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Highlights

GAO reviewed the Social Security Administration's (SSA) effectiveness in evaluating state disability determination services' (DDS) disability determinations.

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Recommendations

Matter for Congressional Consideration

Matter Status
Congress should revise section 221(c) of the Social Security Act to exclude continuing disability reviews from the universe of DDS decisions SSA is required to review. SSA could then limit its reviews of continuances to a quality assurance sample and transfer administrative resources to a more cost-effective targeted review of initial DDS allowances.
Closed - Implemented

Recommendations for Executive Action

Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Department of Health and Human Services 1. The Secretary of Health and Human Services should direct SSA to use a targeted sample for its preeffectuation reviews of initial DDS allowances. While this would require some additional review and medical staff, costs would be far exceeded by the reductions in future benefit payments resulting from the targeted reviews.
Closed - Implemented
In February 1991, SSA implemented an automated per sample selection which will select target samples of state DDS decisions. This process is now operational in all DDS.

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