Social Security Administration (SSA) provides benefits quickly to claimants whose medical conditions are so serious that they clearly meet the disability standards. The two fast-track processes, Quick Disability Determinations (QDD) and Compassionate Allowances (CAL), use technology to identify claimants with the most severe disabilities allowing to expedite SSA decisions on those cases while maintaining accuracy. These initiatives have been two of the greatest successes in recent years. Some cases are approved in a matter of days instead of months. The QDD process uses a computer-based predictive model to screen initial applications to identify cases where a favorable disability determination is highly likely and medical evidence is readily available. By identifying QDD claims early in the process, SSA prioritizes this workload and expedite case processing. SSA has used QDD nationally since February 2008. The QDD predictive model is refined to maximize its capacity to identify accurately these cases, to expand the QDD process to serve additional claimants. The CAL process is a way of quickly identifying diseases and other medical conditions that invariably qualify under the Listing of Impairments based on the minimal objective medical information. The CAL process allows SSA to target quickly the most obviously disabled individuals for allowances based on objective medical evidence that can be obtained quickly.
Fast-tracked cases consist of those cases identified as Quick Disability Determination (QDD), Compassionate Allowance (CAL), or both.
The reporting periods of various fiscal years include:
– Fiscal Year 2010 (September 26, 2009 through September 24, 2010)
– Fiscal Year 2011 (September 25, 2010 through September 30, 2011)
– Fiscal Year 2012 (October 1, 2011 through September 28, 2012)
– Fiscal Year 2013 (September 29, 2012 through September 27, 2013)
– Fiscal Year 2014 (September 28, 2013 through September 26, 2014)
– Fiscal Year 2015 (September 27, 2014 through September 25, 2015)
– Fiscal Year 2016 (September 26, 2015 through September 30, 2016)
– Fiscal Year 2017 (October 01, 2016 through September 29, 2017)
A reporting month runs from the last Saturday of the month through the last Friday of the following month. The dataset are updated and reported annually based on the fiscal year. One of the performance measures for the Agency is to achieve the target percentage of initial disability claims identified as Quick Disability Determination (QDD) or a Compassionate Allowance (CAL). This performance measure is a national percentage based on the cases identified as QDD or CAL for the reporting month of September. SSA derived the percentages reported in these dataset in the same manner as this performance measure except that the criteria is expanded to include fast-tracked cases for the entire reporting FY. The dataset represent the agency’s programmatic disability data used to administer the disability process and are published in official agency reports.