To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether it is her policy that (a) referrals to Work Capability Assessments continue during the covid-19 outbreak and (b) staff are processing those referrals as normal.
2 June 2020
From 17 March 2020 we suspended all face-to-face assessments for sickness and disability benefits for three months to protect vulnerable people (and assessment centre staff) from unnecessary risk of exposure to COVID-19. The Department continues to refer new claims for a Work Capability Assessment (WCA) to our provider, CHDA. If it is not possible to complete an assessment based on the paper evidence, a WCA will be conducted, where possible, over the telephone.
We also announced that from 24 March 2020 we were suspending all new referrals for reviews and reassessments across disability benefits. However, where a claimant has reported a deterioration in their condition, we will refer them for a reassessment. Where possible we will also continue to process cases that have already been referred to our assessment provider.