Interesting read from the Guardian's pages (Re-PIP)

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JLR2

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https://www.theguardian.com/society/2019/jan/15/disability-benefits-reform-costs-government-4bn-in-extra-welfare-payments

''Ministers claimed, when the system was launched, that a programme of rolling medical assessments by three private sector contractors would ensure payments were only made for as long as a claimant needed them.'' Or had died whilst waiting to get through the appeals process.

The way I read it in effect the government's idea was rather than waiting for a claimant to report any changes in their situation (health/disability) they'd (the DWP) constantly reassess claimants virtually month by month. I'm surprised they didn't introduce daily phone calls asking, 'how are you today?  any better?'

I guess the DWP decided they'd wear down claimants with a loop of assessment, refusal, appeal process and then start all over again with another assessment, refusal and so on.
« Last Edit: 15 Jan 2019 09:18PM by JLR2 »

Monic1511

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transcript
Changes to the disability benefits system that has caused huge hardship to some of the country’s most vulnerable people has cost the government more than £4bn more in extra welfare payments than ministers estimated.

The Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR), the Treasury’s independent forecasting unit, said predictions by the Department for Work and Pensions dramatically under-estimated the costs of rolling out the personal independent payments (PIP) system, which began to replace disability living allowance (DLA) in 2013.

A saving of £2bn was expected by 2018, but that has since been revised to an over-spend by £1.5bn to £2bn, leaving an estimated £4.2bn gap in the public finances.

The figures are expected to bolster calls by disability groups for an overhaul of the PIP system, which has been described as a “vicious attack” on disabled people. MPs on the work and pensions select committee concluded an investigation last year that found the assessments of claimants by private sector contractors to be “shoddy and error strewn”, leading to hundreds of thousands of successful appeals.

One charity, Parkinson’s UK, complained that about a quarter of people living with the disease in Britain had lost some or all of their support after benefit reassessments, only to have the payments reinstated on appeal.

The OBR said the growing number of appeals was one of several causes of the unexpected rise in costs. It said the system had also come under pressure from legal challenges, which had altered the scope of the scheme, and an increase in claimants, especially of working age adults when this group was due to see a large fall.

The OBR said: “The government assumed initially that PIP would be rolled out by 2015-16 and that it would cost 20% less than DLA would have done. In fact, by 2017-18 it was costing around 15 to 20% more, with rollout only around two-thirds complete.”

Ministers claimed, when the system was launched, that a programme of rolling medical assessments by three private sector contractors would ensure payments were only made for as long as a claimant needed them.

Critical of the system run by public sector staff, the DWP expected that independent medical reassessments would lead to a dramatic fall in the number of people staying on benefits.

A report in 2016 by the OBR described the PIP system as “a failure” after it reduced the forecasts of cost savings to 5%. In its latest report it said the inability to achieve savings, which were now nearer -20%, had pushed its forecasting of the welfare budget significantly off track.

Frank Field, who chairs the Commons work and pensions committee, said: “DWP told us PIP would save taxpayers money and introduce a fair, transparent assessment process. Today’s report lays bare that it has achieved neither. PIP will cost a fifth more than the system it replaces: a sorry situation largely thanks to DWP’s failure to cost the reform accurately before bringing it in.

“Far worse, though, is that the PIP assessments are riddled with repeated and serious errors and have caused untold anxiety and misery for far too many of the people who rely on the benefit to live. The cost of those mistakes is also knocked forward into the tribunal system, not back to the contractors who made them.”




Spindrift

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It is as though the people creating the theories on which the decision to create PIP and it's set up did not bother to understand that many of the measures supposedly taken to reduce inequalities in the UK failed. For example, despite all that has been said about Reasonable Adjustments at work many disabled employers can still find themselves out of work because of the stupidity or managers and discrimination in the workplace. If we can't earn enough money to live we are forced to fall back onto the welfare state. I know PIP is not an income based benefit but I believe one of the reasons more people appealed decisions was because financially they had no choice. In my opinion there must have been people who knew using private companies such as Capita would get shoddy results but they assumed they could get away with it. They did not reckon with how the internet can empower people to stand up for themselves and others thereby increasing the number of appeals made and also how successful those appeals were.

Quoting from the article

Quote
“PIP is designed to focus support on people with the greatest needs and that’s happening, with 31% of people getting the highest level of support, compared to 15% under DLA,” she said.
This may be true but the levels of existing poverty, cuts in social services and ongoing discrimination mean anyone who does actually meet the criteria for Personal Independence Payment PIP has to keep fighting for their right to it. PIP is not so much enhancing our lives as making our lives bearable. In my case it allowed me to get a mortgage and pay for the house I live in and for me to put the central heating on in winter time.

JLR2

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''PIP is designed to focus support on people with the greatest needs and that’s happening, with 31% of people getting the highest level of support, compared to 15% under DLA,” she said.''

31% and 15 % Of which cohorts?  Unless folk know exactly who it is the DWP are referring to in these comparisons it is hard to say they are true comparisons.

31% of say 100 is obviously 31 claimants but 15% of 1000 is 150, all too often we have seen exactly how deceitful this government has been with figures. Could it be when the DWP make reference to the 31% they're really talking about the 31% who were so much into the 'greatest needs' category that they died within 6 months of their benefit claim?

Put simply I do not trust the DWP nor for that matter the government. Honesty for Tories is looked on as a serious weakness and where it is found in would be Tory electoral candidates it is stamped on hard.

SashaQ

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31% and 15 % Of which cohorts? 

Excellent point...

Definitely not a like for like comparison given that there was High, Middle and Low Rate Care for DLA, and High and Low Rate Mobility so the High-High combination is statistically less likely in that system than in the PIP one with High/Low for both components...

Spindrift

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Thank you I had not thought of either of those flaws in what I quoted.
>star<

JLR2

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Spindrift, the DWP hopes no one thinks about these possible flaws in their figures. Then again there has been a particular phrase creeping into political dictionary since Donald Trump's election in the States, the phrase being, ''I do not recognise your/these figures''. No matter the subject whenever a minister or whatever is faced with figures which do not suit their Party's argument they simply  reply with the 'I don't recognise...' and then totally ignore the question.

Be great wouldn't it a bank robber is accused of robbing £500,000 from a bank and has the charges dropped as there is a dispute about the actual amount stolen >lol<

Spindrift

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Quote
Be great wouldn't it a bank robber is accused of robbing £500,000 from a bank and has the charges dropped as there is a dispute about the actual amount stolen >lol<
LOL  >lol<

On the edge

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I'm probably the only one who thinks the Guardian is a load of patronising old tosh but...