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Q: Several years ago, I applied for hearing aids at the VA clinic in Peoria but was denied. The explanation given at the time was that I did not have a service-connected disability compensation award for damage to my hearing. Has this changed? I have a VA medical benefits card and regularly see my VA primary doctor. 

A: The Veterans Service Officers (VSO) in Central Illinois met monthly with the director of the Illiana VA Medical System. Hearing loss and tinnitus (ringing in the ears) is the most claimed service-connected disability. The VA no longer requires that the VA primary provider doctor make a referral. The veteran can contact Audiology directly and establish an appointment. In addition, the “service-connected” hearing requirement is no longer valid. 

Event

The Illinois Department of Veteran Affairs in partnership with Springfield Elks Lodge 158 and Illinois World War II Memorial Committee will present the Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day Ceremony at 11 a.m. Dec. 7 at the Elks lodge, 409 E. Lake Shore Drive, Springfield. All veterans are invited.

Special opportunity

The Prairie Aviation Museum is offering a one-time 50 percent savings on annual dues. The regular $30 annual dues are reduced to $15 for first-year new members until Nov. 10, 2018.

All veterans on active duty, retired or honorably discharged are eligible. Call 309-663-7832 or stop by the museum, 2929 E. Empire St., Bloomington. The museum is open from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and noon to 4 p.m. Sunday.

NEW

The VA offers a Living Well workshop and study at the Peoria Clinic beginning Jan. 8. The program is for people with ongoing health conditions such as diabetes, asthma, emphysema, heart conditions, high blood pressure, MS, etc.

The six-week workshop consists of a weekly 2½-hour meeting at the Bob Michel VA Clinic, 7717 N. Orange Prairie Road. Call Latisha Marks at 309-589-6800, Ext. 47392, or the clerks at Ext. 47339 or Ext. 47343.

THANK YOU!

The veterans who attended the Veterans Day ceremony in downtown Bloomington give a resounding “thank you” to the crocheting and knitting group that handed out free hand-made winter scarves to the veterans.

The scarves will be appreciated with fond memories for many years to come.

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Veterans Corner publishes Monday. It is written by the McLean County Veterans Assistance Commission, 200 W. Front St., Bloomington, IL 61701; call 309-888-5140.

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