In a joint effort between the Department of Defense and the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Integrated Disability Evaluation System was launched in 2007 to create an easier way for wounded service members to enroll for their veterans' benefits and start receiving payments shortly after returning to civilian life. According to the U.S. Army's benefits page, the system is supposed to make the "evaluation process faster and simpler for service members." But as hundreds, if not thousands, of service members across the nation are finding, this isn't always the case.
On average, the process is supposed to take 295 days from when a soldier is considered eligible for early medical retirement to the time the soldier starts receiving their veterans' benefits. But many soldiers are actually finding that the process is taking nearly 400 days, which forces them to continue actively serving despite the fact that they are medically unfit for duty.