Analisi e Strumenti di Politica Sociale
June 1, 2013
Current policy debate is questioning the role and effectiveness of Attendance Allowance and concerns have been raised as to administrative inconsistencies in adjudications and severe delays in receipt after the onset of disability. This paper contributes to the debate by evaluating how Attendance Allowance works with reference to the extent of delays in first receipt. The empirical analysis is based on British Household Panel Data (bhps), offering repeated observations of the same individuals over time. The longitudinal dimension of bhps allows the observation of both the onset of disability and benefit receipt, and therefore the assessment of the extent of delay in first receipt. Moreover, the wide range of variables collected allows the analysis of how the timing of receipt is affected by socio-demographic and economic characteristics irrelevant to eligibility for the payment. Considerable delays in receipt emerge. The evidence of about four years elapsing on average between the onset of disability and receipt suggests that the timing of delivery represents a shortcoming of the current system. Moreover, the evidence of characteristics unrelated to eligibility influencing the extent of delays raises horizontal equity concerns as to the benefit assignment mechanism. Overall, there appears to be room for improvement of the current system of cash support for disability in older age with respect to timing of provision and to the involvement of health and social care professionals in outreaching those experiencing higher barriers to pursuing a timely claim. l supporto monetario agli anziani non autosufficienti: un’analisi empirica dei ritardi nell’accesso al programma Attendance Allowance nel Regno Unito
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