DWP will discover and evaluate what I cannot do

DWP will diciscover and evaluate what I can’t do

The DWP will decide what I cannot do

The DWP have kept their side of the bargain. I have received a form so I can explain how my disability affects me. It’s a horror, 40 pages booklet with about 45 questions and statements to be completed. DWP will discover and evaluate what I cannot do. I am then awarded PIP benefits but its all counter-intuitive and very brutal.

What is disability?

I’m disabled under the Equality Act 2010 if I have a physical or mental impairment that has a ‘substantial’ and ‘long-term’ negative effect on my ability to do normal daily activities. That’s bit woolly. Disability in the eyes of PIP is very precise. I get points for what I can’t do. If I can only walk a maximum of 20 meters I should be awarded 100% mobility allowance.

DWP will discover and evaluate what I cannot do

My MS is consistent and predictable. I don’t function in the heat. I do suffer from fatigue, it always gets gets worse during the day. Rollators or walkers are essential aids for walking. Without Botox I would be incontinent so now I must do intermittent self-catheterisation. I’m much better at doing things early on in the day. The disease is progressive.

When does mobility allowance go from 50% to 100% and why? The cost of disability assessment, appeals and tribunals is very worrying, read here.

Its human nature

It’s difficult to remember the really bad times. I’m sure there is something in our genetic make up so that we can easily remember what we have achieved and forget failure. Nobody likes to to admit they are disabled so we develop work-arounds.

A mental wobble

The PIP form arrived and I had less than four weeks to answer the questions and return everything to them in a prepaid second-class envelope. The DWP do not inspire me with hope and confidence. They want me to fail. Within 24 hours I was stressed, worried and didn’t know what to do next. I’m sure my MS suddenly took a turn for the worse.

What next?

The Wife didn’t want to get involved and I don’t blame her? She has to keep enough balls in the air without adding this one. My local MS Therapy centre informed me that they are no longer able to help people to complete PIP and ESA forms. Add to this my writing is now totally illegible and limited to just a few words. Thanks MS, does this count as a disability?

A few days later

There is always someone in our family who rises to a crisis. Daughter number 1 had previously worked in the charity sector and she rode to the rescue.

“Have you tried CAB? They will help” she told me.

“Okay I will contact CAB”. So good to hear positive answers to my problems.

“Why don’t you generate a Word document using Dragon and then next time I’m at home we can go through it together”.

This was getting better.

I was up and running

I fixed up an appointment with CAB to help me but that meant I had to get an extension to the deadline. Daughter 1 came down, looked at what I’d written and suggested ways to improve it. Luckily she is broadminded and really does understand my problems.

Next stop is the CAB office, then the inevitable corrections. Finally I post it by recorded delivery then a two-week holiday in France.

Associated articles

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May 2018

5 responses to “DWP will discover and evaluate what I cannot do”

  1. I agree with this Patrick on so many levels. I am Dragon dictating this response for example and furthermore the complaints system is set up here in Australia in much the same way as what you are experiencing.
    I too have a wife who is ” over it” – especially with form filling – indeed I can see why so many relationships end with MS.
    I am in aged care now with an EDSS of 8.5 and and am soldiering on. I still feel optimistic.

    Thank you for this blog by the way which, even though you have decided for some reason not to reply to my posts, is still useful to me. S

    • Hello David,

      I suspect that the disability benefits form was put together by people who were not disabled which is why it is so brutal plus there are questions about mental and physical disability on one form. They have used a ‘one size fits all’ approach and this really is not the right approach. Being positive is so important.

      I am sure I have replied to all your posts. If not then there is no intention to offend

  2. Christine Birch says:

    Hi, have read the above on PIP’s attitude to MS sufferers.
    Have had enough living in this cold, damp country and will be relocating to Spain with my husband/carer. My Lupis Consultant recently told me that MS patients do better there than here in UK. I also have Lupis SLE, so know I have to keep away from the sun, and cover all my body when out. All these priorities are beneficial than being constantly freezing all through the year. I suggest all MS people move to a hot country!

    • Hello Christina,

      I for one would find the summer temperature in Spain impossible to live with. I suffer from Uhtoff’s syndrome and anything over 22C is really bad news. It gives me a serious headache. I end up being paralysed from the waste down and I end up having to sleep it off in bed. After a good sleep I am OK.

      Yup the cold is a problem but at least I can function and there is no need to take to my bed. Shall we say horses for courses

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