Allsup Observes National Influenza Vaccination Week Dec. 2-8

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Allsup emphasizes importance of flu vaccines for those with disabilities.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention considers those with asthma, diabetes, heart disease, chronic lung disease, HIV or AIDS, and cancer at high risk for developing flu-related complications.

Each year more than 200,000 people in the U.S. are hospitalized due to seasonal flu-related complications, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Allsup, a nationwide provider of Social Security Disability Insurance(SSDI) representation, and other organizations are observing Dec. 2-8 as National Influenza Vaccination Week.

With an average 5 to 20 percent of the U.S. population contracting the flu each year, the CDC strongly recommends that everyone over the age of 6 months get a yearly flu vaccine.

“This is especially true for individuals with disabilities who may have compromised immune systems or breathing problems,” said Tai Venuti, manager of Strategic Alliances at Allsup. “The CDC considers those with asthma, diabetes, heart disease, chronic lung disease, HIV or AIDS, and cancer at high risk for developing flu-related complications such as pneumonia, bronchitis, sinus infections and other infections. Medicare covers a vaccination once per flu season in the fall or winter.”

Chronic health conditions also can worsen due to the flu. For example, the CDC states the flu can trigger attacks in people with asthma, or individuals with chronic congestive heart failure could experience a decline in their condition. Caregivers or people who live with individuals with these conditions also are highly encouraged to get a flu shot. Find more information about precautions for people with a high risk of developing flu-related conditions at

Individuals with these high-risk conditions often may experience severe disability, and as a result may be eligible for Social Security Disability Insurance(SSDI). The Social Security Administration uses the following five-step process to determine if an individual qualifies for SSDI benefits:

1. Can the individual work according to the SSA definition? Earning more than $1,010 a month will disqualify a person from receiving Social Security disability benefits. In 2013, this amount increases to $1,040 per month.

2. Is the disability severe enough to significantly limit the ability to perform basic work activities? These activities include walking, standing, sitting, lifting, pushing, carrying or handling.

3. Does the disability meet or equal a medical listing? For example, if an individual meets or equals a medical listing for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), a chronic lung condition, that person would experience, in part, an irreversible loss of pulmonary function due to ventilatory impairment, gas exchange abnormalities or a combination of both. A thorough medical history, physical examination and chest X-ray or other appropriate imaging techniques are required to establish COPD.

4. Can the individual perform work done in the past despite the disability? Benefits are denied if the SSA concludes the person can do past work. If the person is unable, the process proceeds to the fifth and final step.

5. Can other work be performed? The SSA considers age, education, work experience and physical/mental condition when determining if other work can be performed. For this step, the SSA enlists medical-vocational rules, which vary according to age.

SSDI is a federally mandated disability insurance program overseen by the Social Security Administration, and it operates separately from the retirement and Supplemental Security Income programs. SSDI provides monthly benefits to individuals who are under full retirement age (age 65 or older) and who can no longer work because of a severe disability. Individuals and their employers pay for the federal insurance program through FICA taxes.

To determine if you are eligible for Social Security disability benefits, call the Allsup Disability Evaluation Center at (800) 678-3276 for a free SSDI eligibility evaluation.

Allsup is a nationwide provider of Social Security disability, veterans disability appeal, Medicare and Medicare Secondary Payer compliance services for individuals, employers and insurance carriers. Founded in 1984, Allsup employs more than 800 professionals who deliver specialized services supporting people with disabilities and seniors so they may lead lives that are as financially secure and as healthy as possible. The company is based in Belleville, Ill., near St. Louis. For more information, go to or visit Allsup on Facebook at

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Rebecca Ray
(800) 854-1418 65065
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Tai Venuti
(800) 854-1418 68573
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