People With “Long COVID” Struggle to Obtain Disability Benefits

More than two years into the COVID-19 pandemic, many survivors of the coronavirus have found themselves struggling with health problems that have persisted long after the disease itself. Referred to generally as “Long COVID,” this condition can have a major impact on people’s lives and their ability to work. However, people with Long COVID have struggled to obtain disability benefits, due in part to bureaucratic issues that have impeded many applicants for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits.

What is Long COVID?

Long COVID is the informal term used to refer to a set of symptoms that many people experience after surviving a coronavirus infection. This condition is estimated to affect between 500,000 to 2,000,000 people across the United States, with many victims suffering severe health problems that keep them from being able to work. It affects people of all ages, and while it is more common in people who suffered from severe COVID symptoms, even people who were initially asymptomatic have reported suffering from the condition.

What Are the Symptoms of Long COVID?

For the most part, the symptoms of Long COVID are similar to those of a COVID infection, involving symptoms such as coughing, fever, difficulty breathing, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fatigue, muscle aches, and loss of the ability to taste or smell. In addition, many victims of Long COVID report psychological and neurological problems, most notably including a “brain fog” that inhibits the ability to focus or concentrate on prolonged tasks. While some victims of the condition have since recovered, many still suffer a year or more after their original infection.

Why Are People With Long COVID Struggling to Obtain Disability?

One of the biggest hurdles in obtaining disability benefits with Long COVID is a lack of medical evidence for the condition. Even now, the exact cause of Long COVID is not well understood, and the large variance in the number of symptoms means that it can be difficult to diagnose. On top of that, the Social Security Administration generally requires people to be disabled for at least a year before applying for disability benefits, meaning many survivors do not yet qualify.

Can You Apply For SSDI/SSI With Long COVID?

If you have suffered from Long COVID symptoms for at least a year, you may be able to qualify for disability benefits. However, the process is long and complicated, and you need to make sure you have done everything possible to give yourself the best chances at success. That is why you should speak to a lawyer with experience handling Social Security disability claims, who can help you to get the benefits you deserve.

If you or a loved one need assistance applying for SSDI or SSI benefits, it is important that you seek the guidance of an experienced Social Security Disability benefits lawyer. The lawyers at Sullivan & Kehoe, LLP have over 50 years of combined experience between its attorneys and are available to you or your loved one in obtaining Social Security Disability or Supplemental Security Income benefits. To schedule a consultation with our New York Social Security Disability benefits lawyers, call (631) 823-7155.

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