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WCA assessors: How much training?

22 September 2014

Disability Rights UK has just been sent the result of a Freedom of Information (FOI) request regarding the length and type of training for work capability assessment Health Care Professionals (HCPs)

The request asked:

  1. Length of Training Course given to HCP for Physical and Mental illnesses(i.e Chronic Pain Syndrome, Aggressive Disorder etc) in relation to ESA medicals. (ie is it a day course, a week a year?)
  2. A list of topics covered in the training and what mental disorders training is given on.
  3. A copy of the training material used to train HCP on mental disorders
  4. Is there an exam at the end of the training course to access candidates understanding of the topics covered?

In response the DWP attached summaries of training documents for:

This information includes the number of days training allocated to each HCP (around 17 days for nurses and physiotherapists, less for doctors) and the number of days allocated for mental health training.

The DWP declined to provide copies of detailed training material.

“I am unable to provide copies of detailed training material and multiple choice examination questionnaires because if publicly released, the material contained within the specific assessments and the general guidance that is provided to trainers throughout the training course, if seen by candidates may lead to unfair advantage and inappropriate successful completion of the course.”

Disability Rights UK would like to thank the individual, who made the original FOI, for furnishing us with this useful information.