SWA - Diet Supplement


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Table of Contents

  1. Purpose of Diet Supplement
  2. Legislation
  3. Qualifying Conditions
  4. Diet Categories
  5. Amount of supplement
  6. Applications

1. Purpose of Diet Supplement

The Diet Supplement was discontinued for new applicants from 1 February 2014. However, people who were getting Diet Supplement before 1 February 2014 can continue to keep the payment for as long as they have a continued entitlement. A person is entitled to retain the Diet Supplement for a prescribed diet if they:

  • Continue to meet the medical requirements
  • Meet the conditions for Supplementary Welfare Allowance (SWA)
  • Have no increase in their means and
  • Are not in residential care

A Diet Supplement may be awarded in respect of a person or his/her qualified adult or child/children provided he/she satisfies certain conditions. Entitlement to a Diet Supplement is determined by the your local Department of Social Protection Office administering Supplementary Welfare Allowance. In determining entitlement to a Diet Supplement, consideration is given to the type of diet prescribed, the household income and whether the person in respect of whom the Diet Supplement is payable is an adult or a child.


2. Legislation

The legislative provisions on the current Diet Supplement are set out in Part 4 of the Social Welfare (Consolidated Supplementary Welfare Allowance) Regulations 2007 to 2014.


3. Qualifying Conditions

In order for a person to receive a Diet Supplement:

  • he/she must be eligible to receive SWA under the legislative provisions;
  • the diet must be one of those specified in the legislation (see list below);
  • he/she must have been certified as in need of a specific diet either by a hospital consultant or a hospital registrar. Where the claim is in respect of an adult or an 18 to 22 year old qualified child who needs a gluten free diet, the diet may be prescribed by a General Practitioner.

4. Diet Categories

Following a comprehensive report by the Irish Nutrition and Dietetic Institute in 2006, all previous prescribed diets are now contained within four categories of diet. Diet Supplements may be awarded in respect of a person or his/her qualified adult or child/children, provided that the diet is one of those listed below:

  1. low lactose, milk free diet,
  2. gluten free diet,
  3. high protein, high calorie diet,
  4. altered consistency (liquidised) diet.

A child is considered to be a qualified child of the claimant if: they are under 18 years of age and are dependant on the claimant for financial support; OR they are over the age of 18 years and under the age of 22 years, are in full-time education and are dependant on the claimant for financial support.


5. Amount of supplement

The amount of weekly Diet Supplement payable, other than to a qualified child, in respect of a prescribed diet shall be:

  • low lactose, milk free diet - €65.43
  • gluten free diet - €68.43
  • high protein, high calorie diet - €71.43
  • altered consistency (liquidised) diet - €74.93

less a proportion of the applicant's weekly income. Where the applicant is in receipt of a Social Welfare payment then the equivalent rate of that payment in 2007 should be used. This is set out in S.I. No. 44 of 2007.

In the case of a qualified child, the following Diet Supplements shall be paid:

  • low lactose, milk free diet - €3.50
  • gluten free diet - €6.50
  • high protein, high calorie diet - €9.50
  • altered consistency (liquidised) diet - €13.00

The amount of any benefit or assistance paid in respect of a qualified child is not assessed as income when calculating a Diet Supplement in respect of an adult. The Minister may vary from time to time the amount of supplement payable.


6. Applications

The diet supplement was discontinued for new applicants from 1 February 2014.

Last modified:06/02/2012
 

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