Mental health as a reason for claiming incapacity benefit--a comparison of national and local trends

Brown, J., Hanlon, P.W., Turok, I., Webster, D. , Arnott, J. and Macdonald, E.B. (2009) Mental health as a reason for claiming incapacity benefit--a comparison of national and local trends. Journal of Public Health, 31(1), pp. 74-80. (doi:10.1093/pubmed/fdn098)

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Abstract

<p> <b>Background</b> Getting incapacity benefit (IB) claimants into work has become a focus for policy makers. Strategies to help this group depend on an understanding of the reasons for claiming benefit at a local level where variations from a national strategy may be needed. </p> <p> <b>Methods</b> Data supplied by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) was analysed to establish reasons for claiming benefit in Scotland and Glasgow between 2000 and 2007. </p> <p> <b>Results</b> There has been a continuing rise in mental health diagnosis and a corresponding fall in musculoskeletal diagnosis during this period. More people were claiming because of mental health problems in Glasgow than in Scotland. Also those with a poor employment history (credits-only claimants) are more likely to claim IB because of a mental health problem. This study has shown a breakdown into 25 categories those claiming IB because of a mental health problem. </p> <p> <b>Conclusion</b> DWP data can be used to provide important insights into the trends in reasons for claiming IB, in particular those claiming because of mental health problems. This study also highlighted the growing importance of problems caused by alcohol and drug-abuse claimants, a subset of the mental health category. DWP data should be used at a local as well as a national level to guide and evaluate interventions to help this vulnerable group. </p>

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Turok, Professor Ivan and MacDonald, Professor Ewan and Hanlon, Professor Phil and Webster, Dr David and Brown, Dr Judith
Authors: Brown, J., Hanlon, P.W., Turok, I., Webster, D., Arnott, J., and Macdonald, E.B.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > Public Health
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Medicine, Dentistry & Nursing > Centre for Population and Health Sciences
Journal Name:Journal of Public Health
Publisher:Oxford University Press
ISSN:1741-3842
ISSN (Online):1741-3850
Published Online:30 October 2008

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