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Welfare Reform

Volume 603: debated on Thursday 10 December 2015

Later today I will be launching a consultation on how the use of aids and appliances is taken into account when determining eligibility for the daily living component of PIP.

This is in light of concerns that the current policy in this area may not be working as intended, as was highlighted by the first independent review of the PIP assessment undertaken by Paul Gray. Evidence suggests that significant numbers of people who are likely to have low or minimal additional costs are being awarded the daily living component of the benefit solely because they may benefit from aids and appliances across a number of the activities. There have also been a number of recent judicial decisions, based on the current legislation, that have broadened the scope of aids and appliances to include articles, such as beds and chairs, that are unlikely to be a reliable indicator of extra costs.

These developments are inconsistent with the original policy intent of awarding the benefit to claimants with the greatest need to help them meet the extra costs arising from their disability or long-term health condition.

The consultation will therefore seek views on whether we should make changes to the current policy on aids and appliances in relation to the daily living component and, if we do, what these should be. The consultation document outlines five broad options for making changes but also welcomes other suggestions.

The consultation is available at: