Government assistance for individuals with spinal cord injury is available through local, state, and federal programs. Resources include information on how to apply for disability benefits through programs like Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Learn about Spinal Cord Injury Waivers and eligibility to receive health care assistance at home or in the community. Support services can range from locating and paying for attendant care and personal assistance, assistive technology, consumable medical supplies, emergency alert response system installation, environmental accessibility adaptations, personal counseling, rehabilitation engineering evaluation, transportation services, and transition case management.
Other government programs support continuation of education and training, employment, family and caregiver support, housing needs and transportation. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs supports VA specialty centers for veterans with spinal cord injuries that provide access to medical and mental health, and social services.
Sponsored by the US Department of Education’s National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR), AbleData provides an extensive list of assistive devices. Product listings contain a short description and information on price, manufacturer and where to find it. This resource can assist you in learning about new developments in assistive technology and do-it-yourself ideas.
This consumer education sheet summarizes key points of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). This legislation made it a violation of federal law to discriminate against people with disabilities, just as civil rights laws protect people against discrimination on the basis of race, gender, national origin, and religion. The ADA is divided into four main sections, called “Titles”: 1. Employment, 2. State & Local Government, Transportation, and Public Service, 3. Public Accommodations, and 4. Telecommunications. Knowing your rights in each of these four areas can assist you in reentering the job market and pursing an active lifestyle. Additional information on the ADA can be located at: www.ada.gov.
The VA’s Spinal Cord Injury & Disorders System of Care provides a coordinated life-long continuum of services for eligible veterans with spinal cord injury. The system is designed around 24 hub’s across the nation. Each hub runs specialty centers comprised of highly trained providers including doctors, nurses, social workers, therapists, psychologists, and other professions. All professionals are uniquely equipped to support and treat people with spinal cord injury or disorder.
Managed by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP), this website is dedicated to providing in-depth online access to disability-related information. There are extensive resources on this site, including details on how to apply for disability benefits, find a federal government job, and other resources on disability laws, services, education, and healthcare.
GirlsHealth.gov was created in 2002 by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Office on Women’s Health (OWH) to help girls (ages 10 to 16) learn about health, growing up, and issues they may face. GirlsHealth.gov promotes healthy and positive behaviors in girls, giving them reliable and useful health information in a fun, easy-to-understand way. The website also provides information on Illness & Disability to help teach girls with disabilities, family members, and friends about healthy living.
Created through a partnership of federal agencies, this website is an excellent tool for finding and accessing the government programs designed to help you. The website offers the option to search for benefits according to category, state, or federal agency. Select Benefits at the top and decide how you would like to search for available benefits from the options under the tab. A good way to start is by selecting Start Benefit Finder to help you decide which benefits to look for.
HealthFinder.gov has resources on a wide range of health topics selected from over 1,600 government and non-profit organizations. This government website is designed to help you and those you care about stay healthy. Health Topics A to Z provides information on health conditions and diseases, nutrition and physical activity, doctor visits, everyday healthy living, pregnancy and parenting.
Provided by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy, JAN is a service intended to help employees, job seekers, entrepreneurs, and employers create a more accessible environment by providing information about job accommodations, the Americans with Disability Act (ADA), related legislation, and self-employment and entrepreneurship options for people with disabilities. Assistance is available over the phone or online. JAN also provides consulting services to decide the best course of action in making a business accessible as well as ideas for accommodating disabilities in the work place.
Developed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, this website offers extensive information and resources on long-term-care options. There is basic information about services, cost and planning as well as advice on securing long-term care for your loved one. These pages are also full of useful articles and tools, such as the Long-Term Care Savings Calculator. Scroll down to Find Services for additional resources that can be search nationally by state.
MakeTheConnection.net is an online resource designed to connect Veterans, their family members and friends, and other supporters with information, resources, and solutions to issues affecting their lives. Search their extensive video library to hear stories of strength and recovery. Explore information about signs, symptoms, and conditions that are related to mental health and well-being.
This website describes the services provided by Medicare, which offers insurance for people over the age of 65 or individuals under 65 with certain disabilities. On the home page under Forms, Help, & Resources, you’ll find information on health & drug plans, links that offer comparisons of hospitals, nursing homes and home health care agencies, and access to tools that help you find suppliers of medical equipment & supplies, Medicare forms, and replacement or correction of your Medicare card.
My HealtheVet was designed to help Veterans manage their healthcare needs. Veterans can refill VA prescriptions, keep track of their VA medical appointments and access their personal health records. There are also useful tools and resources designed to enrich each Veteran’s treatment experience and help them make informed decisions.
Appointed by the President of the United States, this council exists to advocate for disability rights and legislation. This website keeps you informed of programs designed to foster a more accessible society. Here you’ll find reports and newsletters about ongoing research, new legislative initiatives as well as meetings and events dedicated to creating national policies on disability.
OSERS is part of the U.S. Department of Education committed to improving opportunities in education and employment for people with disabilities by supporting programs that facilitate equal access to disabled individuals. Here you’ll find research, policies and programs dedicated to this initiative. The website offers detailed information on understanding and implementing important legislation as well as publications and tools for making education and employment more accessible.Within the index in the center of the home page, select Reports & Resources. This page offers publications and fact sheets about employment and educational opportunities, and disability rights.
The Office of Warrior Care Policy aims to connect Wounded Warriors, Service Members, Veterans, their families and caregivers with those who support them. It provides access to services and resources at the national, state and local levels to support recovery, rehabilitation and community reintegration. Visitors can find information on a variety of topics including benefits & compensation, education & training, employment, family & caregiver support, health, homeless assistance, housing, transportation & travel, volunteer opportunities and other services & resources. For help on how to find resources on the site, visit the How to Use this Site section of the NRD.
The PVA’s mission is to improve the quality of life of its members by advocating for improved health care, research, education and awareness of disability rights and programs for veterans. The website focuses primarily on injured veterans; however, the information on disability rights and sports and recreation applies to veterans and non-veterans alike.
This website covers Social Security issues specific to disabled individuals. Here you can get information on applying for benefits along with extensive lists of links to pages that answer questions about how Social security works and how it applies to your situation.
This booklet, from the Social Security Administration, is for the parents, caregivers, or representatives of children younger than age 18 who have disabilities that might make them eligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments. It is also for adults who became disabled in childhood (prior to 22), and who might be entitled to Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits. (We call this SSDI benefits a “child’s” benefit because it’s paid on a parent’s Social Security earnings record.) This booklet will help you decide if your child, or a child you know, might b eligible for SSI or Social Security.
Ticket to Work connects individuals with disabilities who receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and/or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits with free employment services. The program provides information on preparing for work, and finding and managing a job. Participants receive services such as career counseling, vocational rehabilitation, and job placement and training from authorized Ticket to Work service providers, such as employment networks or state vocational rehabilitation agencies.
The Department of Veterans Affairs has two benefit programs for caregivers: The Program of General Caregiver Support Services (eligible Veterans all eras) and the Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers (eligible post-9/11 Veterans). Each VA Medical Center has a Caregiver Support Coordinator available to assist with enrolling in these programs. For help, contact your local Caregiver Support Coordinator using the Caregiver Support Coordinator search tool, or call the VA Caregiver Support Line at 1-855-260-3274 (toll free 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET).
This consumer education article details the requirements for how much you can work and still maintain SSDI (Social Security Disability Income) benefits. The article also provides additional consumer education sheets on working and eligibility for Social Security Disability.
The Wounded Warrior Project (WWP) began when several veterans and friends, moved by stories of the first wounded service members returning home from Afghanistan and Iraq, took action to help others in need. What started as a program to provide comfort items to wounded service members has grown into a complete rehabilitative effort to assist warriors as they recover and transition back to civilian life. If you are a veteran injured after 9/11/01, select Programs. Here you can learn about WWP’s programs, which are uniquely structured and designed to nurture the mind and body, and encourage economic empowerment and engagement.