How Stroke Can Affect Your Career and Your Finances

People who return to the workforce after stroke rehabilitation may find that their capacity for their previous positions has changed. You can still enjoy a rewarding career after a stroke, although it may require your employer to make accommodations and adaptations for you. For those stroke survivors who are unable to resume their careers, the financial challenges can seem overwhelming. Resources are available to help, though, so make sure that you are taking advantage of all of the forms of assistance that are out there.

Making The Workplace Work For You

Some stroke survivors may be able to return to their careers without missing a beat, while others may need to make significant changes to their work routines, responsibilities or environment. As you move forward in your stroke recovery, your professional activities can involve:

  • Returning to your previous job, with or without accommodations. Under the Americans with Disabilities Act, your employer is required by law to make reasonable accommodations that are needed for you to perform your job.
  • Finding a new career path – Depending on the severity of your post-stroke symptoms and the nature of the work you did before your stroke, accommodations may not be feasible, and it may be necessary to consider a career change.
  • Engaging in meaningful volunteer work – If you are unable to return to paid work, you may want to identify volunteer opportunities that give you purpose.

Work with your care team to develop a plan for resuming professional activities in a way that makes sense for you.

Finding Financial Resources to Help

Increased medical costs in combination with reduced income can put a major dent in a stroke survivor’s financial situation. As such, stroke survivors may want to consider financial assistance programs that can help to defray expenses or supplement income

  • Prescription assistance programs
  • Caregiver assistance programs
  • Private resources, such as grants or GoFundMe campaigns
  • Social Security Disability – if denied initially, can work with a law firm or other advocate to assist.
  • Previously purchased short-term or long-term disability insurance policies

A social worker or case manager who works with your medical providers or insurance company. can help you identify sources of assistance. Patient advocates ( can also help to navigate health care billing and other financial aspects of stroke rehabilitation and services. Additionally, the American Stroke Association has published a helpful guide that covers post-stroke financial concerns: Many stroke survivors feel uncomfortable about asking for the help they need, whether that help involves adjustments to their work duties or financial assistance programs. Don’t be shy in accessing the resources that will help you lead a full life again.