SOAR Critical Component: The Medical Summary Report
The Medical Summary Report (MSR) is SOAR’s signature tool and key to a successful application. It provides a succinct, comprehensive summary of the child’s personal and treatment history and its impact on his or her life. It also clearly describes the factors affecting functioning and ability to work.
The Medical Summary Report (MSR)
The Medical Summary Report (MSR) is a letter written by the case manager and submitted as part of the SOAR application packet. The skills you practiced in writing functional descriptions will be put to use in your MSR letter. View sample MSRs here.
Organizing the MSR
We strongly urge you to use the SOAR MSR Interview Guide and Template to help you organize information as you gather it.
- The structure of your MSR should follow the same structure as the template.
- The template is organized into seven main sections and a summary, which are summarized in the table below.
Writing the MSR
Your goal is to help the DDS examiner to “see” how the child functions.
- The challenge is to transform information you’ve collected into a vivid picture of the child and their functioning as compared to children of the same age who do not have impairments.
- Remember to directly quote the child and parent or caregiver wherever possible.
- Be sure to attach any referenced documents to your report.
Avoid Using Opinions in the MSR
DDS examiners are looking for factual evidence based in the medical records, progress notes, quotes from your interviews, observations made and collateral information.
- Avoid using your own opinions in the MSR or projections about what might happen in the future.
- For example, it would be inappropriate to write, “The MSR shows that this child is clearly disabled,” because it is DDS’s responsibility to make that decision.
- Make connections between the symptoms and functional impairments but do not analyze or judge what that means.
- To avoid inserting opinions, it is often helpful to rely on direct quotes from the parent, child, or medical records when presenting your evidence, rather than paraphrasing what he or she says.
- Remember, you are describing how the child’s functioning compares to the functioning of children of the same age who do not have impairments.
Summary and Signing the Report
At the end of the MSR, write a brief summary of the evidence presented and sign the report.
- Be sure to provide your contact information.
- If possible, have it co-signed by an acceptable medical source who has seen the child and reviewed the report.
Acceptable Medical Sources for Child SSI Claims
- Licensed physicians (medical or osteopathic doctors)
- Licensed or certified psychologists (including school psychologists)
- Licensed Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs)
- Licensed Physician Assistants (PAs)
- Licensed optometrists for the measurement of visual acuity and visual fields
- Licensed podiatrists for impairments of the foot or ankle only
- Qualified speech-language pathologists for speech or language impairments only
- Licensed audiologists for impairments of hearing- loss, auditory processing disorders, and balance disorders
While SSA requires evidence from physicians, psychiatrists, psychologists, school psychologists, APRNs, or PAs (“acceptable medical sources”) to establish a medically determinable impairment, it is not necessary for an “acceptable medical source” to write the MSR.
- However, a co-signature by an acceptable medical source raises the MSR from “collateral information” to “medical evidence.”
- When asking a treating medical provider to co-sign your report
- Stress that he or she is not responsible for the decision that DDS makes
- The co-signer must know the child
- Share the SOAR article What Medical Providers Need to Know about SOAR
- A well-written MSR is an essential part of the SOAR Application Packet, even if a co-signature is not available.
|II. Personal History and Family Background||
|III. Educational History||
|IV. Substance Use||
|V. Physical Health||
|VI. Mental Health||
|VII. Functional Information||
- Adult Course
- August, 2022
- Medical Summary Report (MSR)