Prescription Assistance Programs
Lupus and other autoimmune diseases can be devastating, not only to one’s physical health, but to one’s financial health. For those with insurance the burden can be less but still costly, but for those without insurance, the cost of needed prescribed medications can simply be out of reach. Fortunately, there are prescription assistance programs to help those who are uninsured and we have done our best to vet them out for you.
Here are a few that we recommend:
- Get help finding low- or no-cost prescriptions through the Partnership for Prescription Assistance
- Here is a link to Medicine Coupons.net with fantastic coupons for medications of all types!
- For Oregonians, try this link to the Oregon Rx Card
- For more information on these links and other valuable resources, please check out our Resource Center!
Lupus and Social Security Disability Benefits
Ram Meyyappan, the senior editor and manager of Social Security Disability Help reached out to us at Kaleidoscope Fighting Lupus in order to provide information to the populations we serve. Social Security Disability Help is an informational resources on all things related to social security disability benefits. With more than 400 disabling conditions that qualify an individual, SSDH provides information on how to apply, as well as a forum where you can have your questions answered.
Following is the information that Ram sent us to share with you:
If you are living with lupus, your condition may prevent you from maintaining full-time work activity. The inability to maintain employment can lead to significant financial stress. Fortunately, in some cases, Social Security Disability benefits may be able to help alleviate some of the financial complications caused by this condition.
Meeting the Technical Requirements of Social Security Disability
The Social Security Administration (SSA) operates two separate disability programs including Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Each program has its own qualifying criteria.
To qualify for SSDI benefits, you must have earned enough work credits through previous work history. Taxpayers can earn up to four work credits each year. The number of work credits needed to qualify for SSDI benefits will depend on your age. In general you need to have worked for half the time since you turned 18.
SSI benefits do not require any work credits or work history. Instead, SSI is a needs-based program and eligibility is based on your household income. In order to qualify for SSI benefits, you cannot earn more than $710 per month as an individual or $1,060 per month as a couple. You must also not have more than $2,000 in household assets as an individual or $3,000 as a couple.
Meeting the Disabling Criteria for Social Security Disability Benefits
In addition to meeting the above-mentioned technical requirements of the disability programs, you must also prove to the SSA that you are disabled according to their guidelines in order to qualify for disability benefits. When applying for benefits, the SSA will compare your condition to a listing of conditions known as the Blue Book. Lupus is covered under Section 14.02 of the Blue Book which covers systemic lupus erythematosus. According to the Blue Book, in order to qualify for disability benefits with this condition you must be able to prove that:
- The condition involves two or more organs or body systems and that:
- One of the organs or body systems is involved to at least a moderate level of severity; and
- At least two of the constitutional symptoms or signs (severe fatigue, fever, malaise, or involuntary weight loss) are present.
- You suffer from repeated manifestations of SLE, with at least two of the constitutional symptoms or signs (severe fatigue, fever, malaise, or involuntary weight loss) and one of the following at the marked level:
- Limitation of activities of daily living.
- Limitation in maintaining social functioning.
- Limitation in completing tasks in a timely manner due to deficiencies in concentration, persistence, or pace.
When applying for Social Security Disability benefits due to a diagnosis of lupus, it is important that you provide the SSA with medical records that prove that you meet the above-mentioned criteria in order to qualify for benefits.
Applying for Benefits
You can either submit an application for disability online or at your local SSA office. Be sure to include the necessary medical and financial documents to prove your eligibility for benefits.
For more information on applying for disability with Lupus, please visit: http://www.disability-benefits-help.org/disabling-conditions/lupus-and-social-security-disability
We hope this has been helpful and given you some information and tools you may not have known existed! Please share this blog by clicking on the social media links below.
Sources: Ram Meyyappan, Social Security Disability Help
Author: Karrie Sundbom
All images unless otherwise noted are property of and were created by Kaleidoscope Fighting Lupus. To use one of these images, please contact us at [email protected] for written permission; image credit and link-back must be given to Kaleidoscope Fighting Lupus.
All resources provided by us are for informational purposes only and should be used as a guide or for supplemental information, not to replace the advice of a medical professional. The personal views expressed here do not necessarily encompass the views of the organization, but the information has been vetted as a relevant resource. We encourage you to be your strongest advocate and always contact your healthcare practitioner with any specific questions or concerns.