Please can you advise of the current number of mp's who claim the assistance and if they have to undergo any form of assessment
IPSA holds the information that you request.
Under the MPs' Scheme of Business Costs and Expenses ('the Scheme'), Disability Assistance may be claimed by any MP for necessary additional expenditure incurred in the performance of an MP's parliamentary functions which is reasonably attributable to a disability of an MP, a staff member, a job applicant or constituents visiting the office or surgery. This usually takes the form of necessary adjustments to an MP's office which are required as a result of an MP (or their staff member) having a disability (e.g. a ramp being installed).
The Assistance available under the Scheme covers specific costs incurred by the MP or their staff in the exercise of their parliamentary functions (i.e. to ensure they are able to do their jobs). It does not cover personal costs incurred by the MP in their private life outside of Parliament and is not comparable to Disability Living Allowance (DLA) or Personal Independence Payments (PIPs).
The full rules regarding Disability Assistance (and what it can cover) can be found at Chapter Ten of the Scheme, a copy of which can be found at the following address: http://parliamentarystandards.org.uk/IPSAMPs/Scheme.
Due to the sensitive nature of the topic, we do not publish individual claims relating to disability, but we do publish an annual aggregate which can be found at the following address: http://www.parliamentary-standards.org.uk/AnnualisedData.aspx.
At the time of responding, 24 MPs were eligible to claim Disability Assistance. In many instances, it will be a staff member (or another individual) who has a disability and not the MP themselves; the figure of 24 includes necessary costs incurred by the MP’s staff members, job applicants and constituents visiting the MP’s office or surgery.
It is not always necessary for MPs or staff to undergo an assessment of their disability in order to determine what reasonable adjustments are required.