HC Deb 23 November 1916 vol 87 c1646W

asked the Comptroller of the Household, as representing the National Health Insurance Commissioners, whether he is aware that considerable hardship is being experienced by insured persons in consequence of the delay on the part of some approved societies in making payment of sickness benefit; and, if this is the case, whether he will take action to cause approved societies found to be in default to carry out their obligations to their members more expeditiously?


An approved society, before paying sickness benefit, must be satisfied that benefit is properly payable. I have no reason to think that there is any serious delay on the part of societies in dealing with current benefit work in cases where the claims are supported by the necessary evidence, but if my hon. Friend has the case of any particular society in mind and will let me have particulars I will make inquiries and take such steps as may be necessary. It should be borne in mind that societies are at present working at a serious disadvantage by reason of the withdrawal for military service of the greater part, and in some cases the whole, of their experienced staff, and that the necessary inquiries into a member's claim for benefit may, therefore, be less expeditiously completed than is the case under normal conditions.