Are You Not Working Due to Your Health?

Unfortunately, no one gets to decide when they come down with a mental or physical illness. The symptoms often begin at the most inopportune time, which makes paying bills and covering living expenses difficult. Savings accounts quickly drain. The bills pile up. And sometimes, people even lose their homes when they can't pay for them anymore. But that doesn't mean all hope is lost. By using the following tips, people can manage to survive through this difficult situation.

Start Making Calls

There is a multitude of agencies that assist people with groceries, rent, utilities, and clothing. The application process is fairly simple too. All a person has to do is provide proof of their income and residency in an area. And the best place to start finding agencies like this is the local community action or social services center. They can provide a list of all the options that are available based on someone's individual needs. It is best that a person who is struggling with an illness of any kind apply for everything that they can. They may not get approved for it all, but their chances of getting assistance will be increased. And the good news is that once one agency becomes aware of someone's situation, they can recommend others that will help too.

Apply for Social Security

Anyone who has a verifiable illness that is affecting their ability to earn an income can apply for disability through their local social security office. This program is different than the one that gives monthly checks to the elderly. Any person of any age can get it if they meet the requirements. This program helps provide a small amount of income to help cover living expenses. But it takes about two months to be approved for it though. So anyone who has a long-term illness or disease should apply for it as soon as possible.

Healthcare Options

The trouble with most types of health insurance is the monthly fees. They stay low as long as someone doesn't use it. But as soon as a person gets a diagnosis of a serious disease, the rates skyrocket. And sometimes, the insurance company completely drops the coverage because they don't want to pay for all the medical expenses. So other alternative options have to be found, such as Medicare or Medicaid. Many communities have free health clinics that can help too. They are based on a person's income, so most people who go there don't have to pay anything at all. Free clinics stay connected with local hospitals and doctors, so if a person needs more serious care, they can still get it. Prescriptions, dental work, and counseling are available through them too.

Tell Friends and Family

Getting through an illness is harder when there is no support system available to lean on. So even though it may be difficult to do, it is crucial that a person tells their close friends and family members that they need help. But before doing that, the person with the illness should sit down and make a list of all their concerns and needs. Then, start asking who can help with each task. Maybe, one person is too busy to help with transportation, but they have extra groceries that they can give. And another may be willing to help catch up the laundry or watch the kids during a doctor's appointment.

Be Prepare to Downsize

Most agencies try to keep a person in their own home for as long as they can. But if the house is large and expensive, then this isn't always possible. It is much easier to cover the expenses for a small apartment or house. So although it may be difficult to do, those with a long-term illness will probably have to move. And the best place to find an affordable place to live is through a local low-income housing complex. The apartments and houses are rented out on a sliding-scale fee. So those who have very little income can afford it.

So if you or someone that you know has just been diagnosed with a serious illness, don't panic. There is lots of help available for those who ask. And the hardest part is simply taking the first step.

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