Plan for your future
Long-term financial planning is important for everyone -- but it is essential if you are coping with the expense of a chronic illness, such as Parkinson's disease.
Develop a Financial Plan. Dealing with a chronic illness is unpredictable; there is no way to know how you will feel or what you will be able to do days, months, or years from now. For your own security you need to plan ahead. Assume that Parkinson's will lead to increasing disability. There are professional financial managers and lawyers that provide financial planning for people with chronic illnesses.
Employee Insurance. If you are insured, either through your employer or a retirement policy, read all of the policies, including disability policies, pertaining to chronic illness. If you do not understand your benefits, contact the personnel department or your financial planner. Be sure to find out if your insurance covers referral to a specialist in Parkinson's disease.
Private Insurance. If you are unemployed and you do not have coverage, you should look for the highest level of coverage that you can afford.
Medicare. If you are 65 or over, you will qualify for Medicare. You can supplement this insurance with a "Medigap" policy available through a private insurer. Visit the official Medicare site.
If you are disabled but too young to qualify for Social Security, you may be eligible to receive Social Security Disability.
Medicaid. If you cannot get insurance and your income is low, you may qualify for Medicaid, a government "safety net" program that pays for medical costs that exceed a person's ability to pay.
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