Vocational Expert Study Panel

On January 11, 2006, we awarded a contract to SSDC Corporation to convene an expert panel of vocational and occupational medical experts and disability policy and program experts to study the agency’s use of vocational and occupational medical expertise throughout the disability determination process, what changes can be made to improve case adjudication, and what qualifications we should require.  

We selected 21 vocational and occupational medical experts to serve on this panel including individuals with expertise in occupational medicine, psychiatry, psychology, social work, rehabilitation, occupational and physical therapy, nursing, case management, individuals with disabilities, and the disability community. In addition, we included disability determination services administrators and administrative law judges. After several discussions and reviews of distributed background materials, this expert panel met in July 2006 to prepare a report including recommendations for the Commissioner.

We received the Final Core Report from SSDC, "Use of Functional/Vocational Expertise", on March 27, 2007.