Welcome

SAMHSA's SSI/SSDI Outreach, Access, and Recovery Technical Assistance (SOAR TA) Center is funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)

The goals of the SOAR program speak directly to one of SAMHSA’s Strategic Initiatives- Recovery Supports. SOAR seeks to end homelessness through increased access to SSI/SSDI income supports, directly addressing SAMHSA’s assertion: “To recover, people need a safe stable place to live.” This is essential, and for many persons in recovery accessing benefits is a first step.  But SOAR extends beyond and also encourages employment as a means to increase individual income and promote recovery in line with the SAMHSA assertion that: “to recover, people need meaningful work and the ability to enhance their skills through education.”

SOAR is a national program designed to increase access to the disability income benefit programs administered by the Social Security Administration (SSA) for eligible adults who are experiencing or at risk of homelessness and have a mental illness, medical impairment, and/or a co-occurring substance use disorder. Read more here and watch the video below to see how SOARWorks!

Recent Questions About SOAR

Q: I received a notice with a patient’s alcohol and drug abuse records that I could not “further disclose” the information. How can I send them on to SSA?
A.
When providers of substance use services (drug and alcohol) release records, they are required to include the following notice from the CFR Title 42:2.32: “This information has been disclosed to you from records protected by Federal confidentiality rules (42 CFR part 2). The Federal rules prohibit...
Q: How do you answer the question: What date applicant became disabled or unable to work? when there is not an exact diagnosis date in medical records.
A.
The date the applicant became disabled is not necessarily the date that he/she was first diagnosed. SSA is looking for the date on which they were unable to work at a substantial gainful level due to their illnessess/conditions. You should enter the date that they were no longer able to work (or...
Q: How do you organize the paperwork for an application while in process?
A.
We recommend creating a case-file folder for each applicant, specifically for SSA and SOAR paperwork. It is helpful if this folder has separate sections to organize your material. While you are gathering information for the application, you can store your interview notes, signed agency releases of...
Q: Is there a refresher course for those who already attended an in-person SOAR training?
A.
In many communities SOAR Local Leads and SOAR Trainers will provide one-day SOAR Fundamentals refresher trainings for individuals who have completed the two-day in-person Stepping Stones to Recovery training or the SOAR Online Course. You can contact leads in your state here: http://soarworks...