More than seven years ago Social Security asked the public to comment on ways to improve the mental disorders listing that they use to decide whether people are disabled based upon emotional issues. Changes have now been proposed, and we are now in a 90 day comment period so that you can actually tell SSA what you think about their proposal. http://www.ssa.gov/ will put you in touch with the people in charge.
Proposed changes include dividing impairments into broad categories rather than the currently used specific diagnosis analysis. Interestingly, the government now has defined the words “marked” and “extreme” which may add more confusion because they further complicate using test scores and standard deviation to arrive at the definition.
Finally, intellectual disability and mental retardation have been combined while further clarification about acceptable medical sources including a physician, psychologist, and other sources such as physician assistants, nurses, licensed clinical social workers and therapist is included. SSA now wants to recognize that these other medical sources play an important role in evaluating claimants in the disability process.