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Personal Independence Payment: Medical Examinations

Question for Department for Work and Pensions

UIN 102750, tabled on 12 January 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment her Department has made of the mental and physical pressures that medical reassessments relating to a personal independence payment claim has on claimants with a chronic illnesses or a hidden disability.

Answered on

20 January 2022

The Department aims to continually improve the assessment process for Personal Independence Payment (PIP) through customer insight, stakeholder engagement and qualitative research. For people with the highest level of support and with severe and lifelong health conditions which will not improve or will deteriorate, new guidance was introduced in August 2018 for both new claims and award reviews to ensure they receive an ongoing award of PIP, with a light-touch review at the 10-year point. Since 2019 ongoing awards with a light-touch review at the 10-year point are also applied to most awards for people over State Pension age.

PIP is designed to support an individual’s functional needs arising from a range of disabilities, including chronic or hidden illnesses, and the PIP Assessment Guide (PIPAG) makes clear that Health Professionals must take into consideration the invisible nature of some symptoms such as fatigue and pain in their assessment of a claimant.

We published ‘Shaping Future Support: The Health and Disability Green Paper’ in July 2021 and asked for views on how we might improve health assessments considering a number of options. The consultation closed on 11 October 2021 and we will set out next steps in a White Paper later this year.