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Ask Atos Healthcare disability assessment questions

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Ask Atos Healthcare disability assessment questions

edited 10 January 2013 at 4:02PM in Disability Money Matters
1.8K replies 187.2K views
Former_MSE_AndreaFormer_MSE_Andrea Former MSE
9.6K posts
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edited 10 January 2013 at 4:02PM in Disability Money Matters
Atos Healthcare assesses disability on behalf of the government. This highly controversial issue has been discussed many times on these forums and in the press.

This is a trial thread to allow Atos to provide guidance about the process. We have agreed, but it can only post specifically within this thread.

Subjects it can answer questions on include:

• Clarifications about the Work Capability Assessment questionnaire
• Appointments/Assessments
• Travel and travel expenses to the assessment
• Home visits
• Health Care Professionals and their qualifications (but not specific individuals)

It won't be able to answer questions on:

• The policy for decisions itself (DWP is responsible for this, not Atos)
• The appeals process
• The DWP staff who made the decision
• Questions that would need your personal details
• It can obviously only answer questions on the parts of the ESA Work Capability Assessment it carries out.

Why we’re allowing this:

As the issue is controversial and often causes anger amongst some affected, we think it even more important to facilitate the ability for people to contact Atos directly and get answers in a public space. Many people have demanded answers on this forum – this should help them get them – we will be monitoring the trial to see if it does.

Of course this is not an endorsement of the firm or government policy by MSE or Martin.

Before we allowed this to happen we asked and received assurances that during this (initial trial) period they would provide sufficient resources to answer people’s questions.

Please don’t debate the firm or policy in this thread

We have the forum Discussion Time board which allows discussion of that. This thread is a question and answer thread.

To ask a question

Just click reply below to ask your question and the Atos representative will aim to answer your question within 2 working days (ie Mon-Fri). More complicated questions could take longer so keeping posts simple, with one question per post, should help get a quicker response.

You’ll recognise the Atos Healthcare representative as the username will be displayed in bold purple and have a special representative signature.
As always, abusive posts will be removed – please report any inappropriate posts to [EMAIL=""][email protected][/EMAIL] and don’t feed the trolls.
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  • Hi.
    I have been diagnosed with Pedendal Neuralgia and since being diagnosed i have done a lot of research into it and found amazingly that a lot of the medical profession from GPs to Consultants have not heard of this complaint. Can you tell me whether you have a "number" that you can relate to this debilitating complaint?
    I am awaiting my tribunal to be continued to be paid as there is no way I am fit to go onto job seekers allowance.
    I appreciate your reply.
    Thank you
  • Good morning! I've had two ATOS "face to face assessments" in recent months. One for DLA,under the right payment programme, and another for War Pension Disability Benefit.

    On both occasions I found the Doctors polite courteous and above all kind. They were never short or abrupt with me!
  • Why aren't ATOS / DWP getting medical evidence from the doctors and other health care specialist the claimants are seeing. Why are you exspecting claimants to do this? It is costing claiment a lot of money to do this, where as is free to the DWP/ATOS
  • Do atos plan on employing people who are actually qualified to assess people, ie mental health professionals for mental health claiments,
  • mazza111mazza111 Forumite
    6.3K posts
    • Completing the Work Capability Assessment questionnaire
    • Appointments/Assessments
    • Travel and travel expenses to the assessment
    • Home visits
    • Health Care Professionals and their qualifications

    To give this ATOS rep a chance. They aren't all monsters. I will stick to that.

    Where can one get help filling in the ESA50? And should the HCP receive a copy of this so he/she knows what they are dealing with. Do you think that applicants should be advised to seek help when filling these forms in?

    Travel Expenses- I was at a WCA with my disabled daughter. Parked in a car park and were told that they only pay £5 for parking. Horrified to get back to the car park to be charged £7.50, after waiting over an hour after the given time, that's quite a lot out of £56/week ESA assessment rate.

    Appointments should be kept to time. Remember a lot of people are on strong medication and are being left sitting for an hour, the decent ones usually get there early, as we've all been taught to do, only to be seen over an hour after appt time. I do realise there can be circumstances can make things run late, but do feel over an hour is a wee bit too long to expect some people with severe medical conditions to wait. Don't you think after 10 or so minutes, it would be the decent thing to do to tell the applicants that the doctor is running late. And apologise for that lateness? My poor lass was scarlet in the face and in so much pain while waiting, it's heartbreaking to see your children in so much pain.

    HCPs - I've always found that the doctors who do these assessments seem to be more thorough than nurses or PTs etc, especially when it comes to more complex medical issues. Do ATOS have any method in decided who completes the medical? For example, my daughter has quite a rare condition. When she was mainly suffering from depression she was seen by a HCP who ignored the PH problems, but when the rare condition was mentioned first and foremost on the ESA50 and the fit note, she was seen by a GP. I was just wondering if there is method in how they are selected at ATOS.

    There is much more I could say about ATOS and it's HCP and the lies that they have told, but I'll save that for DT like I always have before.

    Andrea - I do hope you will heavily moderate this thread, as I'm sure people will benefit from getting advice on it. Although, no more advice than they will get from our own benefit gurus who have been a godsend to me since I had to claim benefits.
    4 Stones and 0 pounds or 25.4kg lighter :j
  • Important update! We have recently reviewed and updated our Forum Rules and FAQs. Please take the time to familiarise yourself with the latest version.
  • Could you please describe what happens when you receive the ESA50 questionnaire.

    1) Who looks at this and how do they decide whether or not the person is required to attend a medical?

    2) Do you have certain conditions or circumstances where you automatically call a person for a medical, or vice versa, certain conditions or circumstances where a person would not be called for a medical?

    3) After the medical assessment (if a person is called for one) what happens to the medical report produced? Does this go straight to the Decision Maker or is this looked at by an ATOS HCP along with the other evidence submitted by the claimant before making a recommendation to the DM?
  • Why is it when people are score 15 / 16 points they arebeing told they are fit to work. I thought it was score 15 points or more andyou are unfit to work and put in the WRAG group or possibly the support group?

    Why do the goal posts keep being moved?
  • To Atos:

    I have received an ESA50 and am unable to write, or leave my home and have no one to assist me. Who do I telephone to assist me with filling in this form? They will have to visit me at home. CAB are too busy and cannot come out and I cannot get to them.

    Your response would be appreciated.
  • KxMxKxMx Forumite
    8.8K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper Photogenic
    What is the official policy on recording a WCA. Specifically when a claimant has requested this in advance, been told it will take place and then upon arrival are told it won't happen after all.

    Some have had new appointments made no problem, others have been threatened with removal of benefits if they do not proceed with the WCA (unrecorded).
  • Worked all my life. Paid my taxes. Now I'm old and knackered.

    Can't walk a step without pain (severe osteoarthritis both feet) means I'm normally on crutches (sticks on a good day). Have defective vision (detached macula). Bad tinnitus. I'm one of them with multiple disorders.

    Added to a b*tch of an uncaring assessor, with no reference to my medical records, means I'm totally 'fit for work'. Yeah, right.
    There's nothing wrong with me (0 points)!
    I have to look for 40hrs, using public transport of 90mins each way.

    I can't get out of my front door half of my days, never mind get to work. When I sit down, I have to get my feet up, or they swell. I regularly stumble, as I sometimes miss the broken pavements (when I can get out, that is).

    I was told that I was fit for work, getting kicked off ESA when I was under general anesthetic in hospital having another operation!

    No-one objects to an independent medical assessment. This isn't.

    You know where this post is going, so I'll stop now.
This discussion has been closed.

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