Waiver denial Q for RetNavyHM


10-Year Member
5-Year Member
Apr 4, 2007
Dear RetNavyHM,
I was directed here by a few people who advised me that you could give me invaluable information regarding my USNA waiver denial.
Just yesterday I found out online that my USNA waiver was denied. I am extremely upset and am willing to try everything and anything to get this overturned. This is exactly what my medical status says:

Agency: US Naval Academy
Current Medical Status ( as of 4/3/2007): Medical waiver denied

D004.00 - Orthodontic appliances
D155.71 - Myopia - Refractive error greater than - 6.00 diopters (sphere component only)
D257.70 - Unaided distant visual acuity worse than 20/40
D260.10 - Waiver Denied - USNA

Now I don't even know what I was denied for. I'm assuming it was for my eyes because my orthodontist wrote a letter saying it would be no problem for me to take my braces off it I went to the academy. I think it's because my eyes are so bad. I know you've answered this question a few times on this forum so I apologize I would just like to make sure I'm absoltely sure as to what to do. Please advise me. I think I'm supposed to send a letter to dodmerb asking them to review my case again. I don't have any new information though. I was thinking the best I could do would be to get a letter written by my eye doctor telling them that I am not at risk for serious eye problems and that my vision is 100% correctable to 20/20. Should I also send a letter to the academy expressing my deep wanting to attend USNA. I want to do as much as I can but I want to make sure I'm going the right thing before I do.

It really sucks also because my right eye is just -4.75 but my left is -6.00. I know -6.00 is the cutoff but does that mean you have to be less than 6.00 or you have to be 6.00 or less. Looking at that wording for D155.71 it seems like I shouldn't even have that considering I don't have a refractive error greater than 6.00. Wow I actually just realized something. The Eye doctor which dodmerb told me to go to told me that my personal eye doctor was wrong and that my eyes were worse then what he has said. So I went back to my doctor to get a new prescription and he told me that the other guy was wrong and that I'm really only -6.00. So now i'm seeing that the dodmerb doctor told usna I have worse eyes than my doctor thinks I do. This seems like a light at the end of the tunnel. Now i'm really thinking I should go to my doctor and have him write a letter explaining that I shouldn't have D155.71. Sorry for this confusion.

Thank you in advance for any information you can give me; I really appreciate it.

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You have all the information correct with how to go about getting a waiver denial overturned. There are a couple of other things I would do as well. Ask your optometrist for copies of the last 3 years of eye exams. If they show that your refraction has stayed fairly stable over the past couple of years, that will help as well. Also with the letter from your orthodontist, I would make sure that it states that your braces will be off prior to I-Day. Include a personal letter, submit it all to DoDMERB requesting that the waiver authority re-look at your file and hope for the best!
Thank you very much RetNavyHM. I looked at my files from the last three years and my refraction levels has stayed very stable.

September 04: Right-4.75 Left-5.75
June 05: Right-4.75 Left-6.00
January 07: Right-4.75 Left 6.00

Do you know how likely it is that Dodmerb would take the word/advice of my doctor over the other guy the sent me to? My eye doctor was actually a corpsman in the navy so I'm hoping that might tip the scales :thumb:
Correct me if I'm wrong, I'm going to send a cover letter stating I am making a rebuttal along with a note from me asking them to reopen my case and my wanting to attend USNA. Then I will have a letter from my doctor showing them my eyes should not be considered above -6.00 and that they have been stable the past 3-4 years. After that the proof I guess which would his records. Then hopefully the Naval Academy will grant me a waiver for just having unaided distant visual acuity worse than 20/40, correctable to 20/20. I'm sure in the letter from orthodontist that he said my braces would be taken off if I were to attend the Academy. I am praying this works. Thanks again

Also does it matter that I've actually been denied a waiver already? Will this rebuttal go to dodmerb then onto the academy waiver board again? So like if DoDMERB finds that I don't have D155.71 they will tell USNA right? And then USNA can decide on my other problems again?
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Since you are wavier denied, DoDMERB will not remove the disqualification. But if you wanted to get a new manifest refraction (I'm not telling you to do this, this is just advice), submit that with the last 3 years of refractions and a request to have your package re-looked at.

If you do decide to get a new refraction, make sure if you wear contacts that they have been out for 3 days for soft and 21 days for hard lenses, and you provide a statement saying that they were out for X number of days. Also, if you do decide to get a new manifest refraction, try to make the appointment early in the morning, and get a lot of rest the night before. No TV, video games, computer or long term reading. Basically go to bed early (that'll make your parents happy!).

Again, I'm not telling you to do this. This is just advice!
Right, but if DoDMERB won't remove the DQ what is the best that could happen to me? Will they still foward the paperwork to the USNA waiver commitee? Or am I just basically out of luck? I know just advice, but you thank you.
Since DoDMERB can not overturn a waiver denial, they will forward all the information to the waiver authority and let them know there is new information out there.

Then it is up to the waiver authority to change the decision if they wish.
So after I send in this new information within the next few days I should expect to see my application under review again on the DoDMERB website? Also do you have any idea how long this could take? I just spoke with my regional director and we went over my file and he assured me that as long as I can get this waiver I will be admitted to the academy.
When DoDMERB reposts the information your status will change to "pending waiver submission/review". Once that happens it can take up to 8 weeks for the waiver authority to review it. Standard blurb. Since your package was looked at once before it should not take as long. I would guess in less than 3 weeks, but thats just a guess.
Okay great more waiting haha. Thank you so much your information was extremely valuable. I'll be sure to let you know what ends up happening. You just made my anxiety levels drop tremendously :biggrin:
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I made an appointment to get my eyes looked at again this Monday and then I'll send those results out right away. Do you know why they ask you to take your contacts out for 3 days? Are your eyes better if you take the contacts out 10 minutes before the exam then if you took them out 3 days before.
Do you know why they ask you to take your contacts out for 3 days? Are your eyes better if you take the contacts out 10 minutes before the exam then if you took them out 3 days before.

Contact lenses tend to distort the cornea (the top layer of the eyeball) which in turn will cause the manifest refraction to be wrong. Most likely the results will be worse, and if they are not, there will be such a difference that the results will be called into question by DoDMERB and the waiver authority. In your case I would not want to have the results of a new manifest refraction called into question at this point.

Check out this post, http://www.serviceacademyforums.com/showpost.php?p=5301&postcount=6, it will explain everything that you should be telling your optometrist as well.
I took my contacts out for three days and my doctor got the same readings as he always has. -6.00 in the left eye and -4.75 in the right. I know the DQ can't be taken off because I already was denied a waiver so now I should write a letter to DoDMERB asking them to foward it to waiver board right? In the letter I should have my personal statement asking them to look at my case again and a statement from my doctor and his test results.

The personal statement will basically be my asking to look at my case again and see that I should be appointed to USNA since I received an LOA. I'm also going to put how my eyes have affected me and what I've done to correct it like you suggested with other waiver problems. Is there anything else I should put in there besides my true desire to attend USNA?

The letter from my doctor will basically explain the test we did again and also the fact that my refractive error from the past three years has been very steady and shows no signs of increasing.

I just want to make sure I do everything I can...sorry for the repetitive questions. If you had any other suggestions I'd gladly take them. Thanks again!
The only stupid questions are those that aren't asked.. You have everything correct. Make sure you submit all that information to DoDMERB and they will ensure that it all gets forwarded to the waiver authority. Make sure that you put copies of the last 3 years of eye exams into your packet and you should be good to go.