Cerebral Palsy Treatment and Disability Benefits in Oregon

Do you have a child with cerebral palsy? You may wonder what treatments he or she requires to stay happy and healthy throughout life. You may also wonder how you can afford these treatments - and you are not alone. Many Oregon families struggle to ensure they are making the most well-informed decisions for their children's cerebral palsy treatment plans. We have compiled a selection of resources to help you navigate your child's healthcare options.

We will discuss what cerebral palsy is and the various symptoms and treatment options associated with the condition. Next, we will list some Oregon pediatric hospitals and treatment centers that can provide cerebral palsy care. Finally, we will conclude by discussing what Social Security Benefits are available to Oregon families and how to apply for them.

What is Cerebral Palsy?

Cerebral palsy is a lifelong neurological condition caused by brain trauma during pregnancy, in infancy, or during early childhood. While no cure for cerebral palsy exists, its symptoms do not get worse over time. People with cerebral palsy will need to seek treatment to relieve their symptoms throughout their lives.

Symptoms of cerebral palsy can be mild to severe. Most people with cerebral palsy will experience issues with muscle tone, movement, and motor skills. More severe cases may develop blindness, deafness, feeding issues, and speech problems. Many children with cerebral palsy require mobility devices, such as wheelchairs or leg braces.

Doctors treat cerebral palsy to alleviate symptoms, not to cure the condition. Depending on your child's experiences, the doctor may prescribe treatments such as medication and corrective surgeries. You may need to hire a live-in caregiver for more severe cases. In addition, your child may need to attend therapy appointments for movement, speech, learning, and other impairments.

Where to Seek Treatment for Cerebral Palsy

Throughout Oregon, you can find several hospitals and treatment centers for long-term cerebral palsy care. These facilities offer a high standard of treatment and personalized care plans for your child.

Providence Children's Development Institute
Various locations in Portland and Newberg

This program offers pediatric services for cerebral palsy diagnosis, evaluation, and treatment. Providence Children's Institute offers multiple services for neurological conditions such as cerebral palsy, including rehabilitation, corrective surgeries, and medications.

Oregon Health & Science University Hospital
Various locations in Portland and Beaverton

This University Hospital offers rehabilitation services for adults with cerebral palsy. They offer physical therapy, speech therapy, and occupational therapy. In addition, therapists teach crucial skills such as pain management and adult independence.

United Cerebral Palsy of Oregon
305 NE 102nd Avenue, Suite 100
Portland, OR 97220
(503) 777-4166

This organization supports people who have cerebral palsy and other developmental disabilities. UCP Oregon offers brokerage services for adults, supported living and employment, family support, and activities and training for children.

Social Security Benefits for Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral palsy treatment costs can cause a significant financial burden to families over time. The Center for Disease Control estimates that lifetime treatment costs for a child with cerebral palsy can total over $900,000 - and these costs increase based on the severity of your child's condition. Very few families can afford these prices out of pocket. However, Social Security has assistance options available for families.

  • Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). This program helps adults with disabilities meet daily expenses if they cannot work. To qualify for this insurance, you or your adult child will need to have accumulated work credit and a decade's worth of social security payments. Adult children diagnosed before the age of 22 can qualify as well. Social Security can deny many of these applications prior to appeal.
  • Supplementary Security Income (SSI). This program helps families who do not qualify for SSDI, are low income, and whose children meet Social Security definitions of disability.

Families can qualify for both SSI and SSDI. If the payments are not sufficient to cover treatment costs, you can apply for Oregon supplemental state assistance if your child qualifies for SSI. Both SSDI and SSI programs are subject to the same medical evaluation by your state's Disability Determination Services agency.

How to Apply for Social Security Benefits in Oregon

You can apply for social security benefits in Oregon in one of three ways. The easiest and most preferable option is to file an application online at the Social Security Administration website. You can also visit your local Social Security office and file an application in person. Or, you can request an application through mail by calling (800) 772-1213.

Many SSDI applications receive a denial, and you can appeal the decision within 60 days. During the initial application process, your child will need to undergo a medical evaluation by Oregon's Disability Determination Services, which you can visit here:

Disability Determination Services
Department of Human Services
3150 Lancaster Dr., NE
Salem, OR 97305-1350
(800) 452-2147

It may beneficial to seek the assistance of an attorney with experience in the Social Security application process.