Children suffering from asthma growth impairment may be eligible for Childhood SSI benefits. Asthma is a chronic lung disease that inflames and narrows the airways. Asthma causes recurring periods of wheezing (a whistling sound when you breathe), chest tightness, shortness of breath, and coughing. The coughing often occurs at night or early in the morning. Asthma affects people of all ages, but it most often starts during childhood.
Childhood SSI claims are evaluated differently than adult claims for Social Security Disability or SSI. The requirements are actually more stringent. The Social Security Administration determines whether the child has an impairment or combination of impairments that meets or medically equals the criteria of a listing, or that functionally equals the listings.
For asthma, the regulations require:
A. FEV1 equal to or less than the value specified in Table I of 103.02A:
B. Attacks, in spite of prescribed treatment and requiring physician intervention, occurring at least once every 2 months or at least six times a year. Each inpatient hospitalization for longer than 24 hours for control of asthma counts as two attacks, and an evaluation period of at least 12 consecutive months must be used to determine the frequency of attacks.
C. Persistent low-grade wheezing between acute attacks or absence of extended symptom-free periods requiring daytime and nocturnal use of sympathomimetic bronchodilators with one of the following:
1. Persistent prolonged expiration with radiographic or other appropriate imaging techniques evidence of pulmonary hyperinflation or peribronchial disease;
2. Short courses of corticosteroids that average more than 5 days per month for at least 3 months during a 12-month period;
D. Growth impairment as described under the criteria in 100.00.
If the Listing cannot be proven, the claim can still be won if the impairment(s) functionally equals the listings. One must assess the child’s functioning in terms of six domains: (1) acquiring and using information; (2) attending and completing tasks; (3) interacting and relating with others; (4) moving about and manipulating objects; (5) caring for yourself; and (6) health and physical well-being and determine if the child’s impairment(s) result in “marked” limitations in two domains of functioning or an “extreme” limitation in one domain.
If you need more information about a Social Security Disability/SSI, personal injury, EEOICPA, long or short-term disability, VA disability, Railroad Retirement Board disability, or a workers compensation matter, please contact the Law Offices of Tony Farmer and John Dreiser for a free case evaluation. We can be reached at (865) 584-1211 or (800) 806-4611 or through our website. Our office handles claims throughout East Tennessee.