Media Release: New pilot to streamline Disability Support Pension claims

1 June 2017

The Hon Alan Tudge MP

Minister for Human Services

New claimants for the Disability Support Pension will benefit from an improved and more streamlined assessment process.

The changes, which are being piloted over the next month, aim to make the Disability Support Pension claim process clearer, simpler and faster for claimants and their treating doctors.

Currently around 110,000 people apply for DSP each year but only a quarter are actually eligible. This pilot aims to help those who are manifestly eligible get on the DSP faster, and also reduce the processing time for those who are not eligible but may be eligible for other payments.

The pilot aims to strengthen and streamline the assessment process by:

  • Providing clearer information to claimants and their treating doctors about the evidence required to be eligible for Disability Support Pension;
  • Conducting earlier and more thorough expert assessments of medical evidence to fast-track claims for people who are clearly unable to work, and identify earlier those who are clearly not eligible for DSP; and
  • Improving the targeting of Job Capacity Assessments to claimants who require a comprehensive medical assessment, and reducing requests for additional medical evidence.

Importantly, the new processes will streamline procedures for claimants who are likely to be manifestly eligible and expedite their claims.

This will mean a reduction in the time taken to assess claims for people with severe illness, injury or disability and little or no capacity to work. 

Minister for Human Services, Alan Tudge said this pilot is another example of how the Government is streamlining the administration of welfare payments.

“Disability Support Pension is a vital support payment for some of the most vulnerable people in the community,” Minister Tudge said.

“We also understand that some people need support to help them gather the evidence required to support a claim.

“This pilot will introduce real, tangible benefits to ensure people with disability are able to access support more quickly and easily.”

If the pilot proves successful the Department of Human Services will consider permanently implementing these changes in 2017-18.