We want more older people, and their friends and families, to share their experiences of health and social care with us.
Disabled activists have welcomed “timely” new research that concludes that the government’s “fitness for work” process has caused a deterioration in many people’s mental health which they have failed to recover from, and has even led to thoughts of suicide.
The research, Mental Health And Unemployment In Scotland, was carried out by academics at Scotland’s Heriot-Watt and Edinburgh Napier universities*.
Researchers spoke in-depth to 30 people across Scotland with mental health conditions who had experienced the work capability assessment (WCA) system, as well as staff from advice and advocacy organisations.
They concluded that the assessors, employed by the US outsourcing company Maximus, “do not appear to have appropriate expertise in mental health”.
And they added: “The WCA experience for many, caused a deterioration in people’s mental health which individuals did not recover from.
“In the worst cases, the WCA experience led to thoughts of suicide.”
Professor Abigail Marks, one of the report’s authors, said their research showed that WCAs were “fundamentally discriminatory to people with mental health conditions”.
The research emerged as disabled people’s organisations gave evidence this week to the UN’s committee on the rights of persons with disabilities about the UK government’s failure to implement the UN disability convention.
Current laws that aim to ensure disabled people are not deprived of their liberty unlawfully are “in crisis” and need to be replaced urgently, according to the government’s advisers on law reform. The current system has led to tens of thousands of people with dementia and learning difficulties being detained in hospitals and care homes without the appropriate independent checks that their rights have not been breached, according to the Law Commission. This week, following a public consultation, the commission published its final report on Mental Capacity and Deprivation of Liberty, which includes proposals for new legislation on how the law should ensure that people without the capacity to give their consent to their care arrangements are the least restrictive they can be and are also in that person’s best interests. The current system, the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS), has been described as an “administrative and bureaucratic nightmare”, and the report says it is “overly
Fifty former federal and state environmental officials detail what the president’s budget could do to the agency and to human health.
A new study looking at injury mortality in people with autism finds that accidental deaths are common and that swimming lessons could save lives.
Protections for NHS whistleblowers are to be extended under new Government plans.