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Veterans’ charities and academics questioned on health assessments for veterans claiming benefits

25 March 2022

The Work and Pensions Committee examines whether the current benefits system is up to the task of assessing the mental and physical health of veteran claimants.

Witnesses

Wednesday 30 March 2022

At 10.15am

  • Caroline Cooke, Head of Policy, Forces in Mind Trust
  • The Royal British Legion
  • Philip Martin, Research Fellow, University of Salford

MPs are expected to explore whether the current system prioritises physical over mental health. The Committee may ask about reports that assessors’ understanding of veterans’ experiences and conditions, such as PTSD, is limited and about whether the current process may actually exacerbate existing mental health conditions.

Possible solutions, such as the presence of a ‘disability expert’ during assessments, specialist training on military culture for assessors, or a general support service aimed at disability and incapacity benefit claimants are likely to be discussed.  

This fourth session of the Health assessments for benefits inquiry will hear from veterans’ charities and academics. The inquiry was launched in September amidst reports that the application and assessment processes for benefits are often flawed, with most appeals against DWP decisions succeeding.

Further information

Image: MOD