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Range of outcomes for Work Capability Assessments via "telephone assessments at scale"

Frank Zola made this Freedom of Information request to Department for Work and Pensions

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Dear Department for Work and Pensions,

Further to your Touchbase update https://news.dwp.gov.uk/dwplz/lz.aspx?p1... reported at https://www.rightsnet.org.uk/welfare-rig... can you provide information on:

[1] " a limited range of outcomes"

[2] "increasing the range and volume of outcomes that can be provided for claimants"

in relation to:

'We [DWP] ... introduced telephone assessments at scale for WCAs from June 2020 which follow the same structure as face to face assessments. Initially, these resulted in a limited range of outcomes. We have continued to focus on developing our assessment processes and increasing our capacity and capability to assess people by telephone; increasing the range and volume of outcomes that can be provided for claimants ... This approach enables us to ensure claimants receive their correct benefit entitlement as quickly as possible and reduce the time that claimants who may be entitled to a higher award have to wait for their assessment.'
https://www.rightsnet.org.uk/welfare-rig...

Specifically what exactly had been the "limited range of outcomes" [1] and what exactly are the newer increased range [2]?

Can you also provide information held of what the legislative basis is for making WCA "telephone assessments" and the range of outcomes for claimants entitlements?

On a final note can you provide information concerning Touchbase no longer being published on gov.uk and it not being possible to view past editions you send via email, which include a link to view online but not past copies/an archive? You started publishing Touchbase on gov.uk 14 September 2015 and the last update was 9 March 2020

Yours faithfully,

Frank Zola

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S. Gwilliam left an annotation ()

Frank,

You may be interested in the reponse on 9th Feb to my recent Internal Review request here:
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/7...

"....... We have now put appropriate quality assurance measures in place, enabling it to
provide all outcomes following telephone assessments.

Following a telephone Work Capability Assessment (WCA), Health Care Professionals (HCP)
are recommending the full range of outcomes to decision makers. This includes Limited
Capability for Work (LCW), Limited Capability for Work and Work Related Activity (LCWRA)
and no LCW."

S. Gwilliam left an annotation ()

Additional:

Rightsnet have now followed up on that IR response and have today published confirmation from the DWP:
https://www.rightsnet.org.uk/welfare-rig...

DWP Central FOI Team,

1 Attachment

Dear Frank Zola,

I am writing in response to your request for information, received 18th
February.

Yours sincerely,

DWP Central FoI Team

We don't know whether the most recent response to this request contains information or not – if you are Frank Zola please sign in and let everyone know.