What is happening with the Social Security Diabetes listing?

When I first started my blog in March of 2010 the first topic I dealt with was Diabetes.

The Social Security Administration (‘SSA”) published new proposed listings at the end of 2009 with dramatic and “not good” changes to the listings for diabetes.  You may recall that SSA was planning to eliminate a specific listing all together and create only “reference” listings.  Essentially, the agency was saying, then, that diabetes was so well under control in this country that it didn’t deserve to be listed in the list of “per se” disabling conditions.  Incredible.

Some of the proposed changes were pretty good.

SSA did recognize that children at a certain age are disabled with diabetes since the requirement to take and monitor insulin is beyond their abilities as children.

But for the most part, the new proposed listings are a step backwards for diabetic claimants and reflect a level of understanding about the disease that is inconsistent with reality.

The current listings were supposed to expire this summer so one wondered if these new listings would become final.

Thankfully, there were many thoughtful comments sent to SSA by important advocates of disabled diabetics, like the American Diabetes Association (ADA), and the National Organization of Social Security Claimant Representatives (NOSSCR), (and me), etc.   Everyone had the same message (pretty much).

  • the data shows that diabetes is on the rise in this country
  • there still is no cure for diabetes, despite new medications on the market
  • diabetes is very difficult to control and treat, even under optimal care
  • most diabetes don’t get optimal care
  • optimal care (for many diabetics) would impact work-activity
  • many diabetics make incredible efforts to stay on the job, despite the invasive nature of their disease (and don’t want to be on disability)
  • not everyone with diabetes is disabled but those who are deserve a fair evaluation of their disability claim

So where are we now with the Diabetes listing?

We are were we were before.  The current listing was extended until July 2, 2012.  My insider info tells me that the agency is working on finalizing the Endocrine revised listing.  There is no indication of whether they will make significant changes.  Lets hope they get it right!

If you need more help with Social Security Disability, Call toll-free at 1-800-481-0302.  You can also visit our website.