Author Topic: First I've heard of this- Are PIP assessments going to be videoed ?  (Read 1420 times)

JLR2

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1731
Edit to add more info to title - Sunshine :-)

In a week when the PM has spoken at the despatch box during PMQs of benefit claimants who have, for whatever reason, contacted her to tell of just how wonderful Universal Credit is for them I have just learnt of the following-

''Minister gives assurances on disability funding and assessments
 
Esther McVey, the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, has assured me that PIP assessment concerns are taken seriously and assessors are held to account. I have had a number of constituency cases where initial assessments have been woeful and overturned on appeal. The assessments are carried out by people employed by Capita. I met Esther to discuss the cases on Tuesday and she explained that from now on all assessments would be videoed to ensure disabled people get the benefits they need.

 Repeat assessments for people with severe lifelong conditions will be reduced to a minimum of every ten years.'' Rt Hon Anna Soubry MP  (my change of colour)

Pity May hadn't had a word with Soubry before she opened her mouth at PMQs as it is clear even Soubry's constituency is experiencing problems albeit in the cases referred to she is talking of Pip assessments. I was also a bit surprised to hear that according to McVey all Pip assessments are to be video recorded and that those with life long conditions are not to face reassessments within a period of 10 years, anyone else hear of this?
« Last Edit: 15 Sep 2018 02:16PM by Sunshine Meadows »

JLR2

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1731

Monic1511

  • Moderator Welfare Rights
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2346
Re: First I've heard of this
« Reply #2 on: 14 Sep 2018 09:01PM »
I hear lots of stuff but hadn't heard that PIP assessments were to be videoed automatically - popped over to rightsnet and this is the headline

Work and Pensions Committee welcomes government’s positive tone about improving the PIP and ESA assessment process
However, the pace of change in respect of the recommendations the government has accepted is ‘painfully slow’, says Committee chair

The Work and Pensions Committee has welcomed the government’s more positive tone for improving the personal independence payment (PIP) and employment and support allowance (ESA) assessment process.

In its second response to the Committee’s inquiry into PIP and ESA Assessments - in which the Committee found a ‘pervasive lack of trust’ has undermined the operation of PIP and ESA assessments - the government sets out progress it has made towards meeting the Committee’s recommendations since it made its first response in April 2018.

In relation to the Committee’s concerns about problems with mandatory reconsiderations and appeals, the government says that it has -
introduced a form (CRMR1), available for download from gov.uk, for claimants who prefer to dispute a decision in writing;

introduced key 'must do' actions for case managers to ensure that they review evidence that was available at the initial decision stage as well as checking with the claimant as to whether further evidence has since become available;

introduced active case management with a view to ensuring that case managers get the 'right information at the right time' - to include contacting the claimant to explain what information is required to progress their case; and
carried out work to consider feedback about appeals gathered by DWP Presenting Officers, and is also running tests to explore different ways it can improve evidence gathering and the quality of decision making.

In addition, responding to the Committee’s concerns about the difficulty and distress that claimants can experience filling in PIP and ESA application forms, the government confirms its intention to commission external contractors to conduct independent research. It also sets out the steps it has taken to improve the ESA application process - by identifying claimants with alternative format needs at the point of claim and by producing an easy read version of the ESA40 welcome leaflet.

As regards the Committee’s call to address errors in assessment reports, the government says -
‘It should be noted that assessment reports are not, and can never be, verbatim records of what the claimant says during a consultation. Health professionals are not required to capture everything that is said during a consultation. Instead, they listen objectively and capture information that clearly explains the functional impact of the claimants reported conditions. However, all claimants should receive high quality, objective and accurate assessments and the Department strives to achieve this.’

Commenting on the government’s response, chair of the Committee Frank Field said -
‘There is a welcome change of tone in this response which seems to finally begin to acknowledge the deep distress and difficulty PIP and ESA claimants have experienced.

But that counts for little when it still refuses to engage with the huge problems in quality control - the reports riddled with errors and omissions, the huge numbers of overturned decisions, the outsourced contractors that rarely or never hit their targets - and when the pace of the change it is making is painfully slow.

Claiming a benefit to which you are legitimately entitled should never be a humiliating, distressing experience. Government must move now, faster, to make this right.’

For further details see Claiming benefits should never be a humiliating, distressing experience from parliament.uk


sorry was at appeals today and that leaves me brain dead for a while afterwards

Other headlines are
65 per cent of ESA ‘fit for work’ decisions overturned at appeal in quarter to March 2018
New DWP statistics also show that, in July 2018, only 22 per cent of decisions overturned at mandatory reconsideration stage

and

71 per cent of PIP and ESA appeals overturned in favour of claimants
New Ministry of Justice statistics also highlight that a general increase in the overturn rate of appeals has been driven by a six percentage point increase in successful PIP appeals
« Last Edit: 14 Sep 2018 09:03PM by Monic1511 »

JLR2

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1731
Re: First I've heard of this
« Reply #3 on: 14 Sep 2018 09:15PM »
One issue that's rattling around in my head is when someone is in a situation where they are being interviewed/facing questions in a Police station there are two copied made of the Police recording one of which is made available (least I think it is)  for any defence solicitor of the person being questioned so I wonder if someone being videoed will be given a copy of their PiP assessment video?

Another thought would be when the video recording begins?  I'm wondering will the PiP video recording begin from when the person to be assessed leaves their car in the assessment venue's car park or the waiting room or only from the moment they have arrived in the assessment room itself?  I'm wondering this as many of my pervious assessments have included assessors comments regarding how I made my way back to my car following my assessment.

Another wee sneaky thing about what I have learnt tonight is in regards to the 2 year extension to the Atos/Capita contract, that has hardly seen any mention in the media which given their records is rather odd.

JLR2

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1731
Re: First I've heard of this
« Reply #4 on: 14 Sep 2018 09:25PM »
I've just copied over this,

''Ken Butler, welfare benefits adviser at Disability Rights UK, said the video recording announcement was “unexpected”.

He also had questions about how it would work.

He said: “It raises more questions than answers – will all parts of an examination be videoed? Will videoing be compulsory, or can a disabled person ask to opt-out? Will home visits be recorded? Will copies of videoed assessments be automatically given to claimants?

“Some disabled people may not be happy to be video recorded.”

He added: “It’s not clear why the option to audio record PIP assessments has not been introduced instead.

“This might be acceptable to more disabled people and be easier to introduce more quickly.

“For example, we were told by Capita when it took over the PIP contract that it had the immediate ability to audio record all its assessments, including home visits.” ''

Which tends to suggest, to me, that others are asking similar questions about when these recording begin and end.

Another point is,

''Slater said this week that the announcement on video-recording “appears to be good news and hopefully will solve the problem of inaccurate medical reports and bad decisions”.

But he said he had concerns about confidentiality, particularly around how the videos would be stored, who would be allowed to access them and what DWP would be able to use them for.

He said that current guidance states that assessors cannot use information in their report that has been told to them in confidence during a PIP assessment.

But the current consent form for audio recordings says that “DWP may request a copy of the recording at any time”, without the form saying who at DWP and for what purpose.'' Slater works with or for the DNS.

I can't help but feel every claimant should be entitled to leave any videoed assessment with a copy of the recording at the time of assessment and not told they might receive one in the post. Given this government's history and that of the private assessing companies involved I would not put it past them to doctor recordings.


Monic1511

  • Moderator Welfare Rights
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2346
Re: First I've heard of this
« Reply #5 on: 14 Sep 2018 09:36PM »
A police station is an interview under caution so DWP are never going to accept the comparison with recording of a PIP or ESA assessment.  As for when it starts its likely to be when the assessor moves back in to the room and says to the person I will now turn on the recording.   In one way I don't see the point as the appeal tribunals will not sit and watch the assessment and then make a decision, nor will the decision maker watch the recording.
If you say the assessment being videoed is to prove accuracy I don't see it working, we all watch the same TV but come away with different impressions.  Yes you can say I never said that - prove I did but that just irritates the appeal panels - they want to know why you haven't complained about inaccuracy months earlier

The only time the video is likely to be seen will be in a complaints process or by the agencies training staff etc.


The Scottish government is getting control of PIP and wants local practitioners to do the medicals - fine if you have a good relationship with your GP but we have several who despise their clients - bi polar people parked on methadone with no access to mental health treatment or assessment.  GP's are overwhelmed with medical work never mind doing dwp assessments

signing off for the night  >zzz<

JLR2

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1731
Re: First I've heard of this
« Reply #6 on: 14 Sep 2018 09:40PM »
Just found this little snippet,

''In order to protect claimants from security risks and potential loss of personal data, we only make e-mail available as a channel of application to disabled PIP claimants that are unable to use the telephone independently, or read our letters and for whom other alternative formats are unsuitable. Before a PIP claimant applies through e-mail, they are informed of the potential security risks.''

taken from, - https://publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201719/cmselect/cmworpen/986/98602.htm

Say's to me the government are well aware of there being on-line security threats, so why then are they so insistent on claims being made on-line?

Monic, given evidence gathered during a WCA/PiP assessment can be used where a claimant is accused of benefit fraud I would think it right that a claimant has a copy of such recordings.

JLR2

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1731
Re: First I've heard of this
« Reply #7 on: 14 Sep 2018 09:51PM »
Yet another wee thought, under the previous non videoed assessments it was down to the assessor to write his/her report and that would, in theory at least, be based on what s/he learnt in the course of the assessment. With a video recording of an assessment might there be a chance that rather than the assessment being based on the assessment assessor's opinion alone, it is put before other assessors, say 2 or 3 assessors, where they decide between them what they think should be the claimant's assessment outcome?  Just a thought.

Sunshine Meadows

  • Global Moderator
  • Super Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7745
Good thread with a lot to read  >tah< I am not able to read everything on the links but all the same it is good to have them easily accessible.

I agree with Monic that when people view the same piece of video they wont necessarily make the same conclusions about what happened and why? However, as long as there is an opt out option it might make some claimants feel less upset about the assessment process and more confident about the outcome.

JLR,

What you said about the car park is interesting because my understanding is our assessments start as soon as we leave our homes eg can we manage the journey. I am pretty sure when I had my first ESA assessment the assessor watched me from the point of arriving in the car, getting out of the car and into the building. ALso I have mentioned noticing a large floor two wave mirror in the waiting before and most of us know things live how long you can site in a hard chair were being assessed as you waited.

Monic ,

Quote
The Scottish government is getting control of PIP and wants local practitioners to do the medicals - fine if you have a good relationship with your GP but we have several who despise their clients - bi polar people parked on methadone with no access to mental health treatment or assessment.  GP's are overwhelmed with medical work never mind doing dwp assessments

Good point  >star< GPs already have patients who end up talking to them about their worry over their upcoming PIP or ESA claim. I have found myself asking about it even though I have yet to be called in for the PIP transfer.

JLR2

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1731
Hi Sunshine, my GP has a habit of asking me following my appointment ending when I'm heading off to Berlin, I hope he's not annoyed about my visiting Berlin.

Sunshine Meadows

  • Global Moderator
  • Super Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7745
I dont see why your GP would be annoyed about you going to Berlin. It is more likely that it is just a personal detail he knows about you and comes to at the end of the appointment.

 :-)

JLR2

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1731
I suppose I'm just that little bit wary about things. As Monic was saying, ''fine if you have a good relationship with your GP''  it would only take my GP to, on being asked to carry out a wca assessment on me, to think of how I have over recent years been visiting Berlin 3 times a year for 4 weeks when he is knocking his pan in at his surgery and only managing the regular holiday breaks most folk in work manage.

In a roundabout way my friend's father passing away will help me reduce my visits to Berlin as my friend will be able to visit Scotland. Mind you having said that the way I'm hearing things in the news about UK/European flights, travel between the UK/Europe and passport validity following Brexit things might get a bit complicated visitor visas and the like.

Monic1511

  • Moderator Welfare Rights
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2346
The problem with a claimant going holiday is (wrongly in my opinion) that dwp portray that person as able to cope with changes, able to mobilise and able to deal with people.  If you have any points for mobility or social skills don’t mention holidays.  One person had delusions that they were on pilgrimage to 4 European countries and had convinced the gp they were going, none of it was true but the panel refused to give additional points for going unfamiliar places as they believe the claimant had been all over Europe.

Information is great but be careful how it’s presented

JLR2

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1731
Thanks Monic for letting me know of this as it is something that had not crossed my mind. As best I can remember I ticked the no boxes on my forms when it came to getting around in unfamiliar places or journeys.

Don't know what it is but I find myself feeling low tonight. I keep looking around my house trying to think of how/where to start tidying up the place. Every flat surface has clutter on it and all I seem able to do is move the clutter from one place to another. It's a nice enough wee house but the lack of storage cupboards has me looking to see where next I bang some nails in the walls to put up more shelves. I'd really like to create more floor space, you know see what the colour of my carpet is >biggrin<

Given the amounts of A4 paper I have, letters from the DWP, NHS and various others I need a filing cabinet (floor to ceiling)  Apart from the paper work I've masses of electrical wiring, chargers from old devices and USB cables all thrown into wee boxes and under the bed or in drawers and of course I experience the same problem as everyone else, that of never being able to find these cables when I go looking for one.

Maybe I'll think of something tomorrow.

lankou

  • Charter Member
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2859
I have to admit to despairing at some of the comments on this thread. It has taken years of campaigning by many people, me, and organisations to get the DWP to acknowledge that a claimant has a right under the law to have benefit related medicals/assessments sound recorded and videod. That is a right, it will not be comulsory.
It reasons for the campaign were to stop claimaints being "verballed," and whoever does the medicals/assessments from lying in the report to the DWP.

Benefits and Work have just posted this. (live links at link.)

https://www.benefitsandwork.co.uk/news/3802-no-progress-on-pip-video-recording-or-claim-form-improvements

No progress on PIP video recording or claim form improvements
Category: Latest news
 Created: 17 September 2018
The House of Commons Work and Pensions Committee has slammed the government for failing to make any progress on video recording PIP assessments or improving PIP and ESA claim forms, arguing that the DWP “still refuses to engage with the huge problems” connected with claiming the benefits.

Back in June of this year we highlighted a statement by Sarah Newton, Minister of State for Disabled People, who claimed that the DWP were about to pilot the videoing of PIP assessments. The intention was to make “. . . video recording of the PIP assessment a standard part of the process . . . We will be piloting videoing the assessment with a view to then rolling this out across Great Britain.”

Though this decision appeared to have been made without any form of consultation with claimants and, judging from the comments we have received, many would prefer audio recordings only.

The government gave assurances that they would carry out this work following a highly critical report on PIP and ESA by the Commons committee, which was based in part on an unprecedented number of responses from claimants to a call for evidence.

However, three months on and there is no sign of the pilot even having begun.

Nor is there any evidence of work being done on make the claim forms for PIP or ESA any more user-friendly, another undertaking given by the minister.

Whilst welcoming the latest response from the government, which they have published on their website, the Work and Pensions Committee is now asking for a detailed progress report on these issues.

Frank Field MP, Chair of the Committee, said:

"There is a welcome change of tone in this response which seems to finally begin to acknowledge the deep distress and difficulty PIP& ESA claimants have experienced.

“But that counts for little when it still refuses to engage with the huge problems in quality control—the reports riddled with errors and omissions, the huge numbers of overturned decisions, the outsourced contractors that rarely or never hit their targets—and when the pace of the change it is making is painfully slow.

“Claiming a benefit to which you are legitimately entitled should never be a humiliating, distressing experience. Government must move now, faster, to make this right."

You can read more on the parliament website.