What happens now??

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What happens now??

Postby Debbie B » Fri Feb 03, 2012 1:09 pm

Sorry I have not posted lately - been very depressed and suicidal. All over this upcoming ATOS medical and what do I do re my ESA payments.

I have this medical next Friday and not sure if I can live with the sheer nerves this causes me. My Dad is giving me and my fiance a lift there, but although I will not be alone, I just cannot see the point of it all, as its inevitable I will "fail" it and then the ensuing appeal will be too much for me to bear.

All I read about ATOS is every claimant is seen as a liar who tries to cheat the system, and these are people a lot worse than me, ie blind, brain tumour, in a coma even :yikes: . What chance do I have then?

And what happens re the ESA money that runs out on 1st March? Do I need to go to see my GP and ask for another certificate to cover me? The appointment from James Paget to see a CFS professional has STILL not arrived, despite them assuring me I would know by the end of January.

Do I mention at ATOS medical the fact I am waiting for this appointment up JP and cannot seriously improve how I am until I am properly diagnosed and given medication or help that I need, there is no realistic way I can apply for a job.

And the fact I am not going there saying I am disabled (as I am NOT), but have a debilitating illness, my fiance fears that they will only be interesting in the PHYSICAL side of disability - not the mental and emotional which affect me more than the physical pain and exhaustion. Sorry to go on but I am really worried.
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Re: What happens now??

Postby newey » Fri Feb 03, 2012 1:58 pm

I am also gettin worried as I keep hearin esa stops after a year and
mine runs out in july. Iv not had any problems so far and while I
Was employed but of sick the company used atos for there medicals
And the lady on the fone was very strong about tellin me I'm not fit
For work as I was tryin 2 go back even tho I was really bad .

But good luck with ur medical x
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Re: What happens now??

Postby Debbie B » Fri Feb 03, 2012 3:20 pm

I just phoned Job Centre up and after the usual frustrating wait on hold, I was put through.

I explained my situation and was told (rather sarcastically) that I "simply go to my GP and get another certificate as the claim will continue". OK - but if I KNEW that I would not have wasted time phoning up would I.

Perhaps if they made things on their website clearer and we could understand their processes, it would be easier. I am sorry I get confused and muddled and want things spelt out to me in the simplest of terms - I cannot help this brain fog which ruins my life.

Hopefully Newie, this will be of help to you also.
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Re: What happens now??

Postby Ldyalb » Fri Feb 03, 2012 3:45 pm

Hi Debbie

I had my ESA medical 6 days ago - don't let it stress you. The experience wasn't that bad itself, she asked a few stupid questions, like 'do you have a pulse?' :shock: but aside from that, and me having to repeat things due to a language barrier, it wasn't too bad. The worst part was that they made me wait almost 40 minutes after my appointment time to be seen. There is always a chance that they may find in your favour - there's not as many people being found ill as there should be but some people do get the right outcome. You may be lucky and be one of them. Prepare for the worst but don't give up - you may be one of the lucky ones.

If you are found to be fit at the medical then you can appeal. When you appeal you have a one month deadline to tell them you're appealing. It's best to write to them asap, explain that you're appealing and that you will send further details of why you are appealing once you have reviewed the medical report completed by ATOS and the other factors used by the decision maker.

You can request the medical report at any time, my medical was on Saturday so I called the DWP on Monday and told them I wanted the report to be sent to me as soon as it was available. During the appeal you have two options: keep claiming ESA assessment rate, or claim JSA. If you keep claiming ESA the only difference is that they won't pay your NI stamps anymore and you will have to keep sending in sick notes from your GP.

At the medical they asked me questions about my mental health as well as my physical health. So they should give you the opportunity to explain about problems you have stemming from mental health issues. Or the effect that having Fibro has had on your mental health.

If you have been feeling suicidal then you must tell them. And you must tell your Dr if you haven't already. There are people out there who can help you, if you need extra support you have us, organisations such as the Samaritans etc will also be able to help you. Don't suffer alone. And please seek help.

At the medical make sure you tell the HCP that you have been feeling suicidal and how long you've had those feelings. One of the factors they have to consider is whether forcing someone back to work would be detrimental to them or other people i.e. do they have a mental health condition which could lead to them harming themselves, or other people if they are forced back to work? Make sure you tell the HCP the level of stress and depression which you are suffering from.
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