What rabbit hole have we fallen down? My experiences of Atos Work Capability Assessment


Ever since claiming Employment and Support Allowance, I’ve worried about being called to a Work Capability Assessment. A few weeks ago, a letter marked “Atos” dropped through my door. As I’d feared, it instructed me to attend for WCA at my nearest assessment centre.

Knowing how anxious I was my partner, Tom (a senior NHS manager), arranged to take the day off work so that he could support me. Before we set off we agreed, following a suggestion from a bipolar friend who had recently undergone his own WCA, that Tom would not only sit in, but would take notes of the assessment. We were both well aware that general healthcare professionals don’t always have a good understanding of mental health issues, so we planned to ask the assessor their name, qualifications and experience in mental health at the start of the interview. Again on the advice of my friend…

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