Incapacity benefits are sickness and invalid's combined. The de facto dole in many cases. But never fear. The good news is the rate of growth is slowing "significantly".
That positive trend leads to this;
The percentage growth rate will drop by necessity if the absolute numbers climb at a steady rate, allowing a good news story to be spun from a bad news one.
Perhaps you should bear this in mind. In 1953, when the population of New Zealand was half of what it is now, there were only 13,000 people on these benefits and some were there as a consequence of WW11. The increase since has been nearly ten-fold. With improved medical technology and the advent of ACC, who would have predicted it?
(Postnote; If you follow my posts regularly you may wonder why I have argued previously that the Minister shouldn't continue to claim the growth rate was reducing. This is because tracking December to December there was an increase during 2006).