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Common Health Questions

NHS Choices - How do I register as disabled?

How do I register as disabled?

As there is no longer a national register of disabled people, technically you don't need to register as disabled.

However, many local authorities do provide help and support for disabled people, so it's worth contacting your local authority to find out how they can help you.

Blue Badge parking permits

To apply for a Blue Badge parking permit, you need to contact your local council. 

The Blue Badge Scheme is for people with severe mobility problems. Blue Badge holders are able to park close to where they need to go. The scheme is managed by local authorities who deal with applications and issue Blue Badges.

GOV.UK has more details about the Blue Badge scheme, including information about applying for a Blue Badge.

Registering as blind or partially sighted

Visit your GP or optician if you're having problems with your sight. They can refer you to a consultant ophthalmologist (eye specialist) who can assess whether you qualify to register as sight-impaired (partially sighted) or severely sight-impaired (blind).

If you qualify, the ophthalmologist will complete a Certificate of Vision Impairment. They will send it to your GP and your local social services department, who will contact you to find out what help and advice you need.

If you're registered with your local authority as blind or partially sighted, you may be entitled to travel concessions, such as a Disabled Person's Railcard. If you're registered as blind, you may also be entitled to other concessions, such as free public transport and a discount on your TV licence.

The Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) provides further information about registering your sight loss.

Registering as deaf

Visit your GP if you're having hearing problems. They can refer you to a hearing specialist.

You can also contact social services at your local authority for help and advice about the range of services available. You don't have to register to do this. However, registering with your local authority as deaf may entitle you to travel concessions, such as a Disabled Person's Railcard.

Action on Hearing Loss has information about benefits and services for people with hearing loss.

Disability benefits

Not everyone with a disability can claim disability benefits. However, if your condition affects your daily living activities, you should apply.

The Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for working-age adults with a disability has now been replaced by a new benefit: the Personal Independence Payment (PIP). As with DLA, PIP is designed to help you meet some of the extra costs you may have due to a long-term health condition or disability.

You can only make a new claim for DLA if you're claiming for a child under 16. This is known as DLA for children.

Attendance Allowance is a tax-free benefit for people aged 65 or over who need help with personal care because they're physically or mentally disabled.

See GOV.UK for more information about DLA and Attendance Allowance, plus what to do if you become disabled.

Scope, the national disability charity, has more information on benefits and other financial help.

The NHS Care and Support guide provides further information on benefits for carers.

Read more answers to questions about caring, carers and long-term conditions.

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