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January 2014 Archives

29.5 percent of Georgia SSD beneficiaries have mental conditions

In 1984, Congress passed some changes to the Social Security disability program’s list of conditions that could potentially qualify sufferers for Social Security Disability Insurance or Supplemental Security Income benefits. This resulted in the addition of a variety of qualifying mental conditions, with their symptoms carefully weighted with medical and functional factors before claims were allowed.

SSA adds 25 conditions to the SSD Compassionate Allowances list

The Social Security Administration’s Compassionate Allowances program was created to expedite the approval process for Social Security disability benefits for people with the most serious diseases and medical conditions that invariably meet the SSA’s legal standards. So far, the program has fast-tracked nearly 200,000 applications for people with conditions such as cancer, immunological disorders and neurological disease.

NYC first responders indicted for SSDI fraud. How common is it?

Last week, prosecutors in New York announced the indictment of 106 people, including former members of the New York City fire department and the NYPD. According to the charges, between 1988 and the end of last year, the former police officers and firefighters allegedly conspired with facilitators to obtain Social Security Disability Insurance for pretended mental disabilities, including some claims for PTSD brought about by service during the 9/11 tragedy.

ACA takes step to end institution-like treatment for the disabled

Among the many changes brought about by the Affordable Care Act is one that may move forward some goals many people with disabilities have long considered crucial: greater dignity, privacy and independence. For states that currently have Medicaid waivers for home and community-based services, a provision of the ACA (sometimes called “Obamacare”) called the Community First Choice Option provides federal matching funds to make housing for people with disabilities much more amenable to full integration in society.

New technology brings touching within reach of amputees

Just about everyone who has seen the Star Wars movies remembers the epic scene in The Empire Strikes Back when Darth Vader cuts off the hand of Luke Skywalker. At the time, the following scene in which a bionic arm is attached to young Skywalker’s arm seemed like science fiction. After all, the technology seemed light years (no pun intended) beyond its time, including the possibility of an amputee having not only a replaced limb but the ability to touch as well. But science fiction has finally found its way into reality with promising results for amputees around the world.

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