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PIP Retesting ? Some Now Spared That Indignity ! - Carers UK Forum

PIP Retesting ? Some Now Spared That Indignity !

All about money
Some good news for once ... this morning's Guardian ... the words ... SHUT / STABLE DOOR / BOLTED ... spring to mind :


https://www.theguardian.com/society/201 ... assessment

Parkinson’s and MS patients spared benefit retesting in U-turn.

Charities welcome move but say Pip assessment process needs fundamental reform.
People with severe, degenerative medical conditions such as Parkinson’s and multiple sclerosis will no longer have to undergo regular tests to prove they remain eligible for disability benefits, ministers have confirmed.

The change means that people awarded the highest level of personal independence payment (Pip) for conditions that are not expected to improve will be subjected to “light touch” reassessment just once a decade.

Charities and campaigners welcomed the decision as a significant change for people with chronic conditions who are forced to go through the notoriously stressful Pip reassessment process as often as every two years.

But they warned that the change – which mirrors those made last year to employment and support allowance “fit for work” tests – was piecemeal and more fundamental reforms were needed to the inherently flawed Pip assessment process.


“This announcement will be welcome news for people with Parkinson’s currently receiving the highest level of Pip, as they will now avoid needless and stressful annual reassessments,” said Laura Cockram, the head of policy and campaigns at Parkinson’s UK.

“However, it will only affect half of people with the condition currently receiving Pip and is a piecemeal solution for a broken system that needs a complete overhaul. The assessment process is simply not fit for purpose, and does not recognise the reality of living with long-term, progressive conditions.”

The minister for disabled people, health and work, Sarah Newton, said: “We’ve listened to feedback from organisations and the public, and this common-sense change will ensure that the right protections are in place while minimising any unnecessary stress or bureaucracy.”

Pip, which was previously known as disability living allowance, is a benefit awarded to help people with the extra costs of living with a disability, worth between £22.65 and £145.35 a week, depending on the severity of the condition.

James Taylor, the head of policy and public affairs at the disability charity Scope, said: “Today’s announcement is a victory for common sense, but it still doesn’t address the root of the problem with Pip.”

Pip has been dogged by controversy since its rollout started in 2014. In February, an all-party group of MPs criticised the error-strewn and insensitive Pip assessment process, run by private firms Atos and Capita. More than two-thirds of Pip decisions which go to appeal are overturned.

In January, the government said it would review 1.6m Pip claims as part of major U-turn under which an estimated 220,000 claimants eventually receive backdated awards after the high court found it had been blatantly discriminatory against people with mental health conditions.


A victory for ... common sense ?

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Let's hope that extends to those with learning difficulties too. In our area, there is a new unqualified member of SS staff who has been doing annual reassessments. She has asked "When did he catch Down's Syndrome?"!