What is a healthcare professional?
A healthcare professional is a healthcare worker employed by an organisation called Atos Healthcare to carry out medical assessments for the DWP. This includes the work capability assessment, the medical test for employment and support allowance (ESA).
So, is a healthcare professional a doctor then?
The healthcare professional may be a doctor, nurse, occupational therapist, or physiotherapist.
Will the healthcare professional have specialist knowledge of my condition?
No, almost certainly not. Most mental health assessments, for example, are carried out by non-specialist nurses.
What do I need to tell the healthcare professional?
You need to tell the healthcare professional how your condition affects you when performing different tasks, including any pain or tiredness you feel. As well as asking you specific questions, the healthcare professional will be observing you all of the time.
What happens if I do not go to see the healthcare professional?
Unless you can show good cause for not going to see the healthcare professional you could lose your employment and support allowance. You may, for example, have been too ill to attend. If this is the case you need to let the DWP know the reason for your non-attendance as soon as you are able.