It seems the Department for Work and Pensions is on a mission to discredit the medical profession in its entirety.
The department has already done its best to deny the professionalism of doctors by disregarding their evidence in favour of the results of a “yes/no” multiple choice test administered by “health care professionals” who often know nothing about the health issue suffered by a claimant.
Now it is trying to cut doctors working on mental health out of the benefit system by claiming that rank-and-file Job Centre advisers are just as able to spot mental health problems – and recommend the best treatment.
They aren’t; they can’t. It’s just a cynical bid to stop people with mental health problems from claiming Employment and Support Allowance or Personal Independence Payment.
One would have thought the fact that mental health issues are routinely disregarded by decision-makers would be enough to discourage the mentally-ill from claiming these benefits; apparently not.
The government press release, announcing funds for a pilot project in Cornwall to continue, is transparent in its nonsense doublespeak:
Hundreds of residents from Bude to Penzance are set to benefit from improved mental health support as Amber Rudd announces £100,000 funding for a life-changing project.
The initiative means work coaches can continue to refer people with mental health conditions to specialist one to one support, without the need for a GP or clinical assessment.
“Without the need”? Translation: “Without the support of evidence from a qualified doctor who can bring their expertise to a benefit tribunal.”
The support is also designed to help people find their way back into the workplace when they’re ready.
Translation: “The intention is to ensure that people with mental illnesses must continue to seek employment, whether they are ready or not.”
In fact, this treatment seems more likely to worsen their mental health and force them towards suicide – a “positive benefit outcome” as far as the DWP is concerned (as This Site has mentioned many times before).
Work and Pensions Secretary Amber Rudd showed her lack of any integrity at all by backing up the baloney to the hilt:
Amber Rudd, Work and Pensions Secretary, said:
“The pilot proved that work coaches are well placed to make sure people get help quickly and are supported to get their lives back on track so I’m delighted that it can continue.
“Importantly it has also shown that people trust their work coach to help them during their toughest times – and I’m very proud of that.”
Is that right?
I’d like to see independent evidence of that, from somebody who has been through the system.
Of course, that would be someone who is not still a part of the system – a person who could not be subjected to any coercion to say what Ms Rudd wanted; someone not living in fear of the cancellation of benefits.
Is there such a person?
And will they dare come forward?
In any case, if anybody in the DWP discovers what they consider to be a mental illness in a benefit claimant, they have a duty to report it to the NHS. Anything else is negligence and – if any harm comes to that claimant – could lead to serious allegations against the DWP.
Suppose somebody dies after the DWP decides to handle that person’s mental illness itself. Won’t it be opening itself to a charge of corporate manslaughter, at the very least?
Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.
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