|Jack Nicholson in One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest|
A blogger writes about his experience when helping his severely depressed father apply for Social Security disability benefits. He was surprised to find that "We could actually get people on the phone when we called, and when we arrived, we didn't have to wait long to be set up with a caseworker, who was respectful, and very businesslike about it." The blogger was pleasantly surprised to find that the disability claim was quickly approved.
I'm happy for this blogger. I wish prompt approval was the norm for people suffering from severe depression but it isn't. At any given time I almost always have a client who Social Security disability claim has been denied even though is undergoing or has undergone Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) for profound depression. (I don't think that the blogger's father had ECT). You thought that ECT went away after One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest? You are younger and have never heard of ECT or One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest? Trust me. In extreme cases, doctors hook up electrodes to a person's head and run electric current through their brain in a desperate attempt to alleviate their depression. Sounds gruesome but fifty years ago it was a common treatment for many types of mental illness. Today it's still used but only for extreme cases of depression that don't respond to other treatments. It's now done under anesthesia. It's hardly a cure-all. I don't think I have to tell readers that there are potential side effects. Wouldn't you think that individuals who consent to go through this sort of thing have to be desperate for relief? Nevertheless, Social Security still denies their disability claims.