Social Security Administration: Revised Medical Criteria for Determination of Disability, Endocrine System and Related Criteria

Published by the Government Accountability Office on 1999-08-27.

Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)

United States General Accounting Office                                Office of the General Counsel
Washington, DC 20548


          August 27, 1999

          The Honorable William V. Roth
          The Honorable Daniel Patrick Moynihan
          Ranking Minority Member
          Committee on Finance
          United States Senate

          The Honorable Bill Archer
          The Honorable Charles B. Rangel
          Ranking Minority Member
          Committee on Ways and Means
          House of Representatives

          Subject: Social Security Administration: Revised Medical Criteria for Determination
                   of Disability, Endocrine System and Related Criteria

          Pursuant to section 801(a)(2)(A) of title 5, United States Code, this is our report on a
          major rule promulgated by Social Security Administration (SSA), entitled “Revised
          Medical Criteria for Determination of Disability, Endocrine System and Related
          Criteria” (RIN: 0960-AE65). We received the rule on August 18, 1999. It was
          published in the Federal Register as a final rule on August 24, 1999. 64 Fed. Reg.

          The final rule revises part 404, subpart P, Chapter II of Title 20 of the Code of Federal
          Regulations by deleting listing 9.09, “Obesity,” from the Listing of Impairments. It
          adds guidance about evaluating claims for benefits involving obesity to the prefaces
          of the musculoskeletal, respiratory, and cardiovascular body system listings.

          Enclosed is our assessment of the SSA’s compliance with the procedural steps
          required by section 801(a)(1)(B)(i) through (iv) of title 5 with respect to the rule.
          Our review indicates that SSA complied with the applicable requirements.

          If you have any questions about this report, please contact James W. Vickers,
          Assistant General Counsel, at (202) 512-8210. The official responsible for GAO
          evaluation work relating to the subject matter of the rule is Cindy Fagnoni, Director,

Education, Workforce, and Income Security Issues. Ms. Fagnoni can be reached at
(202) 512-7215.

Sincerely yours,

Robert P. Murphy
General Counsel


cc: Ms. Georgia E. Myers
    Acting Regulations Officer
    Social Security Administration

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       ANALYSIS UNDER 5 U.S.C. § 801(a)(1)(B)(i)-(iv) OF A MAJOR RULE
                             ISSUED BY THE
                            (RIN: 0960-AE65)

(i) Cost-benefit analysis

The Social Security Administration conducted a cost-benefit analysis of the final
rule. The analysis concludes that, over 5 years, the final rule will result in reduced
program outlays of $250 million in the title II program, $125 million in the
Supplemental Security Income program, $140 million in the Medicare program, and
$160 million in the Medicaid program.

(ii) Agency actions relevant to the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. §§ 603-605,
607, and 609

The Commissioner of the Social Security Administration has certified that the final
rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small

(iii) Agency actions relevant to sections 202-205 of the Unfunded Mandates Reform
Act of 1995, 2 U.S.C. §§ 1532-1535

The final rule does not impose either an intergovernmental or private sector mandate
of over $100 million per year, as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Act of 1995.

(iv) Other relevant information or requirements under acts and executive orders

Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. §§ 551 et seq.

The final rule was issued using the notice and comment procedures contained at
5 U.S.C. 553. On March 11, 1998, a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking was published
(63 Fed. Reg. 11854) and over 200 comments were received in response to the
Notice. The comments are responded to in the preamble to the final rule.

Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 U.S.C. §§ 3501-3520

The final rule does not contain any information collections which are subject to
review by the Office of Management and Budget under the Paperwork Reduction

Statutory authorization for the rule

The final rule is issued pursuant to the authority found in Sections 202; 205(a), (b),
and (d)-(h); 216(i); 221(a) and (i); 222(c); 223; 225; and 702(a)(5) of the Social
Security Act (42 U.S.C. 402; 405(a), (b), and (d)-(h); 416(i); 421(a) and (i); 422(c); 423;
425; and 902(a)(5)) and Section 211(b) of Public Law 104-193, 110 Stat. 2105, 2189.

Executive Order No. 12866

The final rule was reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget as an
“economically significant” regulatory action and was approved by OMB on July 9,
1999, as meeting the requirements of Executive Order No. 12866.

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