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Disability might result in eligibility under several programs

A recent study found that surgery patients covered by Medicaid may not fare as well as those who are privately insured. Medicaid surgical patients might require longer hospital stays or have more complications. 

However, an attorney that focuses on Social Security disability insurance benefits knows that one of the study’s findings is particularly revealing: Medicaid patients in the study often arrived at the hospital in poorer health. Specifically, many had conditions such as diabetes, lung disease or conditions that increased the risk of surgery. They were also twice as likely to experience fatal post-surgery complications.

According to the Social Security Administration’s listing of disabling conditions, diabetes and lung disease might potentially qualify for SSDI benefits. In the study, researchers may not have tabulated the number of Medicaid patients who were also receiving SSDI benefits. However, a severally impaired individual may be able to qualify under several different programs. That correlation provides additional context to the study.

Whether the study might return comparable results in a few years is a different question. Under the Affordable Care Act, millions of uninsured Americans may now qualify for Medicaid. That influx of new beneficiaries might substantially change the profile traditionally associated with an individual on Medicaid. 

Regardless of the type of insurance, an attorney that handles disability claims can work to provide comprehensive services to a disabled individual. Those with a work history might qualify for SSDI assistance. That eligibility might also extend to Medicare and Medicaid needs. Although each program might have its own requirements, an attorney can help applicants navigate the tricky procedures.

Source: The New York Times, “Poorer Health of Surgery Patients on Medicaid May Alter Law’s Bottom Line,” Robert Pear, May 17, 2014

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