Atos nurse struck off over PIP assessment lies

Atos Tentacles

11th August 2016

A nurse has been struck off after pretending that she had assessed disabled people for their eligibility for disability benefits in their own homes, when she had actually carried out the assessments by telephone.

Amelia Victoria Bailey was conducting personal independence payment (PIP) assessments for the government contractor Atos when her deception was discovered by her employer.

Atos and the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) have since had to review every one of the assessments Bailey carried out.

Bailey’s deception was exposed when a manager realised that several of her assessment reports had been completed at times when, according to her diary, she should have been attending appointments.

When Atos contacted some of the disabled people Bailey had supposedly visited at home, many of them said their assessments had in fact been carried out by telephone.

Bailey had made up comments about the appearance of the claimants, and falsified her own clinical findings. She also submitted fake claims for travel expenses in a bid to cover her tracks.

When she was confronted by her manager, she admitted carrying out about half of her assessment reports by telephone and blamed “personal issues and a backlog of work”.

Now she has been struck off the nursing register by a Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) panel, which found her guilty of misconduct.

The revelation of her dishonesty comes only days after Disability News Service revealed that another PIP assessor, a nurse with extreme right-wing sympathies, was suspended by another government contractor, Capita, after she posted disablist, racist comments about social security claimants on her Facebook page.

And DNS also reports this week how another nurse has been struck off for conducting “fitness for work” assessments of disabled benefit claimants while drunk.

Bailey’s NMC panel concluded that her behaviour had put the claimants she assessed at “unwarranted risk of harm”, because she would not have been able to identify their “particular needs” properly over the telephone.

It said that such dishonesty in a “sensitive area” such as disability benefits assessments meant her dishonesty was “extremely serious”.

The panel also said that her failure to show “any insight, remorse or remediation since that time suggests a risk of repetition of such behaviour”, and it pointed out that she only admitted her deceit after pressure from her manager.

The fake assessments took place between August and November 2014, and Bailey was finally struck off in June this year.

An Atos spokesman said: “The healthcare professional in question was employed by Atos for a brief period between August and November 2014.

“Our regular reporting processes identified this as an issue and enabled us to inform DWP as soon as it was discovered.

“Atos worked in partnership with the department at every stage of the process, fully investigating and reviewing every case to ensure that all claimants received a fair, correct and comprehensive assessment.

“It is important to recognise that the behaviour of the healthcare professional in question fell very short of the expectations of both Atos and the DWP.

“The NMC decision to remove the healthcare professional from the register is entirely consistent with the serious nature of these actions.”

A DWP spokeswoman said: “We expect the highest standards from the contractors who carry out assessments on our behalf and this behaviour is in no way tolerated by DWP.

“All claimants have the right to a fair assessment and we have been working closely with Atos to fully investigate the situation and review any cases overseen by the individual concerned.”

She said she could not disclose how many PIP assessments Bailey had carried out.

Comments
  • Terminator August 11, 2016 at 4:17 pm

    I hope all those who she found not to qualify for the benefit are compensated and I do mean large payments not the measly £50 to £100 they normally give as compensation I mean thousands per claimant plus all back pay to the date of the original assessment and that money should come from ATOS and the DWP in equal amounts as the DWP are all too willing to believe the lies of their third party rather than the Person that was due an assessment. This was not the odd one but seems to have been many that she called, that’s one reason I never put any contact numbers on the forms I send them.

  • piddledoff August 21, 2016 at 11:30 pm

    Nurses are registered.It is their job to carry out accurate assessments.
    No matter what setting they work in,if you think they have been less than professional,you have the right to report them,and even have them struck off.Its your duty.Perhaps they are employing nurses that no one else would.

  • piddledoff August 21, 2016 at 11:37 pm

    A DWP spokeswoman said: “We expect the highest standards from the contractors who carry out assessments on our behalf and this behaviour is in no way tolerated by DWP. Do we really believe this?
    Now she has been struck off the nursing register by a Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) panel, which found her guilty of misconduct.Should be more of them going then.These people who carry out assessments,should wear a name badge.Perhaps we should be asked to fill in a client satisfaction form,post assessment result.Its only fair,don,t you think?

  • beltane September 12, 2016 at 7:28 pm

    It seems strange that when I tried complain about the way in which my interview/assessment was conducted they said it was a matter between me and the company they were not interested. I called the company who said they would send me a complaints form ,what I received was an information card about what to expect during the assessment. They tried to insinuate that I got it wrong or had bad memory. I replied that if that was the case why had they stated in the report I had no memory problems??? Then came the “your version of the facts” I replied that there is no such thing as a version of facts FACTS are constant so please don’t mess with the English language I HAVE DESPITE THIS SENT A FULL COMPLAINT OF THE DISCREPANCYS AND OUTRIGHT FALSE HOODS IN THE REPORT to both DWP and ATHOS and await the result If they ail to respond I will try for a judicial revue of the procedure I may be broke and physically disabled BUT I AM GOING TO BE HEARD AND DEMAND THE TO BE TREATED WITH RESPECT

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