Written evidence from Anonymous (HAB0112)

 I am informed that health professionals with regards the Independent Assessment Services (IAS) do not have to be experts in a claimants particular condition although should have access to expert medical advice. Although it is a requirement that HPs should have access to expert medical advice it is often not sought and advice to the DWP is often made in judgemental opinions by HP's who most of the time have no knowledge about the claimants condition.

For example..

A previous assessment by IAS had advised the DWP that it was unlikely for any changes with my restrictions due to the longevity of my conditions. In a Reassessment IAS advised the DWP that I choose to allow my brother to make budgeting decisions for me rather than this being a necessity. This statement contradicted my medical history, previous assessment, and PIP questionnaire which shows lack of knowledge in my conditions that has no known cure. It also evidence that the HP had not sought to seek medical advice before advising the DWP.

 In another assessment a HP had recorded in his consultation report that I had struggled with some of the descriptors, yet advised the DWP that I had the ability to complete all descriptors unaided which contradicted his own findings which did not match the chosen descriptor and had not followed PIP Guidelines. This resulted in being refused entitlement in later response from IAS it was then said that at the time of this assessment a reliable summary of my restrictions could not be identified. This is evidence that the advice given to the DWP previously was inaccurate and is also evidence that procedures had not been followed

 In another two assessments IAS said that at the time there was no medical evidence of my said conditions, so advised the DWP that I had the ability to complete all descriptors unaided, without any justified evidenced based explanation, despite that this advice had contradicted my medical history, PIP questionnaire and medical evidence that was available at the time and evidence This is evidence of the incompetent of IAS

 The Independent Assessment Services are paid highly for their incompetence and inaccurate reports, so why would they change when they are rewarded for their incompetent and lack of following proceedures.

 PIP Guidelines/proceedures advise IAS on how to obtain an accurate report to the DWP, these proceedures need to be enforced.

 When requesting an Mandatory Reconsideration the DWP do not take any notice to reasons why the claimants believes the report is flawed, there responses are almost like auto responses repeating what has been advised by IAS. They don't investigate the issues raised, they don't consider whether IAS have followed proceedures which often results in claimants having to go through the appeal process, in which the amount of Tribunals over turned are so high and at the tax payers expense.

Claimants are often treated unfairly and discriminated because they are disabled.

 There is a complaints process if claimants are not happy, however, IAS or the DWP will not accept any responsibility for their mistakes and it is a very long complaints process.

 If you are not happy with how your complaint has been dealt with by the IAS and the DWP you can escalate your complaint to the Independent Case Examiner who are actually not independent and are funded by the DWP. The time scale on waiting for your complaint to be dealt with is lengthy and disappointing when there response repeats what the DWP have said in their and agree with the response from IAS rather than investigating the evidence put to them. The rates in which An ICE complaints are dealt with is also very low showing unfairness to claimants who escalate their complaint to them and is yet another delaying tactic.

 The next stage is the Parliamentary Ombudsman in which I found did not investigate Maladministration, or whether proceedures have been followed but focus there response being unable to investigate decisions made rather than investigating Maladministration.

If a claimant is lucky the Parliamentary Ombudsman will then only advise the DWP to put wrongs right but I have read a number of stories by claimants in which the DWP refuse to accept advice from the Parliamentary Ombudsman which indicates that the Parliamentary Ombudsman has no powers which is yet again just another delaying tactic in which more and more claimants are now looking into judgical reviews to seek justice for being treated so unfairly.

 My complaint is yet again with the parliamentary ombudsman waiting allocation and has so far taken 6 years to get to this stage which will most likely end up where I have to apply for a judgical review.

proceedures need to be enforced during assessments, other government bodies need to be aware of proceedures and whether they have followed which will prevent so many appeal process and complaints procedures.

 Stop awarding for incompetent. And help protect vulnerable/disabled people.

 

 January 2022