We have all heard the horrible accounts of claimants suffering at the hands of the DWP, the endless distress it causes many cannot be minimised or the deaths that have occurred primarily amongst those with Mental Health Conditions. When I had the offer of a claimant to give me access to a assessment that was recorded I jumped at it. I made a promise not to disclose their ID or personal information under DPA. Many will know the dread filled moments of the’ brown envelope syndrome of the dreaded ‘WCA’ assessment coming through the letterbox.
However the questions I felt would be worth documenting for the many who face this barbaric process and I’m glad I did as for once, this would give an insight into the type of things a claimant was asked, rather than hearsay on social media.The claimant was assessed by a Nurse who gave her name without being asked for it, that was my first shock,normally they are a bit shy to divulge such information and often object the client was shown empathy, care and consideration . I am know this claimant felt traumatised, but that wasn’t down to the assessor.
The following is a transcript of those questions which many will be familiar with.
Q1. Conditions you are suffering from and medications in detail.
Q2. .When did you start having anxiety and what caused it
Q3. When are you seeing GP again and why were you taken off medication
Q4. How does this affect you daily
Q5. Questions of Sensativity : Drinking, Street drugs, Suicidal Ideation, Thoughts of self harm now. Client is in severe distress at this point and crying uncontrollably at this point
Q6. Mood Changes, Verbal , Aggressive behaviour , Social Interactions
Q7. Asks questions about home and relationships with others
Q8. When client last worked or studying
Q9. How does client spend day
Q10. Asks about poor sleep patterns of clients anxiety
Q11. Asks about whether client forgets to eat due to depression, bathing, and dressing, medications
Q12.Shopping who does shopping, does client go out alone, does client use self service till or cash desk, client discusses anxiety re shopping. (Trusts issues.)
Q13. Asks client about social media – client discussed disassociation, lack of self worth, fear of rejection
Q14. How Does client see things improving in future. Client in obvious distress and crying and unable to cope to answer coherently.
Q15. Managing day to day Important finances and daily life in general
End of assessment
In all fairness the assessor tried to reassure the claimant throughout the process and acknowledged the client’s distress, and suggested that client should seek further help from GP to tackle the obvious presenting issues faced by the client. I was pleasantly surprised that for once, the claimant was not put under any unreasonable duress by the assessor, however it was clear the claimant was not in a good space and this blogger thanks them for sharing this experience to show and highlight there are some good ones operating and for a change show a positive process.This claimant was clearly lucky the assessor showed some consideration and compassion,however the outcome of this is still to be decided by the Decision Maker at DWP who makes the award of which conditionality group this claimant will find themselves in in 6 wks time, which they were told was time frame for the outcome. We hope that this claimant is successful.