Denise, welcome to the forum. I'm so sorry your husband is ill. You certainly have had a bad year. Unfortunately, I doubt that your husband would qualify for Medicaid, even if he were on SSD. It is determined by income. I know when I was trying to get Medicaid, the only way to get it in FL is to be considered disabled by Social Security and to also be very low income; or have a child in the home less than 18 yrs. old, or be blind or deaf. Even then, if you have too many assets, you don't qualify. I would say that you definitely have too many assets, even if your rental properties do not always bring in money. They would see that as "potential income." I believe you are allowed to have the house you are living in, a car, and no more than $2,000 in the bank. That's it, at least for FL. The financial cap may be higher in other states.
I agree that it is a good idea for your husband to apply for SSD. Get a lawyer after the first denial, and then prepare for a long wait. It took them 2 yrs. to approve me, but I did get all the back pay. Since it had been 2 yrs., I also got Medicare right off the bat. If one is approved in less than 2 yrs., then there has to be a total 2-year wait for Medicare. I do have Medically Needy from Medicare, which does pay my Medicare Part B premium and my Part D Prescription Drug Plan premium.
I was in the same position as your husband for most of the time I've been sick (hep C, cirrhosis, liver cancer, bilateral hip replacements with 2 revisions on the left) and had to get care at a Univ. of FL hospital. It is not the best of care, for sure. As soon as I got Medicare, I switched to Mayo, which literally saved my life.
As for the Plaquenil, ask the rheumatologist if there is an alternative med that your hubby could take. Plaquenil is contraindicated in persons with hepatic function impairment.
I'm glad you decided to post. You will find a lot of support, as well as information, here.