Skip to main content

Health assessments for benefits: Work and Pensions Committee launches inquiry

27 September 2021

The Work and Pensions Committee has today launched an inquiry into the effectiveness of the application and assessment process for health-related benefits, amid continuing concerns about the problems being experienced by people making claims.

The inquiry will cover benefits paid to those people affected by long-term health conditions or disabilities, including Personal Independent Payment (PIP) and Employment and Support Allowance (ESA).

The committee has previously heard that the application and assessment processes for such benefits are often flawed, with a majority of people who appeal against decisions made by the DWP being successful.

The DWP has announced its intention to reform the assessment processes for PIP and ESA through the Health Transformation Programme.

Chair's comment

Rt Hon Stephen Timms MP, Chair of the Work and Pensions Committee, said:

“When the great majority of appeals against DWP decisions are being won at tribunal, it is clear that there are some fundamental flaws in the assessment process that urgently need fixing. People with long-term health conditions and disabilities should not have to go through the stress in terms of time, cost and worry of battling with the Department just to access the support that they need.

“The Government seems to have acknowledged that there is a pressing need for a transformation in the way it treats people applying for these benefits. Our inquiry will help to inform what it needs to do to bring to an end the unjustified fight people too often face when trying to access the much-needed support they are entitled to.”

Call for evidence

The Committee would like to hear views on the questions included in the call for evidence. You don’t have to answer all of the questions. You can respond on behalf of an organisation, or as an individual.

The deadline for submissions is 17 December 2021.

The call for evidence is available in accessible formats.

If you require a different format, or if you need us to make reasonable adjustments to enable you to send us your views, please contact us via email on or call 020 7219 8976/text relay 18001 020 7219 8976.

Further information

Image: CC0