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Social Security Commissioner Acknowledges Flaws In SSI Program

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The head of the Social Security Administration is admitting that there are serious problems with a program his agency oversees that provides benefits to children with disabilities.

In an interview with The Boston Globe, Social Security Commissioner Michael Astrue said he wants Congress to approve a study of the children’s Supplemental Security Income, or SSI, program in an effort to identify flaws so that improvements can be made.

The comments come after an extensive Globe series last fall found that many poor families are putting their children on psychiatric medications, among other measures, in an effort to obtain as much as $700 per month in federal disability benefits for their children.

Astrue said that data from his agency does not suggest that using medication drastically alters a child’s chances of being approved for SSI, but acknowledged that even such a perception is problematic.

Moreover, the commissioner indicated that he believes there are likely many children who receive SSI who probably shouldn’t qualify, a situation which could merit changes to the way the program is administered, reports The Boston Globe. To read more click here.

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