again, this is an important issue. You must help the Clinical Psychologists and the Psychiatrist become aware of the severity and chronicity of your PTSD. The best way to do this is to tell them how you feel or don’t feel about issues and situations. After you have been in the PCT Program two or three months you can speak with them about the fact that you have filed a claim for benefits for PTSD. You can ask them if they would be willing to help you with your claim by writing some letters to support you. They will understand and be willing to help because they are used to writing letters for Veterans doing just what you are doing.
Something you need to know about Clinical Psychologists and Psychiatrists. Although the Clinical Psychologists will be much more aware of your PTSD symptoms and the Psychiatrist will be the least aware, it is the letter from the Psychiatrist which is most influential at the Rating Board. In other words, a letter from the Clinical Psychologists could say you are 100% Totally Disabled and will never progress. A letter from the Psychiatrist could say you are doing OK and the Rating Board would take the letter from the Clinical Psychologists, trash it and use the letter from the Psychiatrist. Thus, you would receive ZERO disability. That is why it is very important to be certain the Clinical Psychologists and Psychiatrist both agree on your condition.
One reason the Psychiatrist may not see your PTSD condition as the Clinical Psychologists sees your condition is because you will be seen by a Clinical Psychologist twenty to forty times for every one time you will be seen by the Psychiatrist. The Team will usually meet once a week for discussion. You can request that the Clinical Psychologists speak with the Psychiatrist to convey to him/her their findings about the severity and chronicity of your PTSD symptoms.
When it is time for you to request the Clinical Psychologists and Psychiatrist to write letters on your behalf for your PTSD claim, first ask the Clinical Psychologists. Be certain to make the Clinical Psychologists aware that you need a letter which helps establish your PTSD as being Chronic and Sever. Tell them you will be using the letter to help support your claim for a 100% Total Disability Rating. Wait for their letter before you ask the Psychiatrist for a similar letter. Once you receive a letter from the Clinical Psychologists read it carefully. Look for words and sentences which establish PTSD Chronic and Sever.
Example letters from PCT Unit Clinical Psychologists and a Psychiatrist can be found in Chapter 23 "Example Letters". These will help you better understand what kind of information needs to be included to help your PTSD claim. Names, social security numbers, claim numbers and other information which must be kept private has been blacked out. Key comments, words and phrases will be outlined. The blocked areas are important for you to pay attention to. These are the types of phrases, words and sentences you will want in your letter.
Once you have received your letter from the Clinical Psychologists and you have read .it and agree with their findings, it is time to make an appointment to see the Psychiatrist. Explain to him/her you are preparing to submit evidence for your PTSD claim for a 100% Total Disability rating from the Rating Board. Tell the Psychiatrist the Clinical Psychologists have written a letter(s) which support your claim for 100% Total Disability. Take the letter(s) from the Clinical Psychologists to your appointment with the Psychiatrist and show the letter(s) to him/her.
After the Psychiatrist agrees to write a letter for you explain to him/her that you have already drafted a letter for his/her review about you and your PTSD condition. Explain you believe your drafted letter might be helpful for him/her in preparing a letter for you. You can explain that you understand he/she see’s many patients and it might be difficult for him/her to be able to remember specific pertinent information about you which may benefit your claim. Therefore, you drafted the letter to save him/her considerable research time. You are trying to help ease his/her burden, plus you will be getting exactly the correct information you need to help win your claim. An Example of a drafted letter for a Psychiatrist can be found in Chapter 23 "Example Letters”.