Long COVID Social Security Disability

Three years after making its way to the United States, Covid-19 is still having an impact on many Americans. Symptoms of long covid can be debilitating, and many are unable to work due to the strain it puts on the body. Because of this, some of these individuals may be eligible to receive disability payments from the Social Security Administration (SSA).

The Administration has recently released guidelines on the medical documentation needed to analyze claims of disability due to long covid. It should be noted that the SSA does not provide partial or short-term disability benefits. In order to be considered disabled, an adult must be “unable to do any substantial gainful work activity because of any medically determinable physical or mental impairment(s) that has lasted, or can be expected to last, for a continuous period of at least 12 months, or that is expected to result in death.”

If you or a loved one are looking to make a disability claim due to long covid, your medical providers will need to provide the SSA with detailed accounts of their findings regarding covid and long-covid symptoms and the impact on both physical and mental functioning. These findings may include physical and mental exams, bloods tests, and MRIs, as well as other medical exams. The provider should also include any prescribed treatments and their effects. 

Disability claims are evaluated by Disability Determination Services, which are state agencies. They use a team of medical professionals and disability examiners to “decide whether an individual is disabled under Social Security law. In evaluating disability for individuals with Long COVID, the team looks at all the available evidence, including the clinical course from the onset of the illness, and considers the impact of the illness on each affected body system.”

For more information, please consult this guide.