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Receiving Social Security disability when diagnosed with cancer

Being diagnosed with cancer can be a difficult process for Kissimmee residents to come to grips with. In addition to the fear that comes with it, there are also financial and personal concerns. Fortunately, there is a possibility that those who are facing cancer will be able to receive Social Security disability benefits for illness. Before moving forward with an application, it is wise to understand the facts regarding what impairments are covered, what is considered when the cancer is evaluated, and what evidence is needed for the federal regulations to be met.

Social Security Disability covers most kinds of cancer except certain ones that are linked to HIV. Those suffering from HIV have other potential avenues to be awarded SSD benefits. When the cancer is evaluated, there will be many factors taken into consideration. They include the origin of the cancer; how extensive it is; the therapy that will be provided including the duration, frequency, and common response of the patients; and aftereffects of the therapy.

The Social Security Administration (SSA) requires evidence before awarding benefits. There must be medical evidence presented that will provide specifics as to the type of cancer it is, its extent, and where the primary, recurrent, or metastatic lesion is located on the body. If it is not possible to identify the primary site, then it can be classified as "primary site unknown." When the patient has to undergo an operation or other medical procedure - including a biopsy or aspiration with a needle - the SSA will need an operative note and a pathology report. If these cannot be provided, then medical reports or a hospitalization summary are sufficient. Details regarding what was found must be included.

It is possible that the SSA will need evidence about the cancer recurring, its persistence or its progression. The patient response to the therapy and any residual effects must also be given to the SSA.

Those with cancer might not be aware that they could be eligible for SSD benefits. Moving forward with a claim as quickly as possible is important to make certain that the benefits are awarded in a timely fashion. Speaking to an attorney is important in both understanding how the process works and applying for benefits.

Source: socialsecurity.gov, "13.00 Cancer - Adult," accessed on Sept. 28, 2015

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