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Benefit Applications

Volume 449: debated on Tuesday 25 July 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will take steps to improve the training received by health care professionals involved in the application process for benefit assessments in respect of (a) multiple sclerosis and (b) other long-term fluctuating conditions. (86236)

All Medical Services doctors who carry out benefit assessments receive training in disability assessment medicine, which is constantly evaluated and improved. The training includes the need to take account of long-term fluctuating conditions, such as multiple sclerosis, and how these conditions affect a person over a period of time.

They are supported in their work by evidence-based protocols that provide up to date guidance on disabling conditions and their effects.

Doctors are also required to undertake continuing professional education on topics relevant to disability assessment.