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Benefits
Benefits

New ‘Single’ Benefit?

Benefit changes for Disabled people?

Shaping Future Support is the DWP Health and Disability related ‘Green Paper’ released this Summer.

The DWP are looking to review Employment Support Allowance, Personal Independence Payment and Universal Credit for disabled people and have not ruled out a new single benefit.

It’s great to hear that as part of the review there seems to be commitment to helping people navigate the benefits system and there are other positive points for example – the extension of special terminal illness rules from six months to one year and giving Decision Makers extra time to look at evidence and make decisions

However, the concern is the repeated reference to rising costs of Disability related benefits and the impact on people who trying to live with PIP as a non-means tested benefit and be as independent as possible from the benefit ‘system’. Especially if the new benefit acts a passport to other services.

When it comes to making the process easier, merging means tested and non-means tested benefits hasn’t been a huge success in the past but there does seem to be a commitment to providing access to ‘advocacy’ and that’s a great start.

What people often need is help to join up the Health, Social Care and DWP benefit systems, and understand how they interact. For many, this is hugely frustrating and a barrier to getting the right advice and making good decisions. It isn’t always ‘advocacy’ that is needed but a way of working out what to do and when, who can help and how.

Our ‘Care Map’ helps adults to navigate the Health, Care and Benefit systems in England and we hope that we can add signposts to the new DWP advice and support services being implemented in the future because they are certainly not present currently.

Nicola Taylor
Author: Nicola Taylor

Nik is an experienced Care Funding and Benefit adviser and trainer. She has been helping people navigate the care and benefit maze for many years and is dedicated to supporting people to make good care choices and care funding decisions. The Author of several books, she has worked for Local and Central Government and supports both advisers and private clients with care funding and benefits advice and Care Navigator Reports.

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