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Social Security to Provide Helpful Health Care Information to Over 3 Million Disability Applicants Each Year

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Thursday, March 11, 2010 Mark Lassiter, Press Officer
For Immediate Release 410-965-8904
  press.office@ssa.gov

SOCIAL SECURITY

News Release

Social Security to Provide Helpful Health Care Information to Over 3 Million Disability Applicants Each Year

Michael J. Astrue, Commissioner of Social Security, today announced the agency is providing helpful health care information and website links to the more than three million individuals who apply each year for Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) disability benefits. The website links take disability applicants to two U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) websites – www.healthfinder.gov where they will find information and tools to help them better understand and cope with their conditions; and www.healthfinder.gov/rxdrug where they may be able to get help paying for prescription drugs.

“This year over three million Americans will apply for disability benefits. Whether they meet the statutory test and qualify for benefits or not, almost all of them are facing difficult economic and medical challenges. One of the advantages of our fully electronic system is that our notices can provide applicants with valuable information provided by HHS that might help them make good choices faster,” Commissioner Astrue said. “Twenty five years ago, I had the experience of filing for disability benefits on behalf of my seriously ill father. It would have been a blessing to have had easy access to this kind of important information.”

The website at www.healthfinder.gov provides detailed information about specific diseases. For example, an applicant with breast cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, or other diseases can go to the site to gather information about diagnosis, symptoms, treatment, ongoing research, and local resources available to people with those diseases. The website at www.healthfinder.gov/rxdrug links people to the Partnership for Prescription Assistance, which directs people to information on reduced cost or free prescription drugs offered by drug companies, state and local governments, and local organizations.

The helpful health care links also are available on Social Security’s website at www.socialsecurity.gov/applyfordisability.

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