Forms and Letters
Forms and Letters
What is the difference between forms and letters?Some community resources and social services have specific forms they require to be completed. Others do not, so advocacy letters are more effective. We’ve included both of these types of resources on this page to cover the key resources for patients in RI and beyond.
What do I do with these forms or letters?After completing a form or letter, please follow the instructions listed in the “Next steps” section. Sometimes, you will be able to fax or email the document. Other times, you will need to ask your patient to bring a paper copy directly to the appropriate person.
“Disability” terminologyIndividuals who are differently-abled may qualify for state and federal resources and benefits. Some public benefits, like SSI (Supplemental Security Income) or SSDI (Social Security Disability Insurance), require that a patient fall under the SSA (Social Security Administration) definition of disability in order to qualify. Other benefits, however, simply require that a medical provider considers the patient to have a disability in a broader sense. Several of the resources included here ask a provider to label a patient’s “disability” and explain this diagnosis. It is important to note that when this happens, there is an inherent pathologization of “disability”, which is part of a larger historical framework that has been occurring since welfare reform practices in the US. In many instances, the label of “disability” is used by medical providers to help individuals access resources in a social services climate that is bureaucratic and does not often grant eligibility. Nonetheless, it is important to recognize this history and the impact and stigmatization of the language we use.
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