Social Security Administration Data for
Periodic Continuing Disability Reviews (CDRs) Processed and Backlog of Cases
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Periodic CDR Cases Processed
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Agency Program Description
We perform continuing disability reviews (CDRs) to determine if disabled beneficiaries still meet the medical requirements for eligibility. We conduct two types of CDRs: full medical reviews and mailers. Using computer-scoring models, we identify cases for which there is a lower likelihood of demonstrating medical improvement. In those cases, we send a questionnaire (mailer) to the beneficiary in order to obtain additional information, which we then use to determine if a full medical review is appropriate. Full medical reviews are expensive because each one requires a new medical evaluation and disability determination.
This important agency activity is fully explained in the Annual Report on Continuing Disability Reviews – FY 2014.
Data Collection Description
We conduct periodic CDRs to ensure that only those beneficiaries who remain disabled continue to receive monthly benefits. For case reviews that we initiate centrally when a medical review diary matures, we conduct periodic CDRs using one of two methods. We send some cases to the State Disability Determination Services (DDS) for a full medical review; we complete others using the mailer process.
We decide whether to initiate a full medical review or send a mailer after determining the likelihood of medical improvement. We send cases with higher likelihood of medical improvement to DDSs for full medical reviews. For those cases with lower likelihood of medical improvement, we send mailers to obtain more information from the beneficiaries, which we evaluate to determine if there is any indication of medical improvement. If we find an indication of medical improvement, we send the case to a DDS for a full medical review. Otherwise, we set a new medical review diary and schedule the case for a future CDR.
We conduct some CDRs outside the centralized process based on events such as voluntary or third-party reports of medical improvement. We always send these CDRs to the DDSs for a full medical review. In addition, there is a subset of cases where the medical review diary matures but we curtail further development for technical reasons, such as the suspension or termination of benefits for non-medical reasons. We refer to these cases as “administrative closures”.
Data Dictionary for Periodic CDR Cases Processed
Field A: Program Involvement, is the listing by Old Age, Survivor and Disability Insurance (OASDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) with sub-categories (i.e. disabled workers, disabled adults, disabled children…). Section 1614(a) (4) of the Act gives us discretionary authority to conduct periodic CDRs on SSI recipients. On September 28, 1994, we issued a Federal Register notice that we would begin conducting periodic SSI CDRs on October 1, 1994, so the data reflects both OASDI and SSI data.
Field B: Total CDRs processed, indicates the number of CDR cases processed for the fiscal year that runs from October 1 through September 30.
Field C: Mailers Only, indicates the number of deferrals after review.
Field D:Initial Field Office FTC (failure to cooperate) Terminations, indicates the number of beneficiaries who had their eligibility for disability benefits terminated for non-compliance with the field office request for necessary information.
Field E: Full Medical Reviews (FMRs), indicates the number of cases that resulted in a full medical review.
Field F: Initial Cessations (FMRs), indicates the number of cases in which there was an initial determination that benefits should cease. This data does not include any changes in cessation decisions resulting from appeals.
Periodic CDR Case Backlog
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This dataset contains the number of periodic CDR cases backlogged (i.e., not released for processing on schedule) by fiscal year from 2014 onward and is currently available in the following formats:
CSV | XLSX
Agency Program Description
Periodic CDRs on Old-Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance (OASDI) beneficiaries are mandated by the Social Security Disability Amendments of 1980. The Commissioner of Social Security may make determinations to waive the requirement that we review the continuing eligibility of disability beneficiaries with nonpermanent disabilities at least once every 3 years. We consider the cases for which we do not conduct a timely (3 year) periodic CDR as backlogged until we are able to initiate the CDR for those cases.
Section 1614(a) (4) of the Act gives us discretionary authority to conduct periodic CDRs on SSI recipients. On September 28, 1994, we issued a Federal Register notice that we would begin conducting periodic SSI CDRs on October 1, 1994.
This important agency activity is fully explained in the Annual Report on Continuing Disability Review – FY 2014.
Data Dictionary for Periodic CDR Case Backlog
Field A: Fiscal Year, or federal fiscal year which begins on October 1 and ends on September 30.
Field B: OASDI-Title II, provides counts of Social Security Title II periodic CDRs in the backlog. This is a net figure of unreleased full medical review cases.
Field C: SSI-Title XVI Adult, provides counts of Supplemental Security Income adult periodic CDRs in the backlog. This is a net figure of unreleased full medical review cases.
Filed D: SSI-Title XVI Low Birth Weight, provides counts of Supplemental Security Income children’s CDR cases in the backlog that were awarded disability based on low birth weight criteria. This is a net figure of unreleased full medical review cases.
Field E: SSI-Title XVI Other Children, provides counts of Supplemental Security Income children’s CDR cases in the backlog that were awarded based on other than low birth weight criteria. This is a net figure of unreleased full medical review cases.
Field F: Total Backlog, provides the total number of CDRs not released on time based on a net figure of unreleased full medical review cases.