August 22, 2011
Patricia Foster, 64, poses for a photo in front of the Strom Thurmond Federal Building that houses the Social Security Administration in Columbia, S.C., Thursday, Aug. 18, 2011. A former nurse, Foster said she had a plate inserted after badly injuring her neck in 2005, when she was attacked by a patient suffering from a mental illness. Twice she was turned down before finally receiving Social Security disability benefits in 2009.
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Laid-off workers and aging baby boomers are flooding Social Security’s disability program with benefit claims, pushing the financially strapped system toward the brink of insolvency.