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Illness Benefit Data

Dáil Éireann Debate, Thursday - 18 October 2018

Thursday, 18 October 2018

Questions (327)

Catherine Murphy

Question:

327. Deputy Catherine Murphy asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the number of claimants in receipt of illness benefit who were negatively impacted upon by the issues in the recent illness benefit system roll-out; the number of late payments that were made; the number of weeks' payments that were late; the way in which she plans to communicate with impacted applicants; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [42846/18]

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Written answers (Question to Employment)

My Department recently moved to new IT system and this has impacted on payments to some Illness Benefit customers. The transition from the old to the new system has involved moving from a payment in arrears system to a real-time system for Illness Benefit.

The Department acknowledges that this move has caused difficulties for some customers, leading to a large volume of calls to its helpline and delays in responding to calls. In order to address this, the Department is taking urgent action to deploy additional staff to manage customer calls.

I want to assure IB customers that where issues have arisen, that these customers will be paid the correct amount for the period of their illness - as certified by their GP. Any customer who has an urgent financial need can apply to the Department's Community Welfare Service to receive an interim payment. Customers in these circumstances should get in touch with their local Intreo Centre.

My Department is working hard to resolve the payment issues as quickly as possible.

I trust this clarifies the matter for the Deputy.

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