my story so far PIP ***Groan*** continued :(

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my story so far PIP ***Groan***

Postby sillyweehaggis » Tue Aug 19, 2014 11:51 am

hi all,
id like to share my story concerning pip and my fibro with you all...some might find it helpful,

firstly a little bit of background info on me, i am a married 26yr old female and mother of 2. i have had ill health since i was a teenager i suffered from a heart arrhythmia SVT firstly which i had ablated....still somewhat bothersome from time to time, and have horrific fibro.

i had managed my fibro for years with pain relief etc and struggled on for the sake of my sanity and my kids. (i refused to accept the fact that i once again was very ill and felt i was being robbed of my independence/confidence) in 2013 my fibro worsened i now rely on my husband/ crutches, my father who has moved in with us to help out and a scary amount of meds which seem to get thrown at me with out so much as a query!!

anyway after losing my ability to drive and for the better part walk i decided enough was enough and applied for pip feb2014. at this stage i spend days stuck in the top level of my house, i cannot walk without crutches, i have severe pain mostly on my right side,leg,arm,back etc i have horrific dizzy spells, get disorientated, blinding headaches, numbness, pins and needles, horrible memory clumsy etc etc the list is never ending. i cant begin to say how many people have though i was drunk or on something! (i am t total)

between march 2014 and july 2014 i made numerous phone calls to the dwp querying my claim as i had heard nothing back, on every single occasion i was told the same...its been passed on to atos, nout we can do you just have to wait.......rude staff zero help zero advice from my experience........eventually got in touch with atos in june 2014 to be told that i was making a big deal over nothing! i have had zero income in this time, was not aware of esa etc and the dwp were no help but yeah its a big deal over nothing....again countless phone calls to atos met with rude, ignorant call handlers who made me feel bad about being ill and even applying for help!

aug 2014 i eventually receive a letter from atos with a date for a medical assessment the 18th august....but its on the other side of the city where i live!!! i stated on the form i would need an app near my house or a home visit on the advice of my psychologist and gp due to my mental health issues and severe mobility issues! i again phone atos asking for an explanation as to why this is, to be told that i will not get a home visit unless im terminally ill or have zero way of leaving my house such as wheel chair bound..........im then told the appointment wont be changed, take it or leave it.

getting to this medical was an absolute nightmare!! it was in the middle of nowhere miles away from my town! my husband struggled on his own to help me into the car with my crutches, i sat in tears the whole way there due to the enormous stress and pain (i also see a psychologist every week as i suffer from agoraphobic tendencies, crippling anxiety and depression.) We arrive at an industrial site in the middle of nowhere, where we are told that the empty car park we have to gain access to is private and need to explain through a gate buzzer exactly why we are here.......we get in and are told via the buzzer that we have to park in bay 61 at the opposite end of the car park, the furthest bay away from the entrance!! my husband tries to explain that i am on crutches unable to walk more than a few meters and am in a lot of pain and that the car park only has about 4 cars parked in it, so can we please park down by the entrance, we are told no and to park in bay 61 like we were told!! ridiculous. at this time there is a woman standing at a big bay window watching us with a note pad.

i struggle out of the car with help and crutches and struggle down to the entrance with frequent rests etc. As I enter the building i am close to tears as my legs are agony, im clammy and flushed and am now suffering with a thumping pulse and horrible palpitations. GREAT! i am told to sit as they are running 45 mins late!!!!!

eventually the woman from the window appears tells me she is seeing me today, 50 minutes late! she quickly turns away, says follow me and disappears, my husband struggles to get me to my feet and patiently helps me through what feels like a mile of corridors into a tiny little roasting hot room with a computer and bed in it. again im told to sit.

the lady then explains that she does not work for atos. she fires up the computer and cannot find my questionnaire that i sent away in feb anywhere. her whole demeanour then changes and she goes from rude and not bothered to over bearing and blunt, i at this point was questioned if i had even bothered to do one and where was it then.........disgraceful! this was atos error not mine!!

she then took a long list of my medication and asked me some questions about my illnesses etc nothing in detail, and before i had the chance to fully explain anything she was pushing to move on to the next part as she was running late. she stopped numerous times to take calls and reminded me throughout that shes a nurse and does not work for atos.....i was made throughout the whole medical to feel like i had no right to be there, that i was too young to be ill, that i was a hassle etc etc and was left feeling like i should be ashamed of my situation. she was extremely blunt and over bearing and when i started to feel faint and poorly after more than an hour of being stuck in this small hot room being subjected to this and humiliated for being unwel,l she decided i was getting a short medical exam ( it stated on my app letter there would be no medical exam)

i was told to stand, i struggled to my feet with the help of my husband and immediately got a headrush and rush of palpitations. i thought i was going to throw up or faint. i told her this.....she grabbed my wrist felt for a pulse then said no you are fine!!! i was the subjected to a ridiculous exam where i was told to get up on and off a bed touch my feet etc etc. when i was unable to most of these i was drawn dirty looks and sighed at!!

i was told i could leave,,,,whilst i was walking out of the door she asked, smirking, if i cant use my right arm who put my hair in a bobble! i didnt even answer, i had already explained in depth the level of help i need from my husband and father as if its not humiliating enough needing that kind of help! i left feeling completely at blame for being ill and that it was my fault or that i was imagining it!

i was sad hurt and humiliated.

I am now angry and disgusted looking back on the whole fiasco, it was a joke from start to finish and think it is absoloutely disgraceful that they are getting away with treating people with illnesses like this!! disease and illness does not discriminate...it doesn't care how old you are how much money you have if you are a male or a female....

i am fully ready now to put in a humongous complaint and appeal if need be.you only have to look at the medication i am currently on and my extensive medical records to know that i am ill! through no fault of my own such is life! and instead of receiving help and support, i was subjected to a completely humiliating experience like that! what a farce a shambles from start to finish, i would not wish this life on anyone, i have been robbed of days our with my kids or even lifting them! hugging them hurts! i am for the most part a prisoner in my house and my loved ones see me in tears and pain all to often! i would give anything ANYTHING to be normal again! so to be treated like liar and to be bullied and ridiculed from people who hold your financial stability and lifeline in their hands is a complete disgrace.

i really hope other people have a better experience with their assessments than i did, and that you dont lose hope.....i think that's what they want. if fibro cant break me neither will they!!!

(and breath) :crazy: :crazy: :crazy:
Last edited by FluppyPuffy on Tue Aug 19, 2014 12:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Grammar, punctuation and splitting into smaller paragraphs for easier reading.
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Re: my story so far PIP ***Groan***

Postby Flippy22 » Tue Aug 19, 2014 12:10 pm

The word cruel comes to mind and i'm so sorry you have been treated like this. Have you contacted Fightback on Facebook, they are very helpful.
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Re: my story so far PIP ***Groan***

Postby sillyweehaggis » Tue Aug 19, 2014 12:25 pm

thankyou flippy22, i feel remarkably better about the whole situation after getting it off my chest, i will definitely contact fightback thanks for the info :lol: :-D i just think some of these people are in the wrong profession where is the understanding and compassion for their fellow human beings! shocking X
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Re: my story so far PIP ***Groan***

Postby Leannellie » Tue Aug 19, 2014 12:44 pm

Hi. I really feel for you. What they put you through is disgraceful. You must complain. This woman should not be able to do assessments if that's the way she treats people!! Take care and complain. I'd phone atoms or dip and tell them what she put you through.
Comfort in sound it's all around, ease back the strain, come heal your pain.
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Re: my story so far PIP ***Groan***

Postby bouncer0304 » Tue Aug 19, 2014 1:02 pm

That sounds worse than mine :-( What a horrid lady!

Firstly, fightback on facebook is your friend. They will help you in any way they can. They will have a field day with this! Any evidence you can get will help you greatly. I had my assessment recorded and i'd advise anyone to do the same. Yes you will have to wait a bit longer but it'll be worth it in the end as that'll expose any lies on the written report clearly.

I hope you get what you are entitled to. These cockroaches need to be taught a lesson. Best of luck to you!
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Re: my story so far PIP ***Groan***

Postby FluppyPuffy » Tue Aug 19, 2014 1:03 pm

:welcome: to our FibroFamily :cow-wave: :cow-wave: :cow-wave:

I've moved you over onto this board with your topic relating to a benefit claim. I've also done some editing of what you have posted to make it a little easier to read. Quite a few of us on here, myself incl, struggle to read large blocks of text, often getting lost in what we have read, going back to the start numerous times, and ending up reading the same few lines over and over again. I've split it into smaller paragraphs, as well as twiddled with a bit of grammar punctuation to make things a bit more manageable.

I'm glad to hear that you feel somewhat relieved for being able to get some of your frustrations and upset out of your system. Having such feelings overwhelming everything else is something that FM and his associated co~horts just loves us to experience, it's like a sugar rush to it and of course, we have suffer the consequences and payback :facepalm: :facepalm: :facepalm: :facepalm:

As she said repeatedly that she did not work for Atos, did she advise you which company/organisation she was from/representing as well as introducing herself???

Fightback do seem to have a decent reputation, so hopefully they will be able to help you with this nightmare that your claim has become. There may also be support organisations in your area too, such as CAB, DIAL, Welfare Rights, so it might also be worth having a look into that option too.

:goodluck2: :goodluck2: :goodluck2: :goodluck2: :goodluck2: :goodluck2: :goodluck2: :goodluck2: :goodluck2:
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Re: my story so far PIP ***Groan***

Postby paddywaddywaterloo » Tue Aug 19, 2014 1:23 pm

Can you record your assessment yourself and has it helped anyone.....I had one assessment a few months back.....clearly nothing remotely as bad as your experience. I really feel for you. I wrote asking for a copy of the assessment and there were some differences in the papers and the reality of what happened. I was thinking recording any in future would help this. Im not sure what you can do. Its awful habing this as another stress which clearly doesn't help your symptoms. ...soft hugs. I think ur husband is great being so helpful
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Re: my story so far PIP ***Groan***

Postby FluppyPuffy » Tue Aug 19, 2014 2:22 pm

paddywaddywaterloo wrote:Can you record your assessment yourself

Sort of, but it must be done officially. If someone is found to be making an unofficial recording of an assessment, the assessment will be terminated with immediate effect. Also there is no legal right to have an assessment recorded, and neither DWP or Atos have a legal obligation to provide either a recording service or equipment for recording.

A claimant's own equipment can be used for recording an assessment, but in such situations, the claimant must be able to produce a full and accurate copy of the recording for the Atos Healthcare Professional at the end of the assessment.

If someone does request to use their own equipment, it must be able to provide 2 copies of the recording which ensures that the recording has not been tampered with, as well as being an accurate and reliable record of the assessment.
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Re: my story so far PIP ***Groan***

Postby rich44 » Tue Aug 19, 2014 3:21 pm

If she doesn't work for atos who is paying her wages, what contract have they signed with the government, what name are they registered with the information commissioner with, what are her qualifications in relation to physical disability?

What a sham and absolute disgrace what excuse have these people got to treat us like cattle?

I'd like to know if they are on commission or targets the way job centre staff are for applying sanctions!

In addition to fightback also get on to your MP I've found they can be a surprising ally against government beaurocracy.

They can and do home appts on request, it might take longer but to say they're for the terminally ill is another lie!

The atos centre in Norwich is on 2nd floor in a building with no lifts, you couldn't make it up could you
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Re: my story so far PIP ***Groan***

Postby FluppyPuffy » Tue Aug 19, 2014 3:28 pm

Capita are the other provider of face~to~face assessments for PIP.

If unfit to travel, a request can be made for the assessment to take place at home. This can be arranged if the assessment provider agrees that it's necessary.

DWP guidance suggests that the assessment provider should consider a home assessment if it can be shown that home visits from the GP are the norm for the claimant.
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Re: my story so far PIP ***Groan***

Postby sillyweehaggis » Tue Aug 19, 2014 4:50 pm

hi guys, sorry my post was long and rambling i get kind of lost when trying to type, the woman who carried out my assessment did give me her name but did not tell me the company she worked for she simply said not atos, when my husband asked again she said she was a nurse whom worked for a third party....

i was advised by my gp and my psychologist that a home assessment would be the better option for me but when i was refused by atos and asked why they told me point blank that unless i was terminally ill or bed bound that there was no way i would get a home assessment.

i was not aware that i could record the assessment i wish i had been before, anything myself or my husband asked regarding time scales or what happens next etc was answered with the same "oh i couldn't tell you...or i have no idea its not my area"

after speaking to my gp today and showing her my letter she was firstly appalled at the way the assessment was handled and secondly angry that it stated on my letter there would be no medical examination, just an in depth verbal assessment for me to go and be told i was to have a medical examination........very confused by the whole ordeal tbh

the woman seemed to be more concerned about things like if i had a pet or if i drank alcohol than how my illnesses effect my day to day living i also got the feeling that when i told her i had never been much of a drinker and had been completely t total for years that she thought i was lying
:-? :-? :-?

X
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Re: my story so far PIP ***Groan***

Postby Hannah24 » Tue Aug 19, 2014 6:40 pm

Hi,

I am disgusted at the way you have been treated. You need to put in a complaint not only so if they have marked you unfairly it will help your case but also to hoepfully stop it happening to anyone else in the future.

You can apply for a home visit without being terminally ill. I am very similar to you and I asked for a home visit. It did take longer but was a lot easier on me and really helped. It does say online that for someone in our position we are entitled to a home visit so I would quote that back to them. They didn't need evidence for this and didn't really question it. It's a postcode lottery!

I hope that regardless of your ordeal that your claim and complaint is successful, and I wish you the best of luck.

Let us know how it goes.
Take care xxx
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Re: my story so far PIP ***Groan***

Postby sillyweehaggis » Fri Aug 29, 2014 1:10 pm

well guys i have just phoned pip to chase up my decision to be told i have been awarded nothing on either parts!!
i am utterly disgusted, disappointed, heartbroken, deflated i do not understand how this is even possible with how obviously ill i am and was at my assessment.
absolute joke from start to finish :(
i will appeal but i have no idea what to do now!
just utterly gobsmacked
where is the justice in this!!
nobody chooses to be this ill
robbed of a life and you get treated like this in return!!
as if its not bad enough my kids and husband see how struggling i am now the have to see me in tears AGAIN!
cannot stop shaking i am so so angry :(
X
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my story so far PIP ***Groan*** continued :(

Postby sillyweehaggis » Fri Aug 29, 2014 7:56 pm

so guys after being increasingly impatient i called the dwp this morning to see if i was any closer to a decision after my horrible assessment a couple of weeks ago,
i was told i have been awarded 0 for both parts! :cry: :cry: :cry:
feeling completely disgusted at the way i have been treated, disappointed and let down and sick of crying in front of my kids and hubby!
really cannot get my head around their decision i am very ill and was barely with it the day of the assessment,
i am now so sad and angry i cannot wait to receive the letter from them and see what this woman wrote about it and im guessing it will state nothing about how completely unprofessional the whole assessment was and how badly i was treated!
i feel like i have been robbed of my life with this illness and now cant seem to get any help!
its just completely ridiculous i have no idea what to do now!
i will most definitely be appealing this decision....my husband who was with me throughout my assessment is totally gobsmacked after all this time and with being this ill then being subjected to that horrible experience to be told no your getting no help :cry:
just want to scream the stress of this whole situation is making me ill wish there was an easier way to get the help needed!

has anyone else had their claim looked at again with a different out come????

or have they said the same and had to go to appeal????
xx
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Re: my story so far PIP ***Groan*** continued :(

Postby lindauk1 » Fri Aug 29, 2014 8:22 pm

I havnt myself im waiting to get in touch for assesment how long did you have to wait.
but i have heard loads of people say they had 0 points and they appealed then got awarded
goodluck
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