A watchdog is examining the failure of two healthcare regulators to punish nurses, paramedics and physiotherapists who write dishonest benefit assessment reports.
The Professional Standards Authority (PSA) is looking at concerns about the way regulators deal with complaints about nurses, physiotherapists and paramedics who carry out personal independence payment (PIP) assessments on behalf of the outsourcing giants Capita and Atos.
About 300 disabled people have come forward over the last year to tell Disability News Service (DNS) how assessors working for Atos and Capita wrote dishonest PIP assessment reports, on behalf of the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).
Many raised concerns about the apparent refusal of the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) to take their complaints seriously.
Now PSA has told DNS that it has begun to examine how the regulators deal with those complaints.
Among the evidence it will be considering are last week’s DNS reports on data released by DWP to campaigner John Slater under freedom of information laws, which included figures that showedthat up to 180 PIP assessors had been the subject of at least four complaints each in three-month periods in 2016.
It comes as the Commons work and pensions select committee published its findings into the assessment processes for both PIP and employment and support allowance, the out-of-work disability benefit.