Sunday, September 04, 2011

Duplicate figures puzzling

Back in March 2009, under the OIA, MSD supplied the following information:

On a sickness or invalids benefit with a primary incapacity of substance abuse, at end December 2008:

Sickness 4,190
Invalid 1,648


I recently asked the same question to track any trend and received the following table:




Two and a half years later I find it remarkable that the total for those on the invalid's benefit is exactly the same and for those on the sickness benefit only 17 more. (No, MSD didn't just send me the same table twice).

Multiple factors would lead to an expectation of increased numbers. More work-place drug testing, more unemployment, apparently greater alcohol abuse among young people are three. I know there are at least two GPs who read this blog who might like to comment.

One would almost suspect a quota.

3 comments:

S.Beast said...

That IS strange. If anything the numbers should show lower numbers on the IB (Work and Income has been on a drive to shift people from the IB to the SB....saves around $30/week each person).

macdoctor said...

My impression is that SB numbers are unchanged, but exactly the same IS a little strange...

big news said...

It'll be more than a little strange of the IB numbers were exactly the same in all age bands - are they?