In order to be entitled to industrial injuries disablement benefit (IIDB) in respect of osteoarthritis of the knee a person must satisfy criteria based on occupation and the level of disablement caused by the disease.
The occupational criteria are as follows:
Underground work as a coal miner up to the end of 1985.
If the work was after 1985, a person must have worked underground in one of the following occupations:
face worker working on a non-mechanised coal face; or
development worker; or
face-salvage worker; or
conveyor belt cleaner; or
conveyor belt attendant.
In total at least 10 years must be spent in the occupation. Pre- and post-1985 periods of employment in the relevant occupation can count towards the 10 year total.
If a person satisfies the occupational criteria the case is referred to medical services for advice on the level of disablement. For IIDB purposes, disablement is assessed by making a comparison with a person of the same age and sex whose physical and mental condition is normal. In each case, advice on the assessment of disablement and the likely duration is given by a doctor specially trained in industrial injuries disablement matters.
The level of disablement for all customers who claim industrial injuries disablement benefit in respect of diseases and accidents caused by occupation is assessed as a percentage up to 100 per cent. The percentage determines the level of payment.
The customer will normally be asked to attend a medical examination carried out by a trained health care professional appointed by the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, who will provide the decision-maker with advice on the level of disablement in each case, taking account of all the evidence available and comparing the customers condition as a result of the effects of the prescribed disease or accident with that of a normal healthy person of the same age and sex.