Tennesseans who receive cancer diagnoses may want to consider applying for SSDI to help them meet their financial needs and pay for their medical care while they are going through treatment. Some types of cancer may allow patients to receive expedited processing of their applications for disability. Others whose cancers are not listed in the Blue Book or who are in the earlier stages of the diseases may still qualify if their conditions meet the requirements for the medical vocational allowance program. Getting SSDI may help people pay for their basic living expenses. They may also qualify for Medicaid and Medicare to help pay for the high costs of cancer treatment and care.
Listed Cancers in the Blue Book
People who have been diagnosed with certain types of cancer may automatically qualify for disability benefits if they are otherwise eligible. There are a number of different types of aggressive cancers that are listed in the Social Security Administration’s Blue Book under section 13.0. People can talk to their cancer doctors to determine whether or not their cancers might automatically medically qualify them for disability benefits.
In addition to qualifying medically, people must also qualify financially. The Social Security Administration limits the amount of income that people can make. People must also have worked enough to earn sufficient work credits to qualify for SSDI.
Medical Vocational Allowances
Under the SSA’s medical vocational allowance program, it may be possible for people who have cancer to qualify for SSDI even if their cancers are not listed in the Blue Book. The SSA may grant a medical vocational allowance to someone whose cancer is expected to last at least 12 months and to prevent the person from returning to his or her job.
Why Applying For SSDI Is a Good Idea
Applying for SSDI following a cancer diagnosis is a good idea for a couple of reasons. Chemotherapy, radiation, and other types of cancer treatments may cause severe side effects that make it difficult for people to work. SSDI benefits may provide them with a financial lifeline while they are fighting their cancers. People who are approved for SSDI may also receive Medicare and Medicaid. Cancer treatments are prohibitively expensive, and insurance deductibles can quickly add up. Medicare and Medicaid might help patients to pay for their care so that they can get the treatment that they need.