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Mental Health

Volume 407: debated on Tuesday 24 June 2003

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To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office how many of his staff retired on medical grounds due to mental health problems in the last year. [111967]

Between May 2002 and April 2003, the Civil Service Pension Scheme Medical Adviser assessed 241 scheme members as meeting the criteria for medical retirement for reasons attributable to mental ill-health. The vast majority of civil servants belong to the Civil Service Pension Scheme, and there are currently more than 500,000 active members.Mental ill-health in the context of this answer includes a non-exhaustive range of more specific diagnoses, including for example reactive depression, anxiety, psychosis and schizophrenia.Although data on retirements due to mental ill-health can be broken down by individual civil service employer, doing so where the employer has very few cases of this kind runs the risk of revealing the identity of the individuals concerned. In line with exemption 12 of the "Code of Practice on Access to Government Information", such disclosure would constitute or could facilitate an unwarranted invasion of privacy.