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TOPIC: I don't know what to do, help?

I don't know what to do, help? 4 years 2 months ago #131523

  • Storm Thestral
Hi I have a problem, in that I have been sent an appointment for an assessment but I am unable to get to the place, and I requested a home assessment. My GP stated in his submission that I needed one because of my need for oxygen and my ventilator. However ATOS first said that they refused because he had not used the specific words, 'this person requires a home assessment because of......' with the list of medical reasons. So I was informed that he should fax the information with the specific words. He did this, they then said they never received the fax, so they got another fax. They are now saying they want me to attend the medical assessment in spite of my doctor saying it is impossible for me to get there.

So here's the thing, if i go to the assessment, I would be doing so against my Doctors advice, plus will they then dismiss his evidence if I get there. Do I put myself at risk or do I just not go, and put in a letter of complaint? I am so confused right now and the stress is already having a detrimental effect on my health. I had IB since little, and this is the transfer to ESA. I need a heart and lung transplant, how much more ill do I need to be before they listen.

Sorry to rant but not sure I can take much more of this.

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Last edit: by bro58.

I don't know what to do, help? 4 years 2 months ago #131549

  • bro58

Storm Thestral wrote: Hi I have a problem, in that I have been sent an appointment for an assessment but I am unable to get to the place, and I requested a home assessment. My GP stated in his submission that I needed one because of my need for oxygen and my ventilator. However ATOS first said that they refused because he had not used the specific words, 'this person requires a home assessment because of......' with the list of medical reasons. So I was informed that he should fax the information with the specific words. He did this, they then said they never received the fax, so they got another fax. They are now saying they want me to attend the medical assessment in spite of my doctor saying it is impossible for me to get there.

So here's the thing, if i go to the assessment, I would be doing so against my Doctors advice, plus will they then dismiss his evidence if I get there. Do I put myself at risk or do I just not go, and put in a letter of complaint? I am so confused right now and the stress is already having a detrimental effect on my health. I had IB since little, and this is the transfer to ESA. I need a heart and lung transplant, how much more ill do I need to be before they listen.

Sorry to rant but not sure I can take much more of this.


Hi ST,

Welcome to Benefits and Work :)

I am sorry to hear that ATOS are being so belligerent regarding this matter !! :(

As with The DWP, ATOS/Maximus/Capita are public service providers and are bound by The Equality Act 2010.

Therefore, if you fulfill : The Definition of disability under the Equality Act 2010, they must make "Reasonable Adjustments" for limitations caused by a claimant's disabilities.

See : "Adjustments for disabled persons." Sections 20-21 EA2010

They also have a "Duty of Care" as at : Section 149 EA2010 "Public sector equality duty."

It looks very much from what you have written that you do fulfill the definition, and as such they must make "Reasonable Adjustments" and do have a "Duty of Care" to you.

As you are stating that ATOS are to carry out The Assessment, I am assuming that this is for PIP.

Contact ATOS PIP.

If it is for ESA, it would now be : The Centre for Health and Disability Assessments Limited.(CHDA) (Maximus) who took over the ESA WCA Contract from ATOS on 02/03/15.

Whichever "Benefit" it is, I would contact them, and escalate to a complaint. If you are to contact them by phone, I would back this up with an e-mail so that you have a paper trail.

I would inform them that you feel that there insistence that you travel to an Assessment Venue contravenes your rights to Reasonable Adjustments under EA2010, and that they are not fulfilling their Duty of Care to you.

There may well be Health & Safety issues here.

i.e. You are formally requesting a Home Assessment as a "Reasonable Adjustment" under EA2010.

You could inform them that you are to involve your M.P. and seek legal advice on this if they fail to comply, especially as you have support for a Home Assessment from your G.P.

Contacting your MP

If you wish, you could also give them written prior notice that if you suffer any form of Personal Injury as a result of being compelled to attend their assessment, that as they will have had "Reasonable Forseeability" for the potential of any such Personal Injury that you will also be seeking legal advice regarding that issue.

Make it clear that you are not refusing to undergo an assessment, but that you are requesting a Home Assessment as a Reasonable Adjustment.

You can re-arrange an assessment appointment once, you could do this to give yourself time to fight your corner further.

Request that any responses from ATOS/Maximus are made by e-mail so that you have paper evidence.

If they will not budge, you could also contact the DWP, as ATOS/Maximus are contracted by them, and The DWP also have to abide by EA2010.

If after exhausting all the avenues above, they still insist that you attend an assessment centre, you would have to attend or face having to show "Good Cause" for your non-attendance, under threat of losing your benefit, or having it disallowed.

If you do have to attend, and suffer any personal injury or exacerbation as a result, I would consider attending A & E, so that there is a record of this.

How they can expect someone who needs Oxygen and a Ventilator to travel to and from an assessment beggars belief.

Of course, how you wish to proceed is entirely your own choice. I am simply making suggestions on how to fight back.

Please keep us updated by replying to this topic.

bro58

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Last edit: by bro58.

I don't know what to do, help? 4 years 2 months ago #131585

  • Storm Thestral
wow thank you I will try what you have suggested, and will let you know what happens. I have already involved my MP or rather my family have and he is pretty hot on this sort of thing even though he is a Tory, he is always known as being a bit of a rebel, :D

You can travel with oxygen but not the two together as they don't fit together and the ventilator needs power to operate, so I would be without it for half an hour on the drive there. I will stress all that I have read hear and try to resolve this. At least I no longer feel alone.

Thanks once again

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Last edit: by bro58.

I don't know what to do, help? 4 years 2 months ago #131589

  • bro58

Storm Thestral wrote: wow thank you I will try what you have suggested, and will let you know what happens. I have already involved my MP or rather my family have and he is pretty hot on this sort of thing even though he is a Tory, he is always known as being a bit of a rebel, :D

You can travel with oxygen but not the two together as they don't fit together and the ventilator needs power to operate, so I would be without it for half an hour on the drive there. I will stress all that I have read hear and try to resolve this. At least I no longer feel alone.

Thanks once again


Good luck ST !!

" so I would be without it for half an hour on the drive there"


What about the return trip ? What if there are hold ups with traffic, etc, etc ?

You could also inquire whether they have facilities to operate The Ventilator at The Assessment Centre.

Even if they state that you can plug your Ventilator into their mains supply, there may be insurance issues with regards to : PAT, as you would be using it in a Public Building or a Private Building that is open to the public by invitation.

Whereas, you would normally use it in a Domestic environment, in your own home.

Would you be insured if you used it there and it caused injury/electric shock as it was faulty, or what if it went on fire, and had not been PAT Tested ?

There is also : Fixed Electrical Installation Testing to consider, and their responsibility regarding that.

Maybe long shots, but ..........................

They do not like being challenged, they like the claimant to roll over and submit ! :angry: (I think "Bully" is an appropriate term)

You may also want to point out that "The Assessor" (HCP/HP) is not there to provide "Care" of any kind. (They state this themselves) They are only there to carry out a Q & A session, as part of your assessment.

So you will not be in a "safe" environment, such as a Hospital or G.P. Practice where there are "Care" givers and providers.

bro58

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Last edit: by bro58.

I don't know what to do, help? 4 years 2 months ago #131842

  • Storm Thestral
Just a quick update

I tried all that you suggested, and to cut a long story short, I phoned up to see what they had finally decided about my assessment, after giving it to them between the eyes so to speak. Anyhow they told me that they were recommending I don't need an assessment to the decision maker. :cheer: I don't know how long it will take, but at least step two of ESA is done now.

Apparently they got it from all sides, my GP, Consultant, Professor, Parents and MP, plus me and of all of you of course. I have to say that through it all the lady I was speaking to at the Centre was very kind, not like previous ones who had laughed at me when I couldn't remember stuff. I thanked her in between choking back sobs when she told me. Bless her she kept saying its alright, its alright now.

My MP has also told me if they try to take away my benefits I must phone him immediately so he can help. Thing is he's a Tory :blink: and he is helping me, bit of a shock really, although the cynical part of me says its an election year so...but who knows he has always been known as a bit of a rebel in their party :)

I will let you know what happens next, thank you once again x

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Last edit: by bro58.

I don't know what to do, help? 4 years 2 months ago #131851

  • bro58

Storm Thestral wrote: Just a quick update

I tried all that you suggested, and to cut a long story short, I phoned up to see what they had finally decided about my assessment, after giving it to them between the eyes so to speak. Anyhow they told me that they were recommending I don't need an assessment to the decision maker. :cheer: I don't know how long it will take, but at least step two of ESA is done now.

Apparently they got it from all sides, my GP, Consultant, Professor, Parents and MP, plus me and of all of you of course. I have to say that through it all the lady I was speaking to at the Centre was very kind, not like previous ones who had laughed at me when I couldn't remember stuff. I thanked her in between choking back sobs when she told me. Bless her she kept saying its alright, its alright now.

My MP has also told me if they try to take away my benefits I must phone him immediately so he can help. Thing is he's a Tory :blink: and he is helping me, bit of a shock really, although the cynical part of me says its an election year so...but who knows he has always been known as a bit of a rebel in their party :)

I will let you know what happens next, thank you once again x


Hi ST,

Well done on challenging them regarding their diabolical treatment of you, and gaining a just outcome !!!!! :cheer:

These bullies, as that is all they are, need to be challenged far more !! :angry:

However, they rely on the claimant not knowing how to challenge them, or being to afraid to do so, which is quite understandable.

They have been riding roughshod over sick and disabled claimants for years.

Have you, your M.P. or any other of your "supporters" got any written confirmation that you no longer have to attend a F2F ?

Hopefully, it won't take too long now for The DWP ESA DM to make a decision, and inform you.

Fingers crossed for a Support Group decision with a long prognosis ! :)

If you haven't heard in a week or so, you could contact them for an update :

THE ESA PHONE NUMBER DWP : 0345 608 8545 Press Option 3 for ESA.

Even though your M.P. is a Tory they are still duty bound to represent the best interests of their Constituents, even if the Constituent is not of the same political persuasion, and "Yes" we do have a General Election looming.

As we now know that the F2F was for ESA, I gather that you had to deal with Maximus. (CHDA) ? (even though the majority of the staff will be the same as worked for ATOS)

Please let us know how things are moving along ! :)

bro58

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Last edit: by bro58.
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