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The Social Security Administration (SSA) recently issued new rules for evaluating Parkinson’s disease (PD) for disability insurance, recognizing that people living with PD can experience both motor and non-motor symptoms.

This is the first large-scale overhaul of these rules since 1985, and the first time the SSA has incorporated the non-motor aspects of Parkinson’s disease into its criteria for evaluating Social Security disability insurance (SSDI) applications. These changes are part of a larger shift in how doctors, researchers, policymakers and insurers understand the impact of non-motor symptoms.

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