Atos Healthcare, together with our healthcare partner organisations, has a large team of skilled Health Professionals (HP) in place to deliver Personal Independence Payment (PIP) assessments. All of these HPs are fully qualified in their chosen discipline and all have at least two years post registration experience. In addition to this they also undertake a comprehensive training programme, tailored to suit their professional background and experience, covering all aspects of the face-to-face PIP assessment. This includes comprehensive coverage of the PIP guidance, activities and descriptors provided by The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), as well as topics such as communication skills, both in general terms and for specific situations. Their training includes the causes of impairment, both physical and mental, providing a good grounding in disability analysis. Moreover, they have access to the support of Health Professional Champions with specialist knowledge in specific areas, such as mental function.
The Health Professionals, following their training, are subject to supervised practice, quality assurance and audit prior to DWP approval. In common with all HPs in the UK our staff will continue their learning and professional development over the months and years to come using a programme tailored to their role as disability analysts. Continuous Professional Development modules will be developed and agreed annually with the DWP and based on a robust training needs analysis. This analysis will be informed by feedback from various sources including: the DWP; disability representative groups; and internal audits. A Health Professional’s quality and performance is also closely managed on an individual level, based on such things as positive and negative feedback raised by you, as well as quality audits.
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More information about Health Professional’s training can be found on our website.
Health Professionals (HPs) are the people who undertake Personal Independence Payment (PIP) assessments. The reports they produce are sent to the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). Atos Healthcare HPs are experienced physiotherapists, nurses, occupational therapists and doctors who have been trained in the specialist field of disability assessment. They come from a variety of health backgrounds such as the NHS, and private practices, so they have experience working with people in all kinds of complex and challenging circumstances.
The PIP assessment is not a “medical” one in the traditional sense, because the Health Professionals will be looking at the impact of your disability or health condition on your daily life rather than diagnosing or treating the condition itself. The assessment our Health Professionals perform is in accordance with criteria set by the DWP. It looks at somebody’s ability to carry out a number of key everyday activities. The assessment considers both physical and mental/cognitive challenges that are faced by claimants.
The Health Professional reviews information provided on your ‘How your disability affects you’ form and any other supporting evidence provided. They decide whether a report can be produced based on the information provided, if more evidence is needed to complete a report without the need to see you, or if we need see you for a face-to-face consultation. Most people will be asked to see an HP in a face-to-face consultation and this will give you the opportunity to tell him or her how your health condition or disability affects your daily life in your own words. The HPs may also request further information from other professionals involved in your care. They will take account of all information gathered and send a report to the DWP. A Decision Maker in the DWP will use the report, along with any other information provided, to decide upon your PIP entitlement and level.
More information on Health Professionals can be found on our website.
When you make a claim for Personal Independence Payment (PIP), the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) will first check that the basic entitlement conditions (as set by the DWP) are met. The PIP entitlement conditions stipulate that you must be aged between 16 and 64 and have had difficulties with ‘activities of daily living’ and/or mobility for three months and expect them to last for at least 9 months. If you meet these criteria a PIP assessment will take place.
The DWP will ask you to complete a ‘How your disability affects you’ form about how your health condition or disability affects your daily life. They will then pass this information to one of their assessment providers, of which Atos Healthcare is one. A Health Professional (HP) with specialist training in assessing the impact of disability will consider your ability to carry out a series of key everyday activities using guidance provided by the DWP. Sometimes they will be able to do this by using the information you have provided on your ‘How your disability affects you’ form together with any supporting evidence, but it is more likely that they will ask you to attend a face to face consultation.
Whether the HP has been able to assess your claim with or without the need for a face to face consultation, they will produce a report of their findings and send it to the DWP. Using this report, together with any other available information, the DWP will decide on your PIP entitlement and level.
More information on Personal Independence Payment assessments can be found on our website.
Yesterday saw the arrival of the first PIP referral from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to Atos Healthcare. Our customer service staff and Health Professionals have undertaken comprehensive training programmes and have been preparing for this day for many months and are keen to start playing their parts in the PIP assessment process. We aim to deliver a high standard of service where you are treated as an individual and with courtesy and respect.
The Atos Healthcare PIP Assessment Service will operate in Scotland, north east England, Yorkshire and Humberside, north west England, south east England, south west England and London. The national rollout of PIP for new claims starts on the 10th June 2013 but for those living in the north of England the new rules already apply for new claims. See our previous post about the post codes currently covered and for more information about the Atos Healthcare PIP Assessment Service see our website.
More information on PIP can be found on our website.
We have recently revamped the assessment centre locations pages on our website. They now provide the same information that you will get with your appointment letter if you need an assessment at one of the assessment centres, with the added feature of an interactive map.
Every one of the locations where we carry out Work Capability Assessments is listed on the website, organised by region. To find the centres nearest to you simply enter your postcode in the search box. You can also navigate through the list by region. You will normally be asked to attend a centre within 90 minutes travel by public transport of your home postcode, but you can ask to be seen at any of the locations if it is more convenient to you.
Each page has the following information
- The full address of the site, including a postcode to use in sat-navs if different to the full address.
- A map of the immediate area with a marker indicating where the centre is.
- Travel information for travel by both car and public transport.
- Any additional information, such as the location of nearby parking.
If you have any further enquiries about an assessment centre in advance of your appointment you can get in touch with our contact centre on 0800 2888 777, and our advisors will be happy to help.