Workers may be eligible for disability benefits for severe medical conditions that prevent them from holding steady, reliable employment, states the Social Security Disability and SSI Resource Center. The conditions must have persisted for at least one year or be expected to continue for a year or longer.
Any medical condition that prevents someone from holding gainful employment may be eligible for disability payments, according to the Social Security Disability and SSI Resource Center. To receive disability payments, the applicant must have worked at an SSD-eligible job for a specified length of time and no longer be able to perform those duties. Qualifying conditions may be physical or mental in nature. The most common physical conditions include arthritis, irritable bowel syndrome, high blood pressure, diabetes and cancer. Some common psychiatric conditions include bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, major depression and autism.
In addition to the standard list of qualifying disabling conditions, the Social Security Administration recognizes a list of 88 priority conditions under the Compassionate Allowance program, reports DisabilityBenefitsCenter.org. These illnesses are flagged for expedited processing, allowing applicants to receive a qualification decision within three weeks. The 88 conditions include illnesses and diseases such as acute leukemia, various forms of cancer, genetic diseases and other acute conditions that are deemed to justify immediate assistance.