Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Parents Drugging Their Children for Money

4-Part series in the Boston Globe

by Patricia Wen


A legacy of unintended side effects

A Globe investigation has found that this Supplemental Security Income program - created by

Congress primarily to aid indigent children with severe physical disabilities such as cerebral palsy,

Down syndrome, and blindness - now largely serves children with relatively common mental, learning

and behavioral disorders such as ADHD. It has also created, for many needy parents, a financial

motive to seek prescriptions for powerful drugs for their children.


A coveted benefit, a failure to follow up

Government data show that Social Security officials have, over the past decade, fallen far short
when it comes to conducting the regular case reviews required by statute. A typical SSI

disability case is supposed to get a full medical review every three years, but from 2000 to 2008

the agency examined, on average, only 10 percent of the children on SSI.

Read the full article here:


A cruel dilemma for those on the cusp of adult life

Many teenage recipients of federal disability benefits say they feel pressure to avoid work,

not wanting to raise doubts about their status and jeopardize vital family income.


Brown calls for hearings on disability program

US Senator Scott Brown called yesterday for Senate hearings to examine a $10 billion federal
disability program for indigent children, a response to a three-part Globe series published this

week that alleged troubling incentives that pose risks to children.