London North-Central Branch
PIP assessments are being managed by IAS (Independent Assessment Services), formerly known as Atos Healthcare. Atos acquired a toxic reputation of heavy-handedness, evidence-evasion, dishonesty, falsification, malpractice and were the subject of a Parliamentary Committee investigation until it was put on hold due to the June General Election. Get-out-of-jail card.
Complaints did not come simply from devastated claimants but from a broad range of parties including GPs, MPs, Care organizations, Charities and Disability Rights Groups. The trail of disappointment, grief, depression, physical and financial hardship and even suicide is testament to the swathe of misery cut by this profit-obsessed behemoth.
On 12 June 2017, Atos Healthcare suddenly and very quietly rebranded itself as Independent Assessment Services. The real reason for this is unclear, but as they didn't change the locks on the executive bathroom, it is unlikely that a change in corporate culture has taken place.
I am the first Ataxia UK member to undergo the PIP assessment since the IAS rebranding and I intend to use my experience to document the process under the new regime. People in the world of disability are understandably keen to monitor this case
In addition to uploading all relevant documents (see library page), including highly personal medical records, I recorded my Home Consultation Medical Assessment on cassette (with permission). Although I signed an agreement that the recording should only be used in private, I will seek to legally publish the recording and transcripts as a hands-on guidleline to help others, as well as supporting evidence in the event of a dispute.