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Fast-tracked access to benefits for people with terminal illness expanded

Tori_ScopeTori_Scope Posts: 5,002

Scope community team

Changes announced today confirm that the current Special Rules for Terminal Illness which fast-track benefit applications for those with a terminal diagnosis of six months is to be replaced with a new 12-month, end of life definition.

The move will ensure that people in the final year of their life will receive vital financial support quicker than they can do at present and at the highest rate through revised Special Rules.

Minister for Disabled People Justin Tomlinson said:

"Being diagnosed with a terminal illness is devastating and this change will increase much needed support for people who are nearing the end of their lives.

The new 12-month approach will ensure people get the financial help they need as quickly as possible in the most challenging of times. We have carefully considered the best approach and I am grateful to everyone who has contributed to our work in reaching this outcome."

Under the updated rules, clinicians still have discretion and will be supported by a realistic and straightforward definition, which aligns with current NHS practice.

Ministers plan to implement the 12-month end-of-life approach across five DWP benefits, beginning with Universal Credit and Employment Support Allowance next year and Attendance Allowance, Disability Living Allowance and Personal Independence Payment when parliamentary time allows.

It follows a DWP evaluation which heard the views of people nearing the end of their lives, their families and friends, the organisations supporting them and the clinicians involved in their care.

Could this change affect you? What do you think of the change? 

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Replies

  • janer1967janer1967 Member Posts: 11,160 Disability Gamechanger
    It doesn't affect me but I think it is a good change and much needed one

    The last thing someone at end of life should have to go through is the lengthy process which in some cases is taking nearly a year to complete 

    So if someone currently has 9 month life expectancy they could have passed away by the time it is processed 
  • rubin16rubin16 Member Posts: 92 Pioneering
    I think its a good start and a step in the direction. Last thing people need when they have such devasting news is having more stress and anxiety waiting for the system to give them financial support.

    It just should of come much sooner though to be honest, and just shows the government are still behind the times abit. Lets hope for more and better changes in the future.
  • calcotticalcotti Member Posts: 2,173 Pioneering
    Ministers plan to implement the 12-month end-of-life approach across five DWP benefits, beginning with Universal Credit and Employment Support Allowance next year and Attendance Allowance, Disability Living Allowance and Personal Independence Payment when parliamentary time allows.
    What I cannot get my head around is the practical implications of having, for a period, two definitions running in parallel depending on which benefit is being applied for. 
    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.
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