In an effort to expedite appeal decision making, the Board of Veteran Appeals (BVA) has adjusted its services and processes. In fiscal 2019, the BVA has processed 11% more appeals and 38% more hearings vs. 2018. The changes which have been implemented on more recent appeal cases are the result of a congress-mandated appeals structure. Historically, appeal decisions averaged over 7 years. The changes introduce a 3-tier system aimed at improving efficiency and empowering decision making at various levels.