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Department for Work and Pensions written question – answered on 11th February 2019.

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Photo of Andrew Rosindell Andrew Rosindell Conservative, Romford

Whether her Department has plans to redesign the reassessment process for benefit recipients with severe mental or physical disabilities.

Photo of Sarah Newton Sarah Newton The Minister of State, Department for Work and Pensions

We are committed to assessing people with health conditions and disabilities fairly and accurately, and helping people to access the right support. We made a clear commitment in Improving Lives: The Future of Work, Health and Disability to reform the Work Capability Assessment (WCA) and recognise the importance of getting this right. We are therefore testing new approaches to build the evidence base for what works, and working with external stakeholders to inform future changes to the WCA.

Over the last year we have introduced new guidance into Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) and Universal Credit (UC), as well as updated guidance for Personal Independence Payment (PIP) to improve the service we provide for those with the most severe/lifelong conditions. For ESA/UC since September 2017 we have switched off routine reassessments for those who meet the Severe Conditions criteria, and since August 2018, those receiving the highest level of support in PIP, whose needs are unlikely to change or may get worse, will now receive an ongoing award with a light touch review at the ten year point.

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