The Social Security Administration's Compassionate Allowances (CAL) initiative speeds up the application process for those deemed to have the most serious medical conditions. Many Pennsylvania residents could receive a decision in just days regarding the receipt of SSDI or SSI benefits if they suffer from one of the numerous conditions approved by the SSA. Benefits gained through CAL are not more than would be received without the program.
However, the ability to receive benefits more quickly could be invaluable to those receiving them. Some medical conditions are obviously going to meet the application requirements, and the SSA recognizes this fact. Recently, the SSA added 25 more medical conditions that qualify individuals for CAL, bringing the total number of eligible conditions to 225.
They encompass a variety of medical conditions. Cancer, immune disorders and neurological disorders are included, among many others. The disorders listed are chosen through a process involving numerous sources of information, such as the National Institutes of Health, public outreach hearings and a council of scientific and medical experts.
Since the initiative began, nearly 200,000 people began receiving payments quickly for their medical conditions. The application process is no different for Pennsylvania residents with CAL conditions than for anyone else. Those applications are flagged for the faster processing initiative. Even for applicants with a CAL medical condition, the process for applying for SSDI or SSI benefits can be confusing, frustrating and sometimes lengthy. A working knowledge of the laws, regulations and forms can be useful in getting benefits as quickly and painlessly as possible.
Source: seniorjournal.com, New Compassionate Allowance Conditions Added by Social Security for SSI, SSDI Programs, No author, Jan. 16, 2014