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Nearly 60% of Capita assessment reports for personal independence payment (PIP) fell below acceptable standards at one time and no employment and support allowance (ESA) or PIP provider has ever met their target for the proportion of acceptable reports, according to a DWP document.

The information was included in a document entitled ‘Work and Pensions Select Committee PIP and ESA Assessments inquiry: Supporting Statistics’.

The PIP figures cover a period from Jan 2014 to October 2017.

They show that in February 2015 56.1% of Capita reports were considered to be of such poor standard that they were classed as unacceptable. This did not, it should be noted, mean that they were not still used for the purposes of deciding entitlement to PIP.

In February 2016 the proportion of unacceptable reports still stood at 30.4%.

However, in March 2016 the DWP suddenly changed the way that reports were assessed and Capita’s performance miraculously improved so that the March percentage of unacceptable reports fell to 15.8%.

This fell even further, dropping as low as 3.1% in December 2016, though it has now risen again to 7.3% in October of this year.

Atos, or IAS as they now prefer to be known, have never plumbed quite the same depths as Capita.

But in June 2014 29.1% of their PIP assessment reports were deemed unacceptable.

This has now fallen to 6.2%.

The contract with the DWP requires that no more than 3% of PIP assessment reports are judged to be unacceptable. This has never been achieved.

Unacceptable reports for ESA are generally at a much lower level. Maximus, or CHDA as they prefer to be called, recorded an unacceptable level of 10.3% in May 2015.

This had fallen to 7.9% by October 2017.

However, the target for ESA reports is that no more than 5% should be found to be unacceptable. Again it is a target that has never been met.

Yet these same unacceptable reports are still being used to make decisions on PIP and ESA entitlement.

You can download the DWP’s briefing document and excel files from this link.

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