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Starting College - Disability Accomodations?


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#1 sandygears

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 10:51 AM

Hi!

I am 35 years old and starting college again to complete my undergraduate degree.
The first time around, from 18-22, I developed Narcolepsy (with Cataplexy) but was undiagnosed. Because of this, I did not complete my degree.
Now I am finally starting again, at a different school, and applied to the Disability office for accommodations.

Unfortunately, the Disability Office requires a new (within one year old) verification of disability, despite all the paperwork I gave them of my sleep studies and forms filled out by my diagnosing sleep specialist neurologist. Under my current health insurance/plan, sleep studies and special neurologists are not covered, so I have asked my primary doctor to fill out the form. However, I want to say his understanding of narcolepsy- and the impacts it will have for a student- is pretty poor.

Should I just fill out the form myself and ask him to sign it?

Does anyone know of any good articles or factsheets directed towards doctors or the medical community that could help in this case?

The accommodations I could think of that I asked the Disability office included: nap spaces, understanding if I fall asleep in class, the ability to stand or do some sort of handiwork while in a lecture, etc.

Has any other college students found any tips or tricks or ways that their Disability offices could help them?

Thank you so much! Today is my first day- wish me luck!

Sincerely,

Melodie

p.s. I am attaching the verification form they want a 'diagnostician' to fill out.

Attached Files



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Posted 21 August 2012 - 01:23 PM

Hi!

I am 35 years old and starting college again to complete my undergraduate degree.
The first time around, from 18-22, I developed Narcolepsy (with Cataplexy) but was undiagnosed. Because of this, I did not complete my degree.
Now I am finally starting again, at a different school, and applied to the Disability office for accommodations.

Unfortunately, the Disability Office requires a new (within one year old) verification of disability, despite all the paperwork I gave them of my sleep studies and forms filled out by my diagnosing sleep specialist neurologist. Under my current health insurance/plan, sleep studies and special neurologists are not covered, so I have asked my primary doctor to fill out the form. However, I want to say his understanding of narcolepsy- and the impacts it will have for a student- is pretty poor.

Should I just fill out the form myself and ask him to sign it?

Does anyone know of any good articles or factsheets directed towards doctors or the medical community that could help in this case?

The accommodations I could think of that I asked the Disability office included: nap spaces, understanding if I fall asleep in class, the ability to stand or do some sort of handiwork while in a lecture, etc.

Has any other college students found any tips or tricks or ways that their Disability offices could help them?

Thank you so much! Today is my first day- wish me luck!

Sincerely,

Melodie

p.s. I am attaching the verification form they want a 'diagnostician' to fill out.



That sucks but I've gone through the same thing. I had to get 2 neuropsych evaluations to verify that I am still disabled from my severe traumatic brain injury. The doctors even told me it was a waste of time because it wouldn't change. I have a really good letter my sleep doctor sent to the disability office I'll try to find it and copy paste so you can get an idea. It said I should get extra time for tests because of difficulty concentrating, priority scheduling so that I don't have to take early morning classes, not be penalized for tardies, and some other things I can't remember at the moment. He also attached a long description of narcolepsy - saying that it isn't a sleep disorder, it's a neurological disorder, and explaining about cataplexy and hallucinations. I'll try to find it and put it on here. Hope you had a good first day!

#3 Bexterina

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Posted 24 August 2012 - 03:35 PM

Hi Melodie,

I think you should just ask your regular physician to fill out the paperwork. I read through it and it does not appear to require any additional documentation other than what the doctor feels necessary. I am in graduate school and work with my university's disability services department. My sleep specialist filled out my paperwork, but it was pretty similar to the paperwork your school uses. Registering with disability services was a huge help.

If for some reason this doesn't work out for you, I still recommend approaching each of your professors and informing them of your N and how it may affect you in class. Most professors are really great about it. It's better than having them think you are bored. Good luck with your studies.

Rebecca

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 01:45 PM

OK I was able to track down my letter (finally)! Sorry class just started for me too and I've been busy. Anyway I'm attaching it here, along with the extra information sheets he sent. Hope it helps.


#5 Megssosleepy

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 02:56 PM

OK I was able to track down my letter (finally)! Sorry class just started for me too and I've been busy. Anyway I'm attaching it here, along with the extra information sheets he sent. Hope it helps.


Thank you for posting these! Very informative! I wish my sleep dr. had given me something like this. He was more like "do you have questions? Well if you think of any go to NN" Thanks doc.!

#6 LDesboro

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 01:33 AM

Hi,

 

My daughter was diagnosed with narcolepsy this past November and is starting Junior college in September. We are trying to figure out how to approach the issue with the college and what documentation and accommodations would be helpful . I found these posts and thought they looked very relevant. I tried to access the fact sheets pdf etc. listed above but was unable to. She is very concerned about starting college and how she will cope, any help would be greatly appreciated.

 

Sincerely,

Lisa



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Posted 01 June 2013 - 10:51 PM

I don't know why those attachements aren't showing up....I'm trying to find them again right now and will post when I find them.



#8 Guest_tabster1_*

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Posted 01 June 2013 - 11:44 PM

Attached File  disability fact sheets.pdf   2.12MB   17 downloads

 

 

 

Attached File  narcolepsy letter.png   175.68KB   11 downloads

 

Hopefully these work. They are showing up for me, let me know if you still have trouble accessing them. I hope your daughter finds them helpful. I don't know if she has cataplexy as well, but if she does she might find it useful to inform her teachers at the beginning of the semester - I have full body attacks and have had the ambulance called on me more than once.