18 April 2018
What: Government responds to work and pensions committee’s report on PIP and ESA assessments [see 14 February 2018], saying it will commission research from external contractors to examine whether any aspects of ESA and PIP claim forms had the potential to cause distress, to identify what changes should be made, and to test the revised forms with applicants. But they rejected the recommendation that DWP should provide written copies of their assessment report to all claimants of PIP and ESA. They also rejected the recommendation that they should consider ditching Atos, Capita and Maximus and move the assessments back “in house”. Of 11 recommendations made by the committee in its February report, DWP appeared to have rejected five, accepted four and partially accepted two more.
Why significant: Further resistance to improve the assessment process from DWP, despite some of the committee’s recommendations being accepted.