Questions to ask about disability if patient claims that they cannot work right now due to their health or are impaired from working a job that they would not be able to perform in the open competitive market.  (They are self-employed and only work when they can; their employer makes special concessions or accommodations for them, etc.)

 

When did you last work?
What type of work did you do?
What type of education have you had?
How old are you?

·         over 55 is the age when FSSA will factor ability to be retrained for work

·         age 20 to 45 – it is more difficult to prove that the pt is really disabled

What are your functioning limitations? What can you not do or have difficulty doing today that you had no trouble doing before your condition worsened?
Does someone help you with your activities of daily living? (bathing, dressing, grooming, walking, meal prep, shopping, laundry, handling personal business, making change at the grocery, paying bills, scheduling and keeping Dr. appointments, remembering to take medicines)
Do you use walker, cane, wheelchair?

 

If you suspect that it could be a mental impairment:

Do you have any learning disabilities or did you receive special education in school?
Do you have any difficulty reading or writing? (This is difficult for many to admit)
Can you make change at the grocery store?
Have you received services at a mental health facility?
What kind of medications are you taking?
Many patients have not been treated or diagnosed with depression but exhibit symptoms, so you can ask them if they feel depressed, anxious, heard voices, etc. This is especially a factor for the patients with addictions as a primary diagnosis.  The addiction has been self-medication for an underlying behavioral health issue.
The answers to the above help in determining if you think the person MAY be impaired from working for 12 months.  If you think they may, and they appear financially eligible, then a Medicaid for Disabled application is probably appropriate.