16 April 2024

The DWP Personal Independence Payments (PIP) conditions list and how it’s used

We answer key questions from members about the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) Personal Independence Payments (PIP) conditions coding list.

A recently shared screenshot of the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) Personal Independence Payments (PIP) conditions coding list has got our members talking. There are some key questions from our members around how this list is used and how assessments are made in regards to eye conditions. 

A medical adviser at the DWP told us that people who apply for PIP undergo a functional assessment which considers the effect a person’s condition(s) has on their daily life, rather than only focusing on the health condition or impairment itself. The assessment looks at an individual’s ability to carry out a series of everyday tasks that are essential to living an independent life, such as the ability to prepare, cook and eat food, dress and undress, or plan and follow journeys. A person will be scored depending on how their condition(s) impacts these activities. 

For example, when assessing vision and the ability to read, a person will score 0 points if they can read and understand basic and complex written information either unaided or using spectacles or contact lenses. However they will score 2 points if they need to use an aid or appliance, other than spectacles or contact lenses, to be able to read or understand either basic or complex written information.

The list of visual conditions that has been shared on social media is taken from the DWP data standard. This is a code list of conditions that someone applying for PIP could include in their application. The list is used for administrative and coding purposes, with the health professional who carries out the assessment choosing the relevant conditions from the code list. There is no automatic entitlement related to specific clinical conditions in the list, and the condition list is not used directly in decision-making for entitlement to PIP.

PIP is available for people living in England, Wales and Northern Ireland (people living in Scotland are eligible for Adult Disability Payment).  

The College of Optometrists exists for our members. We are here to help and guide you through every stage of your career; as well as being your voice to governments, national health services and other significant bodies; and promoting your expertise to employers, patients and the general public. 

Get in touch

Tag us on social media:

Photo credit | William - stock.adobe.com