So many concerns and questions continue to surface due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Although the world has seen progress as an increasing number of people receive vaccinations, a few matters continue to gain attention. For example, the number of people becoming infected with the virus continues to rise in certain areas.
Also, there is one matter often overlooked: the people who continue to experience long-term health issues months after getting the virus. The term for these people is “long-haulers,” and they remain ill with many complications ranging from depression, memory loss and fatigue to body pain and respiratory issues. The just have not fully recovered. While these symptoms linger, a question lingers, too: Do they qualify for disability benefits?
Many long-haulers include health care workers and even educators who have had consistent exposure to the virus in the workplace. For some reason, this group also may consist of predominantly of older citizens, women, and people with asthma. A study in the United Kingdom revealed that 10% of the people stricken with COVID-19 usually suffer prolonged symptoms.
Clearly, certain people are more susceptible to becoming long-haulers, and, clearly, they may have the inability to work. This is when the question of whether they qualify for Social Security disability (SSD) benefits comes into play. That answer is still not known. But, remember, that all workers must be unable to work for at least a year to qualify for SSD benefits.
People who suffer from prolonged COVID-19 symptoms, though, may have specific protections through the Americans with Disabilities Act.
With no definite decisions from the U.S. government and employers in place, it is up to you to make sure that the community is aware of this problem and that a solution would help many people having the same COVID-related experience.
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