Decision times for children applying for disability for the first time will become shorter
From July 1st, the decision times for children applying for disability for the first time will become shorter. A decision about the establishment of disability shall be made by the Social Insurance Board on the grounds of sufficient health data within 15 workdays. Until now, the process of applying for disability, together with putting together a rehabilitation plan, took an average of 88 days.
The Parliament of Estonia adopted an amendment to the Social Benefits for Disabled Persons Act, establishing that disability of a child applying for disability for the first time can be established before sending them to receive rehabilitation services and putting together a rehabilitation plan. Before the amendment, it was first required to come up with a plan for rehabilitation, which would then be followed by a decision on establishing disability.
„According to the new system, if the medical expert of the Social Insurance Board finds that the information on the state of health is sufficient for establishing a disability, we will formalise the decision on establishing disability. If the medical expert finds that putting together a rehabilitation plan is nevertheless required, we will first forward the child to the service of putting together a plan for rehabilitation and then, by also relying on the plan for rehabilitation, we can make a decision on establishing disability,“ commented Merlin Murumets, the manager of expert assessment and social benefits unit of the Social Insurance Board.
A child who has been diagnosed with a disability also has the right to receive the service of social rehabilitation. Together with a decision on the establishment of disability, a letter of referral will be issued that can be used to contact a suitable facility providing rehabilitation services. Children get access to the social rehabilitation service outside of the waiting list.
The amendment to the Social Benefits for Disabled Persons Act shall take effect from July 1st 2017.