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  • FIRST POST
    • pampam
    • By pampam 11th Mar 17, 12:56 PM
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    pampam
    Question re PIP atos assessment
    • #1
    • 11th Mar 17, 12:56 PM
    Question re PIP atos assessment 11th Mar 17 at 12:56 PM
    Yesterday I accompanied my friend to his PIP assessment.
    As the assessment was taking place it became obvious that the assessor just wanted Yes or No answers to her questions.

    About 5 minutes into the so called assessment I asked her if she had actually read the PIP form that my friend had completed and also if she had seen the medical evidence provided by GP & Consultants. She said the she didn't have access to that information and that her job was to ask the questions and fill in the answers that my friend gave her??

    I said that I found this to be absolutely ridiculous and asked how on earth someones medical conditions could be assessed in this manner. Her answer to this was a shrug of the shoulders.

    The whole assessment took less than 30 minutes. She "examined" my friends arm movements and shoulders without even asking him to remove his coat!

    Is this a normal state of affairs at an Atos assessment?

    I am 99.9% certain that my friend will now lose his PIP allowance that he was previously awarded in 2015 even though his condition has worsened since the initial reward.
Page 1
    • Muttleythefrog
    • By Muttleythefrog 11th Mar 17, 1:52 PM
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    Muttleythefrog
    • #2
    • 11th Mar 17, 1:52 PM
    • #2
    • 11th Mar 17, 1:52 PM
    The HCP is meant to read all evidence before the assessment including obviously any completed PIP2 form which should act to inform them of the claimed difficulties and therefore direct the sorts of investigations they need to carry out. Unfortunately often they take short cuts... but the HCP certainly should have access to those documents... and it would be alarming that they claim they did not. This sounds like a much worse than standard case... where the assessor sounds very dismissive of their role or responsibilities...'fill in the answers' sounds at odds with the role and even the report they're generating. They try to get through these assessments efficiently and often will try to keep things simple for that end... it's important claimant gives relevant information for the various activities that present difficulties and don't allow the HCP to simply dismiss them (and thus select the default a. descriptor for the activity within the software).

    Two issue here. First on Monday call the number at top of DWP PIP letter and ask for a copy of the PA4 Consultant report that should have been electronically transmitted pretty quickly by ATOS to the DWP. That PA4 effectively will tell you all you need to know about what the HCP thought and the DWP may effectively come to essentially rubber stamp the conclusions in it in making decision/award.

    2nd issue. Armed with that evidence and given what you've said I would seriously consider making a complaint to ATOS HC about this HCP and the assessment including the admission they didn't have the evidence supplied for the claim. If the report is extremely dodgy and damaging to claim with poor choice of descriptors I'd be inclined to try to write to the DWP Decision maker prior to them making a decision detailing challenge to the report content and stating you are making formal complaints to ATOS HC (and potentially the HCP's regulatory body) due to the HCP's conduct. It may give them food for thought before rubber stamping the report conclusions. Obviously also focus their attention onto the descriptors that should apply and why... presenting any supporting evidence.

    Since he has previously had an award you may get fortunate... in that either previous evidence may influence DWP decision or later be successfully argued to be more accurate.

    Anyway that's my snap reaction to this with advice... others may differ in opinion. But I would try to get on the front foot. First get the PA4 report.. might be able to get within week.

    In answer to your question 'is this a normal state of affairs at ATOS'. My view would be that it perhaps in practice mirrors much of what happens.. but it is rare I imagine for the apparent openness of amateurism and contempt for claimant or duty to be revealed at assessment as is described here. The way you describe it is like someone who has turned up for a shift at a conveyor belt to sort recyclable materials... I expect they saw you very much as a piece of contamination like my wife seemed to be at mine.
    Last edited by Muttleythefrog; 11-03-2017 at 2:13 PM.
    "Do not attribute to conspiracy what can adequately be explained by incompetence" - rogerblack
    • pampam
    • By pampam 11th Mar 17, 2:18 PM
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    pampam
    • #3
    • 11th Mar 17, 2:18 PM
    • #3
    • 11th Mar 17, 2:18 PM
    Thank you for your response to my thread.
    Do you think I will be able to make the request for the PA4 report on behalf of my friend? I doubt very much if he will do that himself due to his state of mind.
    Can I briefly tell you some of the relevant details of the claim.
    Joe was knocked down on a pelican crossing by a hit and run driver in December 2013. He suffered injuries to both his shoulders and has had a total of 3 surgical ops on them. Unfortunately the surgery was unsuccessful and he is very restricted in the movements of his arms. He was also diagnosed with PTS and suffers from flashback, nightmares and severe depression. He is on medication for this.
    In 2015 he was awarded the higher rate of PIP for care.
    Following his assessment yesterday he has gone into a really low state and is convinced that his allowance will stop. He is talking about not carrying on any longer and thinks suicide would end all his stress.
    I am extremely concerned about him. Prior to the accident he was self employed in the building trade and was very good at his job. He has been unable to work since the accident but is unable to claim any sickness benefit due to him being Self Employed. He has obviously lost his business and without the help of the PIP allowance he will certainly lose his home as he still has quite a large mortgage.
    I have tried to tell him that if he loses his allowance I will help him to appeal but he is so low he just cannot see the point of going on.
    I am sorry if I have gone on a bit but I am so concerned. He has worked really hard all his life and has ended up in this position through no fault of his own.
    The nomark who ran him over is well known to the police as a drug dealer but he has walked away scot free as the police said they did not have enough evidence to take the matter to court.
    • pmlindyloo
    • By pmlindyloo 11th Mar 17, 2:24 PM
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    pmlindyloo
    • #4
    • 11th Mar 17, 2:24 PM
    • #4
    • 11th Mar 17, 2:24 PM
    Thank you for your response to my thread.
    Do you think I will be able to make the request for the PA4 report on behalf of my friend? I doubt very much if he will do that himself due to his state of mind.
    Can I briefly tell you some of the relevant details of the claim.
    Joe was knocked down on a pelican crossing by a hit and run driver in December 2013. He suffered injuries to both his shoulders and has had a total of 3 surgical ops on them. Unfortunately the surgery was unsuccessful and he is very restricted in the movements of his arms. He was also diagnosed with PTS and suffers from flashback, nightmares and severe depression. He is on medication for this.
    In 2015 he was awarded the higher rate of PIP for care.
    Following his assessment yesterday he has gone into a really low state and is convinced that his allowance will stop. He is talking about not carrying on any longer and thinks suicide would end all his stress.
    I am extremely concerned about him. Prior to the accident he was self employed in the building trade and was very good at his job. He has been unable to work since the accident but is unable to claim any sickness benefit due to him being Self Employed. He has obviously lost his business and without the help of the PIP allowance he will certainly lose his home as he still has quite a large mortgage.
    I have tried to tell him that if he loses his allowance I will help him to appeal but he is so low he just cannot see the point of going on.
    I am sorry if I have gone on a bit but I am so concerned. He has worked really hard all his life and has ended up in this position through no fault of his own.
    The nomark who ran him over is well known to the police as a drug dealer but he has walked away scot free as the police said they did not have enough evidence to take the matter to court.
    Originally posted by pampam
    Has he enquired about Employment Support Allowance?

    Of course I do not know his personal circumstances - whether he has a wife who works/whether he paid his NI contributions when self employed so cannot say for sure whether he would be entitled to ESA.
    • Muttleythefrog
    • By Muttleythefrog 11th Mar 17, 2:32 PM
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    Muttleythefrog
    • #5
    • 11th Mar 17, 2:32 PM
    • #5
    • 11th Mar 17, 2:32 PM
    Thank you for your response to my thread.
    Do you think I will be able to make the request for the PA4 report on behalf of my friend? I doubt very much if he will do that himself due to his state of mind.
    Can I briefly tell you some of the relevant details of the claim.
    Joe was knocked down on a pelican crossing by a hit and run driver in December 2013. He suffered injuries to both his shoulders and has had a total of 3 surgical ops on them. Unfortunately the surgery was unsuccessful and he is very restricted in the movements of his arms. He was also diagnosed with PTS and suffers from flashback, nightmares and severe depression. He is on medication for this.
    In 2015 he was awarded the higher rate of PIP for care.
    Following his assessment yesterday he has gone into a really low state and is convinced that his allowance will stop. He is talking about not carrying on any longer and thinks suicide would end all his stress.
    I am extremely concerned about him. Prior to the accident he was self employed in the building trade and was very good at his job. He has been unable to work since the accident but is unable to claim any sickness benefit due to him being Self Employed. He has obviously lost his business and without the help of the PIP allowance he will certainly lose his home as he still has quite a large mortgage.
    I have tried to tell him that if he loses his allowance I will help him to appeal but he is so low he just cannot see the point of going on.
    I am sorry if I have gone on a bit but I am so concerned. He has worked really hard all his life and has ended up in this position through no fault of his own.
    The nomark who ran him over is well known to the police as a drug dealer but he has walked away scot free as the police said they did not have enough evidence to take the matter to court.
    Originally posted by pampam
    On the first question... you could call on their behalf but almost certainly they'll ask for them to answer some security questions before they go into matters with you... telephone number, DOB.. what benefits they get.. that sort of thing... perhaps 2 or 3 questions... then hand the phone back to you.

    Just scanning across what you've written as got a workman here... obviously they've been incredibly unfortunate... wonder if they can get an out of work benefit like ESA.. others may be better to advise. It is worth saying on the PIP... nothing is lost yet and there are options ahead if things go wrong... little comfort to his mind perhaps... but this is far from over and the PA4 may hold pleasant surprises. Best bet is keep us updated here. Hopefully others have good advice on wider income issues.
    "Do not attribute to conspiracy what can adequately be explained by incompetence" - rogerblack
    • pampam
    • By pampam 11th Mar 17, 2:34 PM
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    pampam
    • #6
    • 11th Mar 17, 2:34 PM
    • #6
    • 11th Mar 17, 2:34 PM
    I think he may be entitled to ESA now as what savings he had have down dwindled away due to using them to pay his mortgage etc.
    I was hoping to help him with putting in an ESA claim once we got his PIP sorted out. However, following his experience yesterday I don't think he will be very keen to go through that again.
    He lives alone and has no immediate family. Myself and a group of friends help him all we can but we cannot be there 24/7
    • Muttleythefrog
    • By Muttleythefrog 11th Mar 17, 2:49 PM
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    Muttleythefrog
    • #7
    • 11th Mar 17, 2:49 PM
    • #7
    • 11th Mar 17, 2:49 PM
    I think he may be entitled to ESA now as what savings he had have down dwindled away due to using them to pay his mortgage etc.
    I was hoping to help him with putting in an ESA claim once we got his PIP sorted out. However, following his experience yesterday I don't think he will be very keen to go through that again.
    He lives alone and has no immediate family. Myself and a group of friends help him all we can but we cannot be there 24/7
    Originally posted by pampam
    Definitely worth looking into.. may even be able to get help with mortgage. But yes sadly claiming these benefits can be the height of disablement in themselves. ESA has a very similar methodology to PIP... different criteria but very similar process.. the irony of course is that ATOS HC who you saw for PIP.. they used to do all assessments for ESA until eventually the wheels fell off and they pulled out of contract. He's fortunate to have friends around who may be able to assist... it counters to a degree his significant disadvantages in these processes. Claiming these benefits often appears to be simply a game.. a cruel and superficial one... but certainly one that can be won.
    "Do not attribute to conspiracy what can adequately be explained by incompetence" - rogerblack
    • lollipopsarah
    • By lollipopsarah 11th Mar 17, 3:21 PM
    • 1,276 Posts
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    lollipopsarah
    • #8
    • 11th Mar 17, 3:21 PM
    • #8
    • 11th Mar 17, 3:21 PM
    job centre plus told me this week tthat I can apply for PIP if i receive DLA, and the nurse at hospital yesterday to Maggi drop in centre for advise (Addenbrooks) and a lovely lady phoned job centre plus on my behalf and advised me that when I eventually get the PIP form to fill in that I should go to the CAB as they can help fill it in properly.
    Good luck and best wishes,
    xx
    • Alice Holt
    • By Alice Holt 11th Mar 17, 3:31 PM
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    Alice Holt
    • #9
    • 11th Mar 17, 3:31 PM
    • #9
    • 11th Mar 17, 3:31 PM
    Like the other posters before me, I think your friend should get help to claim ESA (once Income Based ESA has been in payment for 39 weeks he may be able to claim support with Mortgage Interest payments), it may be worth seeing if he can claim Council Tax support from the local council.
    Perhaps you could accompany him to your local CAB / advice agency. Can he get support from MIND or a local advocacy agency?

    If he does need to appeal the PIP decision, then getting in touch with the CAB is sensible.It's possible they may have a benefits specialist who could help with the appeal.

    As an aside - there are grant giving charities for former building tradespeople.
    Lighthouse being one.
    http://www.lighthouseclub.org/
    • PHILANTHROPIST
    • By PHILANTHROPIST 12th Mar 17, 12:07 PM
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    PHILANTHROPIST
    Yesterday I accompanied my friend to his PIP assessment.
    As the assessment was taking place it became obvious that the assessor just wanted Yes or No answers to her questions.

    About 5 minutes into the so called assessment I asked her if she had actually read the PIP form that my friend had completed and also if she had seen the medical evidence provided by GP & Consultants. She said the she didn't have access to that information and that her job was to ask the questions and fill in the answers that my friend gave her??

    I said that I found this to be absolutely ridiculous and asked how on earth someones medical conditions could be assessed in this manner. Her answer to this was a shrug of the shoulders.



    The whole assessment took less than 30 minutes. She "examined" my friends arm movements and shoulders without even asking him to remove his coat!

    Is this a normal state of affairs at an Atos assessment?

    I am 99.9% certain that my friend will now lose his PIP allowance that he was previously awarded in 2015 even though his condition has worsened since the initial reward.
    Originally posted by pampam
    Some members on this forum will argue that your friend was merely unlucky and that their experience was an exception rather than the norm.

    Given the number of similar posts about allegedly uncaring, and sometimes even rude, HCP's then your friend's unfortunate experience may just be one of many.

    They could complain, but I doubt much will be done about it. You could let your local MP know - that may have more clout.

    Anyhow, even one such experience, if true, is shameful.
    • NeilCr
    • By NeilCr 12th Mar 17, 12:27 PM
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    NeilCr
    This member of the forum volunteers at an advice agency where we see a lot of PIP applicants. In general, their experiences are good to okay. As evidenced on this forum, of course, they can go wrong - and, on occasions, spectacularly so - for which there really is no excuse - especially with those who are vulnerable and ill

    I do think it is so that people are much more likely to go online (or whatever) to complain as opposed to say that their assessment etc was okay/fine.

    Of course it may be that my area is unduly good and I recognise it is a small sample but it is regular and often so, perhaps, gives a wider perspective. I am not sure how much real life and ongoing experience of the PIP process that someone like Philanthropist actually has

    I agree that, on what the OP has written, it was not a good experience. However, it may yet be that the outcome, itself, will turn out to be the right one. Indeed, on another part of this site, someone has been very surprised with the award they received - they were expecting a real fight

    Otherwise, good advice, as ever, from Alice and from others. Getting to CAB for help with any appeal is a very good idea

    I hope it all works out well for your friend
    • PHILANTHROPIST
    • By PHILANTHROPIST 12th Mar 17, 1:13 PM
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    PHILANTHROPIST
    Good attempt at defending the system Neil. You may be right.

    Let's simply agree to disagree, and let the thread flow rather than gravitating towards personal attacks.
    Last edited by PHILANTHROPIST; 12-03-2017 at 1:16 PM.
    • NeilCr
    • By NeilCr 12th Mar 17, 1:22 PM
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    NeilCr
    Good attempt at defending the system Neil. You may be right.

    Let's simply agree to disagree, and let the thread flow rather than gravitating towards personal attacks.
    Originally posted by PHILANTHROPIST

    Fine. No personal attack, there - just interested in real life experience.
    • Muttleythefrog
    • By Muttleythefrog 12th Mar 17, 1:58 PM
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    Muttleythefrog
    This member of the forum volunteers at an advice agency where we see a lot of PIP applicants. In general, their experiences are good to okay. As evidenced on this forum, of course, they can go wrong - and, on occasions, spectacularly so - for which there really is no excuse - especially with those who are vulnerable and ill
    Originally posted by NeilCr
    It is true that people are more likely to only speak up and seek help when the wheels fall off... bad experiences. However... I would strongly caution in three respects if analysing the truth out there. First... when people are happy with awards they will under-report poor quality assessments as many will be oblivious to them along with people who have advised them prior. Second there will be under-reporting of assessments that convey better than expected results - but that may simply infer again poor assessment and they're unlikely to seek advice to downgrade an award. Third... many applicants are pretty clueless about the process or evidence in their case to be blunt.. due to disability itself or for other reasons.. and so will under-report things like breaches of protocol. How many claimants (or their supporters) ask the HCP at assessment if the evidence has been looked at properly for example... in this case they did and in my case I did... but I suspect we are atypical.

    I suspect things like failing to properly read the evidence prior to the assessment isn't happening in some cases but as standard... is institutional. The volume of common problems implies not rogue assessors but rogue organisations creating an agenda and environment of efficient processing of second rate human beings. When people are quite open about malpractice it implies wider problems. This is supported by investigative exposure and some leavers from the job. One day someone will pay a heavy price for the negligence beyond the suicide of claimants that will catch public attention and perhaps force examination of typical practices. Fortunately due to my wife and a panic attack it won't be me instigating it for another few years...lol... audio recording captures that I asked my wife outside the assessment centre if I'd killed her (the HCP) and if the police were coming... I got a lot of luck that day throughout the relentless nausea and interference.
    Last edited by Muttleythefrog; 12-03-2017 at 2:08 PM.
    "Do not attribute to conspiracy what can adequately be explained by incompetence" - rogerblack
    • NeilCr
    • By NeilCr 12th Mar 17, 2:58 PM
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    NeilCr
    It is true that people are more likely to only speak up and seek help when the wheels fall off... bad experiences. However... I would strongly caution in three respects if analysing the truth out there. First... when people are happy with awards they will under-report poor quality assessments as many will be oblivious to them along with people who have advised them prior. Second there will be under-reporting of assessments that convey better than expected results - but that may simply infer again poor assessment and they're unlikely to seek advice to downgrade an award. Third... many applicants are pretty clueless about the process or evidence in their case to be blunt.. due to disability itself or for other reasons.. and so will under-report things like breaches of protocol. How many claimants (or their supporters) ask the HCP at assessment if the evidence has been looked at properly for example... in this case they did and in my case I did... but I suspect we are atypical.

    I suspect things like failing to properly read the evidence prior to the assessment isn't happening in some cases but as standard... is institutional. The volume of common problems implies not rogue assessors but rogue organisations creating an agenda and environment of efficient processing of second rate human beings. When people are quite open about malpractice it implies wider problems. This is supported by investigative exposure and some leavers from the job. One day someone will pay a heavy price for the negligence beyond the suicide of claimants that will catch public attention and perhaps force examination of typical practices. Fortunately due to my wife and a panic attack it won't be me instigating it for another few years...lol... audio recording captures that I asked my wife outside the assessment centre if I'd killed her (the HCP) and if the police were coming... I got a lot of luck that day throughout the relentless nausea and interference.
    Originally posted by Muttleythefrog
    You make fair points. I certainly don't believe the system is any way perfect - and is awful in some cases. And, yes, for many outcome is all. But, of course, it may be just as likely that those who have got good results have had good and fair assessments - I doubt we will ever know!

    I am not entirely sure where this volume of common problems is. I haven't seen that much media reporting of wholesale failings - more individual instances which are pretty terrible. I would be genuinely interested in links to this information. I am certainly not disputing it - more that I am not aware of it so it would be great if you could point me in the right direction

    Many of those that we see are at the appeal stage. I do have to say that, quite often, the PIP2 hasn't been filled in very well. It's why I always suggest getting help as that gets everything off on the wrong foot. While I accept that some people aren't aware of the right process (I think clueless is harsh) we don't get folks saying they felt hectored, pressured, ignored etc - more that they just don't agree with the outcome. And, to me, this is the real issue - while we are getting 60% of MRs overturned at appeal there is a gaping hole in the system

    I guess what I am saying - and this is a very interesting area to me - is that where I am disagreeing with someone like Philanthropist is that I don't believe HCPs are, in general, rude, uncaring, incompetent, whatever.

    But the system, particularly for those with a bad starting point, just ain't right.
    • Muttleythefrog
    • By Muttleythefrog 12th Mar 17, 3:29 PM
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    Muttleythefrog
    You make fair points. I certainly don't believe the system is any way perfect - and is awful in some cases. And, yes, for many outcome is all. But, of course, it may be just as likely that those who have got good results have had good and fair assessments - I doubt we will ever know!

    I am not entirely sure where this volume of common problems is. I haven't seen that much media reporting of wholesale failings - more individual instances which are pretty terrible. I would be genuinely interested in links to this information. I am certainly not disputing it - more that I am not aware of it so it would be great if you could point me in the right direction

    Many of those that we see are at the appeal stage. I do have to say that, quite often, the PIP2 hasn't been filled in very well. It's why I always suggest getting help as that gets everything off on the wrong foot. While I accept that some people aren't aware of the right process (I think clueless is harsh) we don't get folks saying they felt hectored, pressured, ignored etc - more that they just don't agree with the outcome. And, to me, this is the real issue - while we are getting 60% of MRs overturned at appeal there is a gaping hole in the system

    I guess what I am saying - and this is a very interesting area to me - is that where I am disagreeing with someone like Philanthropist is that I don't believe HCPs are, in general, rude, uncaring, incompetent, whatever.

    But the system, particularly for those with a bad starting point, just ain't right.
    Originally posted by NeilCr
    Well what is interesting to me... while people who complain are typically doing so with a dodgy assessment report at hand or on its way.. it is those who you prompt to get the report having had no inclination to look at it (or even being oblivious to such existence).. when they get it they almost always disagree with parts of it or find inconsequential errors at least... perhaps like my wife being wrongly named.

    On the second paragraph well of course PIP is pretty new.. but we can extrapolate from WCA problems... since ATOS HC is performing some of the assessments and almost all the problems reported exist(ed) within the much more established problems of the WCA. Investigative documentaries and disgruntled HCPs have typically come through that. Can we extrapolate... yes I would say so.. the methodology is similar... the protocols similar.. the criteria different... the HCPs probably often the same (mine clearly had done WCAs before and advised that as I'd had one I'd find this just the same.. I think that constitutes their claim "The purpose and nature of the consultation has been clearly explained to the claimant")... and the institutional failings often the same... the same problems are reported. But documentaries.. hmm I'll look later if I have time but I think Dispatches and maybe Panorama did them.

    The claimants themselves. Yes I'll bet PIP2s often poorly completed but I suspect corner cutting at the private medical contractors is mirrored at DWP... I see no evidence my PIP2 was ever looked at by any party to any notable degree... there was no contest of it even where they disagreed with claims in it. Unfortunately many claimants are clueless... some clearly don't even know how the benefit is assessed or what criteria exists if any... and some seem to take an approach of 'I'm disabled so it'll work out I expect'. Some clearly have the very disabilities that make these processes impossible or difficult to engage.

    On the HCPs... well I suspect Philanthropist may not be far wide of mark. HCPs are typically in their profession with particular professional outlook.. but it is known that these assessments are seen as the low of the low in the profession... a bit like a dodgy dentist having to take a job as a hotel cleaner. It could be a good earner for those struggling professionally and the requirements are pretty basic. That HCPs would typically do this for money rather than any professionalism.. I doubt many people go into medical professions planning to assess disabled people for benefits... so you are likely to get the dregs. The attitudes conveyed are often deeply dismissive.. and quite frankly the technical outlook is lacking... whilst the HCP in my case got many descriptors right... they fundamentally got the reasons why wrong.

    But yes I agree with your general themes and it is good people like you are out there helping. Clearly many claimants need that help and the appeal success rates continue to show that. I do think the outwardly dismissive attitude of the HCP reported here is at the edge of malpractice rather than middle of it... but I think it's probably an approach that unchallenged from the outside will be acceptable within. Perhaps greater and more aggressive complaint is required to regulatory bodies of the HCPs and the private medical contractor they work for.. as well as in any detail of contention of evidence in claim. If HCPs think they're being watched they may improve... next time I'll take an owl with huge eyes and call it Hawkeye Harriet... or perhaps I'll just say it's my wife... that should set things off on the right foot.
    Last edited by Muttleythefrog; 12-03-2017 at 3:35 PM.
    "Do not attribute to conspiracy what can adequately be explained by incompetence" - rogerblack
    • nannytone
    • By nannytone 12th Mar 17, 3:46 PM
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    nannytone
    job centre plus told me this week tthat I can apply for PIP if i receive DLA, and the nurse at hospital yesterday to Maggi drop in centre for advise (Addenbrooks) and a lovely lady phoned job centre plus on my behalf and advised me that when I eventually get the PIP form to fill in that I should go to the CAB as they can help fill it in properly.
    Good luck and best wishes,
    xx
    Originally posted by lollipopsarah
    you do realise that PIP is replacing DLA and nit being paid in addition?

    PIP is more difficult to get than DLA and i wouldn't be in a hurry to transfer if you already have DLA in payment ( unless your condition has worsened a lot)
    • NeilCr
    • By NeilCr 12th Mar 17, 3:52 PM
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    NeilCr
    Well what is interesting to me... while people who complain are typically doing so with a dodgy assessment report at hand or on its way.. it is those who you prompt to get the report having had no inclination to look at it (or even being oblivious to such existence).. when they get it they almost always disagree with parts of it or find inconsequential errors at least... perhaps like my wife being wrongly named.

    On the second paragraph well of course PIP is pretty new.. but we can extrapolate from WCA problems... since ATOS HC is performing some of the assessments and almost all the problems reported exist(ed) within the much more established problems of the WCA. Investigative documentaries and disgruntled HCPs have typically come through that. Can we extrapolate... yes I would say so.. the methodology is similar... the protocols similar.. the criteria different... the HCPs probably often the same (mine clearly had done WCAs before and advised that as I'd had one I'd find this just the same.. I think that constitutes their claim "The purpose and nature of the consultation has been clearly explained to the claimant")... and the institutional failings often the same... the same problems are reported. But documentaries.. hmm I'll look later if I have time but I think Dispatches and maybe Panorama did them.

    The claimants themselves. Yes I'll bet PIP2s often poorly completed but I suspect corner cutting at the private medical contractors is mirrored at DWP... I see no evidence my PIP2 was ever looked at by any party to any notable degree... there was no contest of it even where they disagreed with claims in it. Unfortunately many claimants are clueless... some clearly don't even know how the benefit is assessed or what criteria exists if any... and some seem to take an approach of 'I'm disabled so it'll work out I expect'. Some clearly have the very disabilities that make these processes impossible or difficult to engage.

    On the HCPs... well I suspect Philanthropist may not be far wide of mark. HCPs are typically in their profession with particular professional outlook.. but it is known that these assessments are seen as the low of the low in the profession... a bit like a dodgy dentist having to take a job as a hotel cleaner. It could be a good earner for those struggling professionally and the requirements are pretty basic. That HCPs would typically do this for money rather than any professionalism.. I doubt many people go into medical professions planning to assess disabled people for benefits... so you are likely to get the dregs. The attitudes conveyed are often deeply dismissive.. and quite frankly the technical outlook is lacking... whilst the HCP in my case got many descriptors right... they fundamentally got the reasons why wrong.

    But yes I agree with your general themes and it is good people like you are out there helping. Clearly many claimants need that help and the appeal success rates continue to show that. I do think the outwardly dismissive attitude of the HCP reported here is at the edge of malpractice rather than middle of it... but I think it's probably an approach that unchallenged from the outside will be acceptable within. Perhaps greater and more aggressive complaint is required to regulatory bodies of the HCPs and the private medical contractor they work for.. as well as in any detail of contention of evidence in claim. If HCPs think they're being watched they may improve... next time I'll take an owl with huge eyes and call it Hawkeye Harriet... or perhaps I'll just say it's my wife... that should set things off on the right foot.
    Originally posted by Muttleythefrog
    I did a long reply agreeing and disagreeing with you. However, although I normally disagree with Philanthropist he is right about derailing this thread

    So - if you did want to continue this perhaps we could go to pm
    • Penitent
    • By Penitent 12th Mar 17, 4:19 PM
    • 673 Posts
    • 1,800 Thanks
    Penitent
    Many of those that we see are at the appeal stage. I do have to say that, quite often, the PIP2 hasn't been filled in very well. It's why I always suggest getting help as that gets everything off on the wrong foot. While I accept that some people aren't aware of the right process (I think clueless is harsh) we don't get folks saying they felt hectored, pressured, ignored etc - more that they just don't agree with the outcome. And, to me, this is the real issue - while we are getting 60% of MRs overturned at appeal there is a gaping hole in the system
    Originally posted by NeilCr
    If a significant number of people are struggling to fill the form in properly and need to seek professional help to do so, isn't that in itself a failing in the system? What I mean is, should the form be something that you need professional help with or should it be made more accessible?
    • NeilCr
    • By NeilCr 12th Mar 17, 4:30 PM
    • 758 Posts
    • 758 Thanks
    NeilCr
    If a significant number of people are struggling to fill the form in properly and need to seek professional help to do so, isn't that in itself a failing in the system? What I mean is, should the form be something that you need professional help with or should it be made more accessible?
    Originally posted by Penitent
    Not sure we are "professional" but we generally know what we are doing

    But, yes, it's a problem. And I certainly think it's more user friendly than the DLA form

    Don't know the answer to be frank. Getting a balance between a form that gets the information needed and that is user friendly sure isn't easy. I guess there is a lot of good information out there about how to complete the form - CAB, BenefitandWorks etc - perhaps there is something about pointing people in the right direction for help?
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