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Need advice after awful pip assessor experience

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LisaRose909
LisaRose909 Community member Posts: 10 Listener
Hi was hoping for some advice and support. Sorry if this is long winded but feeling really upset about what's gone on. I have ME , fibromyalgia, vertigo ,depression, anxiety and PTSD and the most serious thing I contend with are chronic hemiplegic migraines which mimic stroke . I've unfortunately had some bad luck and ended up with a terrible assessor, firstly she did not understand what a migraine Aura was which definitely meant she was not qualified to assess me for my rare migraine condition. Long story short I got my report back , it's full of lies and she shows no medical understanding of any of my conditions , my ME has been totally discounted because I didn't yawn in the assessment, my hemiplegic migraines which cause me to have stroke symptoms and cause me to collapse and not be able to get up for up to 8 hours have also been discounted, she said because only one side of my body is paralysed I can apparently use the other to cook and do stuff! Totally not getting that the symptoms make me very unwell and I can't even get up or speak during an attack. During the assessment I was told off a number of times , told to stop elaborating when I was trying to explain further on the distressful impact my conditions have and I was snapped at when she didn't get the answers that would help her to mark me down but then would go and lie regardless on the report stating things I never said to get the mark down to zero when I definitely should of got points .I also got zero for mobility despite having many days I'm totally incapacitated and I've been too scared to go anywhere on my own incase of an attack for the past 5 years. There's also many more lies on the report...made up answers for questions she never asked .The worst and most insulting things though is when I said my migraines and poor quality of life make me suicidal I was asked why I hadn't killed myself yet, and when I told her my migraines confine me to my sofa and I can't get up she wrote my hobby Is lieing on the sofa all day! Like I choose to be stuck there! I mean it's absolutely diabolically shocking :(  how normal is this kind of experience? It's really knocked it out of me and feel so lost right now...can anyone advise too please is it advisable to go in full throttle on the MR and explain the incompetence of the assessor and all these mistakes? or do they not take kindly of you accusing them of lieing? Thanks, Lisa.

Comments

  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 56,946 Disability Gamechanger
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    I responded to you on your other thread but when I just looked I’m rather confused why I did that on that thread. 

    I’ll copy and paste my response here.

    It happens unfortunately. The assessor doesn't have to have any knowledge of any specific medical conditions because PIP isn't awarded based on any diagnosis. The assessment process is for them to gather more evidence to support your claim. The report will be their opinion based on everything you wrote in the form, any additional evidence you sent and what you said during the assessment. It's not for them to write word for word everything you said. 

    Have you had the decision yet or just the report? Sorry if I missed that but found what you wrote difficult to follow without paragraphs. If you haven't yet had the decision you will need to wait for that before requesting the MR.

    You should put the request in writing stating where and why you think you should have scored those points. It's fine to point out 3 or 3 errors and/or contradictions in the report but then put it to one side and forget about it. Concentrating wholly on that will not get you a PIP award.

    When you filled out the form if you didn't give a couple of real world examples of the difficulties you had  the last time you attempted each descriptor that applies to you then you should do that now. Include detailed information such as where you were, what exactly happened, did anyone see it and what the consequences were. You should aim for at least half an A4 side of paper per descriptor that applies.

     The most likely outcome of the MR will be the decision doesn't change because only about 23% of them do. If this happens you can proceed to Tribunal. 
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • WhatThe
    WhatThe Community member, Scope Member Posts: 1,233 Pioneering
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    Hi Lisa, that sounds truly horrific. Completing a health questionnaire is itself distressing enough without the interrogation from someone untrained to deal with mental health conditions. 

    If these HCP's are only paid for a completed assessment then claimants' welfare is the least of their concerns. Very few are qualified in the medical conditions they assess never mind mental health. 

    The interview is computer-guided so they listen for key words from you, enter that information and move on to the next question. That's why she became impatient when you tried to elaborate on your answers (not that you deserved it!). They effectively get to pick which of your words they use to answer any question on their screen. 
    They are following instructions given to them by DWP. The "calculated cruelty" stems from DWP. 

    I'm sure you will get more responses and support from this forum to submit a MR of the decision although you haven't told us what it was - this is a formality and only needs to be a brief written request to reconsider that decision.

    Whatever DWP's response to the MR (no change or awarding a point here or there), a formal appeal is the only way forward. DWP will probably cut and paste their original decision for the MR in the hope you give up and don't receive an award. They never admit 'mistakes', never have, never will - remember also they are not lawyers! You have 13 months to submit the MR. 

    Whereas a Tribunal's role is to look at all the facts of your case; your supporting medical evidence, any previous award decisions and reports and will apply the law correctly and fairly.  
      


  • woodbine
    woodbine Community member Posts: 12,087 Disability Gamechanger
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    A HCP doesn't need to be trained in any medical conditions (although many are) as PIP isn't about what's wrong with you but how your care/mobility issues fit the descriptors.

    2024 Election won

  • Rosie_Scope
    Rosie_Scope Posts: 3,193 Disability Gamechanger
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    Hi @LisaRose909, welcome to the community. Sorry you had such an awful experience with your PIP assessment. I live with similar conditions including the hemiplegic migraines myself, so I understand how disabling it can be. And to have someone be so dismissive of your struggles is horrible, so I'm sorry you went through that. 

    Poppy's advice about detailing your difficulties on your MR is really useful. There's also some information about appealing your PIP decision on the Scope website that it might be worth reading through.

    If you have any questions about your MR or need to rant about things, feel free - that's what we're here for! Many of our members have been through similar things, so we're all here to lend some support if you need it :)
    Rosie (she/her)

    Online Community Coordinator @ Scope

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  • LisaRose909
    LisaRose909 Community member Posts: 10 Listener
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    Thanks everyone. apolgies for the confusion @poppy123456 , I realised after I posted it I'd accidentally posted it in the introduce yourself section! 

    I understand that they don't necessarily  have to be medically trained and that it's how the conditions effect us, but that's the point I was making ...she has fabricated answers to change the reality of how it effects me, saying something completely different to what I told her and also writing down answers to questions I was never asked. The report is full of lies.

    I was awarded standard for mental health only. I'm obviously incredibly grateful to receive this but I missed out on enhanced by only 1 point and only because she had lied about the answers I gave and minimised 2 very serious conditions which are basically ruining my life and leaving my housebound and completely reliant on others for help. So definitely feel there is major wrong doing here. 

    @Rosie_Scope sorry to hear you have hemiplegic migraines too! They're terrifying aren't they :(  Don't suppose you know whether the 50% doesn't apply to people like us? Because of safety ? I've been reading conflicting things, realistically hemiplegic migraines should come under something like epilepsy would because there's no warning of attacks and serious risk to harm.

    I've had instances where I've collapsed in a busy road and been unable to get up . Do we really need to prove we are like this 50 % of the time If there's even one chance a week or this is occurring and causing significant harm?. (Just to point out mine are chronic and I am getting these multiple times a week . Just having issues proving this after doctors have wrote things like she gets them at least twice a week rather than writing what I've actually told them ) 😐

    If anyone else knows about this I'd be happy to hear as this would be one of my main arguments in my MR 
     


  • Rosie_Scope
    Rosie_Scope Posts: 3,193 Disability Gamechanger
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    @LisaRose909 They're not nice at all! And it's so frustrating that they're not taken very seriously especially from a safety perspective as you say. I'm fairly lucky that I get a decent bit of warning before mine take hold as my attacks often start to affect my speech before they really kick in, but that's not always the case for everyone. It's not very well understood at all even in the medical community. 

    From what I understand, if you can give clear examples there is a safety concern, then that can be taken into account under the reliability guidance like an epileptic fit might. The guidance says that they have to consider whether you can do something safely "in a manner unlikely to cause harm to themselves or to another person, either during or after completion of the activity". 

    If you can give some clear and detailed examples from your real life that relate to the descriptors and that show what happened when you did a certain activity, that might be a good way of showing how unsafe your migraines can be and why you can't reliably do a certain activity. 
    Rosie (she/her)

    Online Community Coordinator @ Scope

    Concerned about another member's safety or wellbeing? Flag your concerns with us.
    Want to give us feedback? Complete our feedback form now.
  • LisaRose909
    LisaRose909 Community member Posts: 10 Listener
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    Thank you @Rosie_Scope mine effect my speech too and if I'm talking and I can't get the words out or my words are jumbled or my mind goes blank that would be my first indication of one coming, but I live alone so not regularly having conversations to get that warning. So usually the first indication for me would be the paralysis.

    I tried to give real life examples in my form and assessment. She completely ignored what I told her about collapsing in a road and not being able to get up and communicate I needed help. She also ignored the fact I've not been able to go on public transport since 2019 and can't go anywhere without support. She wrote I go to familiar and unfamiliar places and can follow a journey alone. Which is the opposite of what I told her and what was on my form 🙄

    I also tried to explain I collapsed in another part of my house once and left food burning as I couldn't get back in time and she wrote that because only one side of my body is paralysed that I can use the other to turn off a cooker, completely missing the point that they hit you like a stroke and make you extremely unwell and it's the becoming unwell and not being able to move that stopped me getting to the kitchen .

    The whole thing is so distressing. Did you have issues getting pip for your migraines? If you don't mind me asking? I'm just curious if maybe they just don't take our condition seriously.
  • EJ11
    EJ11 Community member Posts: 1 Listener
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    Thanks everyone. apolgies for the confusion @poppy123456 , I realised after I posted it I'd accidentally posted it in the introduce yourself section! 

    I understand that they don't necessarily  have to be medically trained and that it's how the conditions effect us, but that's the point I was making ...she has fabricated answers to change the reality of how it effects me, saying something completely different to what I told her and also writing down answers to questions I was never asked. The report is full of lies.

    I was awarded standard for mental health only. I'm obviously incredibly grateful to receive this but I missed out on enhanced by only 1 point and only because she had lied about the answers I gave and minimised 2 very serious conditions which are basically ruining my life and leaving my housebound and completely reliant on others for help. So definitely feel there is major wrong doing here. 

    @Rosie_Scope sorry to hear you have hemiplegic migraines too! They're terrifying aren't they :(  Don't suppose you know whether the 50% doesn't apply to people like us? Because of safety ? I've been reading conflicting things, realistically hemiplegic migraines should come under something like epilepsy would because there's no warning of attacks and serious risk to harm.

    I've had instances where I've collapsed in a busy road and been unable to get up . Do we really need to prove we are like this 50 % of the time If there's even one chance a week or this is occurring and causing significant harm?. (Just to point out mine are chronic and I am getting these multiple times a week . Just having issues proving this after doctors have wrote things like she gets them at least twice a week rather than writing what I've actually told them ) 😐

    If anyone else knows about this I'd be happy to hear as this would be one of my main arguments in my MR 
     


    Sorry to hear your being Subjected to mistreatment from the DWP. Request the Phone recording. 

    I recorded my assessment without the so called dishonest Dr knowing when I received the decision alll my answers we're the opposite not only that the CD was blank so no recording attached.  When I notified the DWP and assessments I had a conversation with the DWP informed them  I had recorded my assessment they all started shouting at me i recorded those calls as well Lol
    DWP  contacted me to correct the decision and paid me back dated from 2018 to 2022. I raised a complaint which was  never responded too. I should have taken it higher up but it was so stressful that I left it. I have been notified today another assessment is required again I will record my interview without informing the DWP. I'm going to say to the Dr at the start anything he states on my medical has to be as I answer the questions if its found he's tampered with it by not disclosing  the true answers he will be prosecuted and is libel to be stunk off 
    If they lie again I'm going public with it. Don't they remind you of the post office!!!
    Everyone start recording your assessment do not notify the DWP so you receive what your entitled too.
  • Agnia
    Agnia Community member Posts: 924 Connected
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    Hi Lisa, i would like to write to you that im really very sorry you went through this experience and i really do understand your feelings and that you are feeling upset about it 
    i wish you a lot of strength and courage to request mandatory reconsideration and for the whole pip process 
    after requesting mr ( the decision remainded unchanged)  my case went to tribunal and the tribunal  awarded me higher rate 
     



  • WhatThe
    WhatThe Community member, Scope Member Posts: 1,233 Pioneering
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    EJ, what I think of them is unpostable..

    First of all, they are not doctors!! Most HCP's are occupational therapists, physiotherapists, mental health workers if you're lucky and nurses. 

    Secondly, they can stop the assessment at any time if you are hostile or confrontational. So no, don't say anything except hello. Answer the questions carefully as they input the first words they hear so aren't listening and it will be over quickly. They watch people in the waiting room and may ask if you have recording equipment this time. 

    You've done this before so keep calm and take water to drink.


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