It takes, on average, two weeks rather than months to approve Compassionate Allowance cases. To further speed things up, SSA has announced a revision to their approval process that will allow state agency disability examiners to make fully favorable decisions on their own without having to wait for a state medical or psychological consultant to okay their decisions. This could reduce the wait for benefits to days.
The revision will also free up the medical examiners to make determinations on backlogged cases that are waiting months for decisions.
SSA Commissioner Michael J. Astrue, in an SSA press release issued October 13, said, “The new rules… will help us get disability benefits to the most severely disabled Americans even faster…our fast-track processes will now be even faster and help speed much needed benefits to our most vulnerable citizens.”
An electronic processing system, called Quick Disability Determination (QDD), analyzes data and quickly identifies Compassionate Allowance cases.
This year, according to Astrue, more than 100,000 severely disabled people received decisions within days of filing for benefits. The change in the approval process is expected to get benefits quickly to tens of thousands more people with disabilities.
More Diseases Considered for Compassionate Allowance
SSA established its Compassionate Allowance initiative to speed up the process of getting disability benefits to those Americans who clearly meet SSA’s definition of a disabling medical condition. Currently, there are 88 medical conditions on the Compassionate Allowance list, which is expected to grow as SSA continues to investigate other diseases to add to it.
In fact, a public hearing has been scheduled for November 9 in Baltimore, Maryland to discuss how to identify and implement compassionate allowances for citizens with cardiovascular diseases and multiple organ transplants. It is the sixth hearing since 2007, with more to come.
At Freedom Disability, we are pleased that the Social Security Administration is working hard to meet its obligation of quickly providing benefits to disabled Americans who cannot afford to wait.