Social Security Administration Physical Consultative Exam (CE)

A physical CE or consultative examination is an examination performed by a medical professional who is paid by Social Security to give a current status of a disability claimant's physical condition.

Generally, these examinations are quick basic examinations meant only to ascertain the status of an individual's physical condition. To that end, the examination usually involves all elements of a standard physical examination (blood pressure, reflexes, heart rate, etc.).

Medical professionals hired to perform consultative examinations make other observations about disability applicants such as: their ability to ambulate, get on and off the examination table, etc.

Why? These observations provide disability examiners with an opinion as to a disability applicant's functional capacity and limitations. Social Security Disability is based upon what an individual is able to do in spite of the limitations imposed by their disabling medical condition rather than their specific medical conditions.

About the Author: Tim Moore is a former Social Security Disability Examiner in North Carolina, has been interviewed by the NY Times and the LA Times on the disability system, and is an Accredited Disability Representative (ADR) in North Carolina. For assistance on a disability application or Appeal in NC, click here.

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