staying active

Vocational Rehabilitation

Having a job or career is important to many people with end-stage renal disease (ESRD). Working can provide an individual with a sense of value, income, and purpose to support their family. Qsource ESRD Networks work with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to support gainful employment for ESRD patients. Dialysis patients can return to work, maintain their dialysis schedule, and live a full and healthy life by picking the best options for their lifestyle.

The Conditions for Coverage for ESRD Facilities provides guidance on how dialysis facilities are to support patients to achieve an appropriate level of productive activity. Productive activity includes evaluation for referral to services, as appropriate for older youth and adult patients who desire to return to work and/or improve independent living. All patients age 18-64 should be screened for interest and provided education on vocational rehabilitation and employment network services. The social worker should have available up-to-date community referral options for services and should make referrals in partnership with the patient.

Rehabilitation Services in the Qsource ESRD Networks Service Area

Ticket to Work

Ticket to Work is a voluntary work incentive program offered by the Social Security Administration to those receiving Social Security Disability (SSI or SSDI) benefits. Ticket to Work is intended to remove barriers that keep Social Security Disability recipients from attempting to return to work, such as fear of losing health care coverage or being unable to resume benefits if a job does not work out. The goal of the program is to help Social Security Disability recipients who wish to return to the workforce. The Ticket to Work program makes it possible for individuals to test their ability to work without losing their benefits.

Employment Networks (ENs) are a part of SSA’s Ticket to Work program. An EN is a private organization or public agency (including a State Vocational Rehabilitation agency) which provides employment services, vocational rehabilitation services, and other types of support to beneficiaries with disabilities under the Ticket program. Once you are assigned a Ticket, you can work with an Employment Network to receive needed services and support for returning to work, training for a new job, etc.
There are many resources out there for patients to consider. These organizations have partnered with us to assist you in getting your patients the services they need. Please feel free to reach out to any or all of them as some are regional but many are national. Download the Ticket Referral Form.

WISE Webinars

The Social Security Administration hosts monthly Work Incentive Seminar Event (WISE) webinars to provide education about the Ticket to Work program and work incentives for people who are age 18 through 64 and receive Social Security Disability benefits. WISE webinars are typically held on the fourth Wednesday of each month.

Employment Networks
Employment Networks (ENs) are a part of SSA’s Ticket to Work program. An EN is a private organization or public agency (including a State Vocational Rehabilitation agency) which provides employment services, vocational rehabilitation services, and other types of support to beneficiaries with disabilities under the Ticket program. Once you are assigned a Ticket, you can work with an Employment Network to receive needed services and support for returning to work, training for a new job, etc.
Network Partners
There are many resources out there for patients to consider. These organizations have partnered with us to assist you in getting your patients the services they need. Please feel free to reach out to any or all of them as some are regional but many are national. Download the Ticket Referral Form.
Wise Webinars

WISE Webinars

The Social Security Administration hosts monthly Work Incentive Seminar Event (WISE) webinars to provide education about the Ticket to Work program and work incentives for people who are age 18 through 64 and receive Social Security Disability benefits. WISE webinars are typically held on the fourth Wednesday of each month.

Patient Stories

Listen as members of the Patient Advisory Council speak with Quin Taylor about working while on dialysis.

Clarissa Zetina was on dialysis for 15 years before she received a kidney transplant. She is now 4 years post-transplant. While she was on dialysis she earned her degree in Business Management and Accounting, attending school full time and working part time, at the same time juggling the complications of being a dialysis patient.

Samuel Hayes is a Peritoneal Dialysis patient from Champaign, IL who currently works full time. He credits is his success to his family, especially his wife who has been by his side to support him in his journey. He has been able to continue his work throughout his journey with dialysis.

The Patient Advisory Council developed Conversations on Demand – live conversations with patient subject matter experts around their journey to returning to work.

Hear from Bethany Stevenson, MSSW, LMSW, LCSW a Renal Social Worker as she shares why vocational rehabilitation is important for patients and a great story from her patient Charles on his journey with Vocational Rehabilitation. Listen Here.

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