Posted by Bob (184.108.40.206) on August 18, 2000 at 10:50:31:
Yesterday I received word that my SS Disability benefits claim has been approved! Much to my suprise I received approval on my first attempt. No appeals or trips to court. What a relief.
For those interested in filing, I think what helped mine get through on the first attempt ( other than extremely strong medical documentation supporting my claim ) would be the fact that from the start I contacted my Congressman's office and let them know all about Clusters. I included a great deal of info and postings from this site. The local office manager took a real interest in my case after reading some of the horror stories I included and stayed right on top of my claim as it moved through the system. She contacted me at least every other week and let me know what the status of the claim was and what people she had spoken with.
Without such involvement by her I am sure that my benefits would have been denied until I finished jumping through all of the systems hoops. I was pleasantly suprised to find a government employee willing to go above and beyond the call of duty and actually take a personal interest in something which so terribly effects the life of one of their constituants.
I STRONGLY recommend contacting your national-level elected officials if you are begining to file a claim or already have a claim going through the system. Hopefully you will find a local office manager as dedicated and compassionate as the one I got. Involving your elected officials and providing them with info from this site also helps to promote more knowledge and understanding of this disease. The more that is known about Clusters, the better it is for all of us!
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