Tennessee has the highest number of denied medical disability claims in the United States. In 2017, 72% of applicants were denied – the national average is 66%. The state contracts medical doctors to review all Medicare disability claims. These doctors are paid per review which means the faster they can work, the more money they make.
The federal standard of reviewing disability claims is 1.5 cases per hour. Of the 50 contracted medical doctors in Tennessee, over 25 of them exceed that amount. One of them reviewed a case every 12 minutes.
Some of these cases are short and a few pages. Others comprise of several hundred pages, lab reports, MRI results, X-rays, work records, and other important information. It is the medical doctor’s duty to review the case, in full, and report their findings back to the state. Opinions from experts and previous employees say there is a shortage of medical doctors to review the cases; therefore, it’s impossible to do so without making wrongful rejections.