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TOPIC: poor pip assessment

poor pip assessment 1 month 2 weeks ago #220266

Hi,

Thanks again, Gordon for all your marvellous work, your knowledge is very much appreciated.

To summarise where I'm at: in 2017 transferred to PIP and was only given 4 points for moving around (from HR DLA on both components), asked for a MR and in January 2018 was awarded 14 points for daily living and 8 points for moving around, award til April 2019 so in April 2018 had to fill in an AR1. I ticked 'no change' on all Qs and summarised in boxes how things are still the same.

Early August 2018 I had a F2F with IAS which I recorded, with permission. I still have not had a decision made but have got the PA4 and am preparing for a MR and compiling a complaint letter to IAS while I wait as the HP has only recommended 2 points for cooking and 8 points for moving around - his justifications being based on my fatigue (CFS, but I also have other conditions). His report contains many errors and omissions and inconsistencies and I have had a transcript professionally typed up of the interview.

I was previously awarded 2 points for urge incontinence (needs an aid - i.e. pads)) but this time no points, because I was not asked about it during the history taking, which I would not have realised without having the recording. The HP's actual question to me for the 'managing toilet needs or incontinence' was:

"Ok, erm, any problems using the toilet? So, that, we're looking at sitting, standing and cleaning yourself afterwards."

There was never any question about incontinence, and after my reply he moved straight on to dressing. I didn't realise this omission at the time because I have brain fog and was exhausted during the F2F. He didn't go through my actual conditions and symptoms until the end (which was weird) so I didn't get to discuss my incontinence until after he had taken the Functional History and so consequently it doesn't appear in the FH - that just says:

'Managing toilet needs or incontinence - She is able to use the toilet and clean herself afterwards. She uses fixtures and fittings around the toilet to help her stand.'

That's all he has written. I had mentioned urge incontinence in the PIP2 & AR1, and this HP has mentioned it in the Condition History section of the PA4 but has used his own words - "she can have accidents and has pads just in case", whereas I had actually said I wet myself, four times, in the interview, to use the term 'accidents' is so vague, those were not my words. By the way, in his summary justification he says: "She reports she wears pads, this is inconsistent with the assessment findings" - which it isn't - and goes on to say "She has no input from the incontinence team" ((have been seeing consultants, GPs and even had an operation & 4 different medications in past) "FH states she can use the toilet, therefore, even though she states she needs to use the fixtures and fittings, the evidence suggests that she is able to reliably manage her toilet needs".


So to get to the point, I am wondering whether this omission is large enough (there are other omissions too) to say in my complaint to IAS that the report is of an unacceptable standard and should be withdrawn? I realise that would mean another F2F but that might be preferable than going through a MR and Tribunal, and also they shouldn't be allowed to get away with such trickery.

Sorry the post is so long, I felt I needed to explain the details. Thanks.

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poor pip assessment 1 month 2 weeks ago #220274

sickandtired

Unfortunately, assessment reports are a grey area, there are few definitive errors in a report that will result in it being withdrawn.

I would certainly argue that the assessor's failure to discuss your toileting needs means that they are not in a position to award or not award points for this activity, however, if there was sufficient information in the documentation supplied for this review and previously then they may opt to update the report and not hold a new assessment.

As an aside, the statement

"She uses fixtures and fittings around the toilet to help her stand"

would seem to imply a need for an aid.

Gordon
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poor pip assessment 1 month 1 day ago #221116

Okay, so the brown envelope finally arrived today and my award (following review) has been downgraded to only 2 points on Daily Living (from 14) for preparing food, and keeping my previous Standard Mobility award (8 points on moving around). The decision maker's summary is almost entirely based on the HP's 'informal observations' section, which is almost entirely fictitious and I can counter virtually every one of those 'observations' with evidence to the contrary - for instance he said I didn't appear tired or in pain but on the cassette recording I can be heard groaning and sighing heavily at least 35 times, and the transcriptionist has typed those in for me. The transcriptionist has also made a note that I spoke very slowly and quietly throughout, with long pauses between my words, whereas the HP used the stock phrase: " Speech was normal in amount, content, rate, tone and volume", which the Decision Maker has cited in her summary, so I can challenge that, thank goodness I got a recording!

So I will be putting in for a MR. My question today is: on the decision letter under "How I made my decision", the Decision Maker says:

"I looked at all the information available to me, including: * the 'How your disability affects you' form. This told me the type of help you needed.....(etc., etc.)"

So that was the only evidence listed, there was no mention of the review form, and in her summary there was no mention of this being a review (I had stated 'no change' on the AR1). Should both forms have been listed, or is this inferring that she has read both forms? And is it worth bringing up in the MR? Reading the summary it doesn't look like she's bothered to read any of the forms or my medical evidence anyway. Of course, I will also be following your usual advice, Gordon, to be sure to show how I should score the points, but do I need to address all the Decision Maker's erroneous justifications, and the HP's faulty IOs? They don't all necessarily relate to how I should score points.

Oh, also, when I write for the MR, do I need to go over the Mobility section as well, to show evidence for the award I have already been given (to avoid losing it)?

:)

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poor pip assessment 1 month 1 day ago #221120

sickandtired

I would guess that the phrase is simply a stock phrase that is copied/pasted into the letter each time.

Certainly, for a review, your current AR1 Review form and your previous PIP2 should have been reviewed by both the assessor and the Decision Maker, if you do not think that this has happened then you should comment on this.

There's no clear answer to your question about the Mobility component, whilst I can't say that providing no information will not result in it being looked at, it is likely that providing some info will mean that they will look at it, so on balance I would probably leave it alone if you are happy with the award.

Gordon
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poor pip assessment 1 week 3 days ago #222393

Hi Gordon,
I have my MR request ready to send in before the one month deadline, but I still haven't got all my further evidence together - am I right in thinking that if I say I am waiting on further evidence to send separately that I will be given another month to get this in before they do the MR?
I have looked through the PIP guide but can't seem to find anything about this.
Thanks again.

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poor pip assessment 1 week 3 days ago #222413

sickandtired

They should give you another four weeks, ring them to confirm that this has been done. The extra time if for them to receive the documents so you will need to post well before this and course be mindful of Christmas delays.

Gordon
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