An occupational therapist who carried out a “misleading” benefit assessment has been suspended for a year after regulators found she reported carrying out a physical examination of a disabled man that did not take place.
Paru Vekaria has shown no remorse over the incident, in which she stated in a written report for government contractor Maximus that she had carried out a detailed physical examination of the claimant.
But both the claimant – referred to as Service User A – and his daughter, who attended the work capability assessment (WCA) with him, said no such examination had taken place.
As a result of her “misleading” report, Service User A was found fit for work by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and so ineligible for employment and support allowance (ESA).
DWP later rubber-stamped the decision through the mandatory reconsideration process, and it was only at an appeal tribunal eight months later that the decision was overturned and Service User A was found eligible for ESA.