Can a child receive disability benefits for asthma?

If your child has a severe case of asthma, he or she may quality for SSI disability. Asthma is a common respiratory disorder for children, and to ascertain the severity of your child's asthma Social Security uses the guidelines set forth by Congress in the blue book, a resource used by disability examiners (examiners make decisions on SSI and SSD claims) that is titled Disability Evaluation for Social Security.

Your child must have a diagnosis of asthma with a well-documented medical history that addresses treatment and response along with information about the severity of your child's asthma. If your child has asthma, they may be allowed for asthma if their pulmonary function levels are low (levels are specified by the handbook).

Additionally, if your child has asthma attacks in spite of medical treatment, which require your pediatrician to intervene an average of every two months, or six times per year (a hospital stay counts as two interventions) your child may be an allowance. Social Security looks at a twelve consecutive month evaluation period when making the medical determination for your child.

About the Author: Tim Moore is a former Social Security Disability Examiner in North Carolina, has been interviewed by the NY Times and the LA Times on the disability system, and is an Accredited Disability Representative (ADR) in North Carolina. For assistance on a disability application or Appeal in NC, click here.

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