Hepatitis C & Social Security Disability Benefits

Written by jennifer allen
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Hepatitis C & Social Security Disability Benefits
The federal government grants monthly income to people who are disabled with Hepatitis C. (Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Ivana Jurcic)

What many people fail to realise is that Hepatitis C is a disabling disease. Hepatitis C begins as a virus that inflames the liver. It is commonly developed through drug use, blood transfusions, sexual contact and childbirth. Symptoms of Hepatitis C can make performing daily routines, as well as jobs, difficult. For this reason, those people diagnosed with the disease often apply for social security benefits.

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Effects on Job Performance

Many people infected with Hepatitis C are unable to work due to the symptoms of the disease. In later stages of the disease, the symptoms, such as fatigue, fever, nausea, poor appetite, muscle pain, joint pain and liver tenderness, dramatically effect the body. These symptoms can make it almost impossible to perform a job well.

Depending on how strenuous a job is, people diagnosed with Hepatitis C often have to quit their jobs or are taken out of work under the care of their doctors. Because Hepatitis C effects the ability of a person to perform his job, a person diagnosed with the disease can apply for social security benefits.

What Are Social Security Disability Benefits?

Social security disability benefits is monthly income granted by the federal government to those individuals that qualify. It is monthly income paid by the government to financially aid individuals who are not able to work. People with Hepatitis C often qualify for these benefits, if they meet other qualifications.

Qualifications

Social security offices will analyse qualifications to determine if someone with Hepatitis C qualifies for benefits. There are five primary qualifications. First, the agency will determine if the applicant is working. Second, the social security agency will analyse whether a medical condition is present that alters the ability for the applicant to perform his or her job. Third, Hepatitis C must be a qualifying disease for social security benefits, and it is. Fourth, the social security agency will determine if the applicant is able to do his or her work. If not, the agency will determine if the applicant is able to perform any form of work.

How to Apply

There are a variety of methods used to determine if someone qualifies for disability benefits due to being diagnosed with Hepatitis C. Commonly, someone can visit his or her local social security office and fill out an application. If someone needs to apply and can't visit an office, he or she can apply online or by phone (see Resources below).

How Much Are These Benefits?

Social security monthly disability benefits are based on the average lifetime earnings of the disabled individual. Because disability is more common than most people think, the social security office sends a Social Security Statement each year to everyone employed so they will know what their disability benefits would be if disabled.

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