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Can I Get Disability?
Jul 6, 2004

1st.THANK YOU for being here!

I have been HIV+ for 4 years now and have had lot's of bumps in the road. I have learned that I have Hep C, polycystic kidney, scoliosis,

depression, et.etc.etc...

There are MANY day's I can't

seem to pull myself out of bed and go to work. I always feel like crap, nausea, fatigue,pain,and overall feeling like crap!

I have changed my HIV med's

many times and am afraid to change any more in fear of MORE resistance.

On to my question! Do you think I could get on disability? I have always been afraid to ask my Doc, in fear he will think I am lazy or trying to work the system for something???

My Vl=50, and cd4 is 430. My med's are Viread,Epivir,Reyataz,Norvir,Videz,Zerit, and in 4 day's I will add Peg-Intron w/Rebetol. I wish I knew what to do. I hate my feeling this way and I'm

very MISERABE and work.EVERY day I think of giving up and some how I am still here???

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!!!

THANK YOU,

RR

Response from Ms. Breuer

Qualifying for disability is a complicated question that I leave to people who work on disability qualification in AIDS service organizations and do that all day, every day. They're usually called benefits counselors. You'll get a far more helpful answer from one of them than from us, since none of us is a benefits counselor. But clearly you need to change something to escape from the spiral you're in. You don't mention whether you have private disability insurance or would need to apply for public benefits, but in either case, you need to know what your provider thinks, because what s/he writes on the application is going to carry a lot of weight.

This is not about laziness. This is about your quality of life, which is poor right now. The conversation with your doc should be about medical issues, not about moral values. I wish more folks had your work ethic, but please don't let it kill you! Disability status exists precisely to help people in your situation.

So: benefits counselor and doc. Two conversations. Please start today. Your quality of life is suffering, and I'm against that!



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