PIP, DLA and AA
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DLA to PIP 16 year son with Autism

ddaviduddavidu Member Posts: 1 Listener
edited May 2017 in PIP, DLA and AA
Hello my son has just turned 16 and is in the process from changing his DLA to PIP. He has Autism and goes to a residential special school in Somerset, we live in Essex, named on his EHCP and paid for by Essex LEA. He was in mainstream school till Oct 2015, missed six months and so has been held back a year. The LEA are funding him an extra year and we are working with them to extend a further 2 so he can do his A levels there. I filled out the PIP2 and sent it together with the original EHCP from a year ago and a resent review. Also enclosed were various psychiatric reports re his condition. I put on the form that having to attend a Face 2 Face assessment would have a catastrophic affect on him. When he hit his low point 18 months ago and we took him out of school he was suicidal as fell of a cliff at mainstream school feeling he would never get a job or achieve anything in life. Up to that point he had always been a good student. I called  the DWP a couple of weeks after submission and they confirmed they would request a paper based assessment. When it went to ATOS again I requested one but when I rang for a update they advised they have had no request. A "nurse" called me on behalf of the DWP and went through my son's condition in detail and also called his school (i have a good relationship with them). I called the nurse the next day because the health care professional from CAHMS had not been contacted (she very kindly said she would send me a letter to support our case). The nurse was uninterested and said she didn't have enough data for a paper based assessment. I said the chances of my son attending an assessment were slim as he has missed many appointments and when they are home based he has hidden in the toilet. More importantly is the affect this would have on his wellbeing. It was obvious that the nurse had no understanding of his condition and I expect that any assessor would also be limited. There are no physical signs to his condition so relying on whether he has eye contact etc is patronising. We are a low income family and rely on his DLA to support us when he has meltdowns, his dietry needs and respite for his younger siblings caught in the crossfire of his condition. I wont though put him at the risk and its looking like i will have to let the Government win and keep the pittance they give him.  

Replies

  • Sam_AlumniSam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,731 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @ddavidu welcome to the community, I am sorry to hear your son is having such a tough time.

    It is great that you have the support and evidence from his school, LEA and CAMHS.  You say your son attends residential special school, is there any way they can work with you to help him understand the importance of the assessment and come up with some coping strategies to attend?
    Scope
    Senior online community officer
  • BenefitsTrainingCoBenefitsTrainingCo Member Posts: 2,692 Pioneering
    Hi @ddavidu

    Sorry to hear about the problems you are having getting your PIP claim sorted for your son.
    Unfortunately, the Medical Services who are undertaking the medical assessment (in your case ATOS) can decide whether there is enough evidence or not for the case to be decided on paper or whether a face to face appointment is necessary.
    If ATOS haven't yet got the letter of support from your CAMHS support worker then get this sent off asap as this may be the extra evidence needed to allow a the paper assessment to progress. I have never known ATOS or CAPITA contact any health professional named on the PIP2 form (other than GP's  - and even this is rare) for additional evidence. Therefore you need to send in as much evidence as you can. If the CAMHS support worker is supportive and is happy to do a letter, ask her if she would mind including a note about the impact the assessment would have on your son. Do you have GP support? Could the GP also write a letter stating the impact of the assessment?
    In the end, if they wont agree to a paper based assessment, then the only compromise may be a home based assessment.  I wish there was some other way around it.
    You could also try and escalate your concerns within ATOS. Do you have access to scanning documents and attaching them to an email? Perhaps email ATOS 
     http://www.atoshealthcare.com/PIP/PIP_Contact_Search so that your request and evidence is logged in writing.

    I really hope the additional evidence and support helps and your son's case is resolved soon for you all.

    Laura
    The Benefits Training Co:
    Paul Bradley
    Michael Chambers
    Will Hadwen
    Sarah Hayle
    Maria Solomon
    David Stickland
  • Sam_AlumniSam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,731 Disability Gamechanger
    Scope
    Senior online community officer
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