Under the Affordable Care Act almost every American is required to have health insurance, or else face a tax penalty. Of course, there is a big difference between having health insurance and receiving healthcare – although you may not realize that by listening to some politicians, who seem to equate them as one and the same.
The fact is, receiving medical treatment is still expensive in this country, even for many people who have insurance. For those who have disabilities and require extensive medical treatment, these costs can be overwhelming. On top of that, people who are applying for Social Security disability benefits must often go to doctors in order to simply document their health conditions in order to show that they meet the Social Security Administration’s requirements. Since many such disabled people are unable to work to earn a living, they can quickly run into financial difficulty.
Under the ACA, those who are receiving SSD benefits while on Medicare are considered to have met the requirements for maintaining health insurance, and they will not have to pay the penalty for lacking health insurance. However, those who are still in the application stages may have to wait as long as 24 months before they begin receiving benefits. Fortunately, the Social Security Administration does offer some help with securing Medicaid for those who are in the disability benefits waiting period.
Social Security disability benefits can be an extremely important financial lifeline for those who are no longer able to participate in the workforce. Multiple doctor visits in order to document a disability may result in extra medical expenses, but the effort can be worth it in order to qualify for SSD benefits on an initial application.
Source: healthcare.gov, “Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) & Medicare coverage,” Accessed April 2, 2016