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Society Endorses Stop the Wait Act

February 3, 2022

On February 3, Senator Bob Casey (D-PA), and Representatives Lloyd Doggett (D-TX-35) and Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA-01) introduced the “Stop the Wait Act.” Currently, after waiting months to qualify for disability benefits through Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), individuals with disabilities are forced to wait 5 months to get a disability check and another 24 months for those without health coverage to qualify for Medicare. This bill would eliminate these dangerous, mandated waiting periods imposed on individuals with disabilities that harm their health by delaying critical health care. 

It’s hard enough for someone with MS to have to leave their job and navigate the Social Security Disability process. The additional financial burden of waiting for the initial payment, followed by a two year wait to get the health coverage and care they need creates stress and anxiety on top of managing an already complex condition,” said Bari Talente, Executive Vice President of Advocacy and Healthcare Access at the National MS Society.  

We believe the Stop the Wait Act can be a difference maker for people and will help reduce health disparities across the country and improve access to healthcare for the people that need it most. Thank you to Senator Casey (D-PA) and Representatives Doggett (D-TX-35) and Fitzpatrick (R-PA-01) for introducing this important legislation.”

The bill introduction coincides with a House of Representatives’ Ways and Means Committee Hearing “Bridging Health Equity Gaps For People with Disabilities and Chronic Conditions.” The hearing will be webcast and archived here.

About Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis is an unpredictable disease of the central nervous system. Currently there is no cure. Symptoms vary from person to person and may include disabling fatigue, mobility challenges, cognitive changes, and vision issues. An estimated 1 million people live with MS in the United States. Early diagnosis and treatment are critical to minimize disability. Significant progress is being made to achieve a world free of MS.

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© 2022 The National Multiple Sclerosis Society is a tax exempt 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. Its Identification Number (EIN) is 13-5661935.