Monday, October 28, 2013
Gill v. Shinseki
Gill v. Shinseki, docket no. 12-3428 (Vet.App. Oct. 28, 2013)
The diagnostic code (DC) for hypertension requires multiple blood pressure readings over multiple days to confirm the diagnosis of the condition. The CAVC held that this requirement only applies to the confirmation of the diagnosis – and not to the assignment of a disability rating.
In this case, the veteran was awarded service connection for hypertension, rated 10% disabling. He appealed the rating assigned, arguing that the medical evidence of record was inadequate because it did not contain reports of two or more blood pressure readings on at least three different days, as required by 38 C.F.R. § 4.104, DC 7101 Note 1. The Court paid substantial deference to the Secretary’s interpretation of VA’s regulation and held that the regulation’s requirement of multiple blood pressure readings over multiple days only applies to the initial confirmation of the diagnosis of hypertension.