Social Security disability benefits may be available to those with liver disease. If your illness is listed in the Social Security Blue Book, you can be qualified for disability benefits if you have autoimmune hepatitis, cirrhosis, or another type of chronic liver disease.
The Costs of Acute Liver Disease
Health care costs make up the majority of life with chronic illness, but the economic and other total costs of liver disease go far beyond mere costs.
Absenteeism from work increases as the sickness worsens, which might lead to a decrease in income. A person's personal life may suffer as a result of ongoing medical issues, reoccurring symptoms, and medication side effects.
Depending on the kind and stage of the liver disease, medical expenses vary significantly.
For instance, while treating hepatitis, certain drugs are recommended on an as-needed basis and others are used as part of a maintenance regimen.
Hospital bills, diagnostic procedures, and regular laboratory testing can be expensive for chronic liver diseases such cirrhosis and end-stage liver disease. Regarding medical expenses, the actual cost depends on the type and stage of the liver disease. According to Healthcare. gov, the average three-day hospital stay in a US hospital is about $ 30,000.
Several studies estimate the burden of chronic liver disease in the United States to be in the range of $2.5 billion, with the indirect cost of $10.6 billion. A research found that patients in California with end-stage or severe chronic liver disease spend almost $5,000 per month on medical care. Expenditures can, of course, vary from location to location, but national average costs are considerable.
What happens in Liver Failure and SSDI?
The cost soars when liver disease develops to liver failure and transplants are required; according to the National Transplant Foundation, the first year of follow-up after a liver transplant averages $575,000.
You should prepare for continuous medical expenses and other costs whether you have Hep-C, cirrhosis, or another type of liver disease.
Benefits from social security disability insurance might offer a steady income to assist in overcoming these financial difficulties. Receivers with impairments frequently have access to Medicaid and/or Medicaid eligibility. You won't have to stress about paying for doctor visits, prescriptions, or any other medical expenses as a result.
Medical Qualifications Required to Win Disability Benefits
The SSA Blue Book list is typically consulted by liver disease applicants who seek to win SSDI benefits.
The Blue Book gives a list of typical impairments that is utilized by both physicians and disability examiners. The guidebook also outlines the kind of medical documentation needed to demonstrate the severity of your ailment, although these specifics might be hard to comprehend without a doctor's guidance.
Using the Blue Book to analyze your liver symptoms, your doctor can advise you on your eligibility. It is also preferable to get your doctor on board before applying for benefits since you will need to collaborate with them when the SSA makes demands for medical documents and other information during the disability verification process. If you have a particular form of liver illnesses, listed in Section [5.00] of the Blue Book:
- - You may meet or match the listing if your liver condition results in severe weight loss but does not fulfil the requirements of another classification [5.08]
- - Listing includes treatment for chronic liver diseases such cirrhosis, hepatitis, and others [5.05]
- - You may be eligible for benefits if you've undergone a liver transplant, under Blue Book listing [5.09]
In some circumstances, such as when kidney issues result in difficulties with other body systems, liver illness is a secondary condition. The SSA will evaluate your general health and examine several entries in the Blue Book when you have additional medical conditions to decide how or whether you qualify under a stated condition.
**Note that applicants with highest chance of winning SSDI for liver disease may include patients with acute fulminant hepatitis, malignant liver disease, metabolic liver disease, progressive liver failure, and life-threatening liver disease complications (viral, drug-induced, or toxin-induced). After a year has passed since the transplant, the SSA regards the patient as physically disabled and hence automatically qualifiable for benefits. Next, the disability examiner (DE) determines the degree of residual handicap by taking into account the necessity for post-transplant antiviral medication, the frequency and intensity of rejection, co-morbid problems, and therapeutic side effects.
The entire Blue Book is accessible online, and your doctor is able to do an in-depth analysis to determine which listing matches your liver disease symptoms best.
What if your Symptoms are not included in the Blue Book?
You can start getting ready for the Residual Functional Capacity form, RFC in advance if you think you won't be able to fulfil a disability listing based on advice from your doctor, a Social Security representative, or an attorney. You'll need to provide information on the exact constraints you encounter and how your liver condition affects your regular activities.
In this kind of disability evaluation, a complete report from your doctor is quite beneficial. Your doctor should describe your condition's diagnosis, course, and prognosis in the report.
He or she should also describe your exact symptoms, how frequently you encounter them, and how they impact your capacity to function at work and in daily life.
For instance, your liver illness may result in persistent nausea that is unaffected by medicine. Your doctor may note:
- - The severity of your nausea,
- - How frequently it affects you,
- - How long a typical episode lasts, as well as,
- - Any therapies that have been tried and failed.
These types of details help disability claim examiners understand the impact of your illness on your employment aptitude. Education, vocational training, and vocational skills also affect the types of jobs that qualify, and the SSA considers these to be part of the RFC as well.
It also takes into account age and the possibility of learning new skills and changing careers.
If the SSA determines through the RFC that you cannot work in another qualified job, you are considered medically qualified. If the disability is denied but you did not provide the RFC in your first application, you will need to add the RFC to your appeal.
How to Apply for SSDI Benefits for Chronic Liver Disease?
A complete and comprehensive disability application is required. All applications must be completed completely and require extensive medical documentation to support the claim. Although the SSA can see years of records, current medical records are also essential to approval decisions.
The specific documentation you need to provide to the SSA depends on the episode or symptoms of the most serious liver disease you are experiencing. However, medical evidence should usually include the following in the claim of liver disease:
- - ER and hospitalization records (if any)
- - Liver value lab results
- - Surgical notes and biopsy results
- - Imaging results, like MRIs with contrast
Qualifying for disability benefits is a complicated and tiresome process. It should not be left to non-professionals who don't know their way around the disability procedure, blue book, etc. Hiring expert disability attorneys can save you both lost time and money, which is crucial to start and win early ssdi benefits for your liver disease. For more information, you can seek legal advice from our expert disability attorneys at Law Office of Irene Ruzin.