The government's independent reviewer of the Word Capability Assessment (WCA) – the assessment gateway to Employment and Support Allowance – has today launched his Call for Evidence for the fifth annual review of the WCA. It will run until August 15.
Visit WCA on GOV.UK for more information, including the questions, previous independent reviews and the government responses to previous reviews.
The reviewer, Dr Paul Litchfield is interested in how the Work Capability Assessment is operating and further changes that might improve the process. He is particularly interested in data that supports points raised and any new evidence. The call for evidence focuses on:
the experience of the WCA process
the work-related activity group and support group
mental health and learning difficulties, and the impact of previous independent reviews.
The Department for Work and Pensions are primarily using an online survey to gather evidence – look at the questionnaire here. You can also email firstname.lastname@example.org or send responses by post.
Call for evidence material will also soon be available through GOV.UK in alternative formats: audio, BSL and Easy Read. Email email@example.com to request large print, audio cassettes, CDs, Easy Read, Braille and BSL DVDs in hard copy.
Our medical adviser, Dr Charles Shepherd, commented:
Along with members of the DWP Fluctuating Conditions Group, I met Dr Paul Litchfield last week at DWP HQ to discuss the government response to the evidence-based review (EBR) of our proposals for a revised version of the Work Capability Assessment (WCA).
We are currently in the process of setting up a further meeting with the DWP to see how we can work with them on actions resulting from the EBR and our proposals relating to the WCA.
We will be feeding information into this Call for Evidence. This will also include the results of our current website survey on ESA application outcomes.