USMA Medical Waiver Denied

Discussion in 'Military Academy - USMA' started by yankeefan1111, Feb 25, 2015.

  1. yankeefan1111

    yankeefan1111 Member

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    Hi everyone, this is going to be a long post. I have just been informed by my RD that my medical waiver for USMA has been denied. This is a unique case, so I was hoping to provide you guys with all the details, and see if there would be a best way to proceed. So here is my waiver story...

    I was born in 1996 in New York City. Before I was born, the docs did a number of tests to check for any genetic conditions that might exist, unfortunately, they found that I had the Genotype for a disease called Gaucher's type 1. This disease is pretty rare, only about 1 in 50,000 people in the general population get diagnosed. This is the most mild form of the mutation, and if I were to become symptomatic I would experience mild bone pain and a slightly enlarged spleen. The good news is that the is that I have never experienced any symptoms of the disease. Furthermore, only about 50% of individuals with the diagnosis become symptomatic later in life. The disease is highly treatable either via enzyme therapy or oral medications. I have followed up with a doctor every year regarding the condition just to be safe, and monitor for symptoms.

    So, last year I applied for ROTC and USMA. I didn't get into USMA but I was awarded a 4 year Army ROTC scholarship. I accepted the scholarship and the waiver was requested. I have been waiting about a year for a response. Based on what I've heard from Cadet Command, my waiver is currently in the office of the Surgeon General of the Army waiting review. In the meantime, I reapplied to USMA. Unlike last year, they put in for a waiver request. I just heard from my RD on the phone that it was denied. The premise of the denial is that even though I will probably make it through USMA asymptomatic, I wouldn't be granted a waiver to commission as an officer because of the possibility that I would become symptomatic then. I provided DODMERB with my entire medical history last year. This included a letter from my doctor describing my diagnosis, and that I have never had any symptoms of the disease.

    At this point I was wondering if there was anything I could do to possibly reverse the waiver decision. Do I call DODMERB, DODMERB Consultants, my RD, or just call it quits? If it seems impossible that my waiver decision for USMA would be reversed, I don't want to waste anyone's time. On the other hand, I have dreamt of going to USMA for a while, and gone through the trouble of going through the application process twice, and I would hate to just give up the fight.

    I appreciate anyone who has taken the time to read through this post, I know that this is a bizarre situation. If anyone had advice on approaching a possible waiver appeal, or any other advice regarding this process it would be much appreciated. Thanks in advance for your help, it is much appreciated.
     
  2. scoutpilot

    scoutpilot Member

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    Essentially, no. You can't force DoDMERB's hand.
     
  3. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    It's hard to argue against genetics and DoDMERB. I think it's pretty much call it quits with USMA. That being said, waivers are granted by the commissioning source. It may be possible to get a waiver through ROTC, not likely but possible. Keep in mind that they need to think to the future and the battlefield. Although you may be asymptomatic and have something treatable, it's probably not treatable on the battlefield as you will most likely be without your meds.
     
  4. yankeefan1111

    yankeefan1111 Member

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    Thanks for the post. I was also wondering if anyone knew how long the waiver process for AROTC could continue for. I am in a situation where if the Army wasn't going to pick up the bill for my tuition I would probably transfer to a state school. My understanding from speaking with Cadet Command is that my waiver is in Washington DC being reviewed by the Surgeon General of the Army. I'm sure he or she is a busy guy, but I have been in waiting for almost a year and am getting a little antsy. Thanks again for all of your guys help.
     
  5. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    Given the denial by USMA you might double-check with cadet command again and make sure the status hasn't changed as a result of the USMA denial. Just don't want you to make any assumptions.
     
  6. buff81

    buff81 Moderator

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    You can appeal a waiver denial but you would need some other evidence, information, test etc that is in your favor that DoDMERB doesnt already have.
    A waiver denial by USMA is not indicative of what Cadet Command will do with your waiver. IOW- a denial by West Point does not mean you will get a denial from Cadet Command.
     
  7. kp2001

    kp2001 USMMA Alumnus

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    True, but in the case of something like Gaucher's it's going to be an uphill battle. The big difference that may play in the OP's favor (just ever so slightly though) is that the Army has already spent at least some money on him. Sometimes that can make a difference.
     
  8. yankeefan1111

    yankeefan1111 Member

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    Now I have another question. I am currently on the Pre-med track. If possible, I would like to take advantage of the Health Programs scholarship. This is the program where the Army pays for med school, and you give back one year of service for every year of education. Is it likely that this program would have more lenient criteria than USMA or AROTC, or would I probably get the same decision? This question might be out of left field, but I was wondering if you guys had any insight. Thanks again.
     
  9. ca2midwestmom

    ca2midwestmom Member

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    Search USUHS in the DODMERB, USMA & ROTC forums and you will find this discussion.

    http://www.serviceacademyforums.com...f-asthma-treated-similarly.41154/#post-401385
     
  10. yankeefan1111

    yankeefan1111 Member

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    Thanks for the reply, I will keep that in mind as I hopefully move towards medical school. I am bummed that the waiver didn't work out for USMA, but I'll plan on keeping my head up and fighting the good fight. I'll keep everyone updated if I get any news. Also, if anyone else had any further waiver related advice I am all ears. Thanks again.
     

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