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PIP Mobility - Psychological Distress

aspieangie
aspieangie Member Posts: 19 Listener
Hi there,

I hope it's okay to post this, just looking for some advice/encouragement.

My carer and I have just started the Appeals process for the Mobility Component of PIP, specifically 'Planning and Following Journeys', 'Descriptor F', worth 12 points (Cannot follow the route of a familiar journey without another person, an assistance dog or an orientation aid)

We started this appeal because the Decision Maker has said that the evidence I have submitted is insufficient, however, I have extensive medical evidence which discusses my mental and developmental disabilities and the difficulties I face, and in one of my letters from my Psychologist, she has written:

"I write in relation to Angela's application for the Mobility component of PIP. Angela always attends clinic appointments in the company of her carer/partner. He accompanies Angela to all of her clinical appointments, and on daily errands. The purpose of this support is to help Angela manager her anxiety which can be the source of significant psychological distress. I understand that this is the case for any journey, be that using a very familiar route/destination/locality, or to an unfamiliar destination. and also, "It is likely that these difficulties have been present throughout Angela's life, to varying degrees of intensity, due to trauma in the early part of her life. It is therefore reasonable to assume that these difficulties in going outside of her home independently are likely to be persistent, to varying degrees, across her lifespan", also, "My opinion is that treatment will be focused on managing lifelong difficulties as opposed to providing a cure/complete resolution." to end, she writes, "I would therefore be grateful that you give due consideration to Angela's psychological distress associated with needing to leave her home environment. This distress is managed by her reliance on support to undertake all journeys"

After being sent all of my medical evidence, the Decision Maker came back with this:
"You said you have difficulty planning and following journeys.The evidence available is insufficient in awarding a descriptor that would suggest you would have experienced overwhelming psychological distress, with symptoms so severe that they would have left you unable to function. I decided you can plan and follow the route of a journey unaided."

Do you think I fulfil the requirement for Descriptor F? We thought I did, hence trying to initiate this process over a year ago, but DWP have begun to make me self-doubt everything and it's making me even more stressed and ill.

I have been in contact with my local MP and the CAB and they have been helpful, and I have an appointment with the CAB in 6 weeks.

Thanks in advance, any help would be very appreciated!
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Comments

  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 587 Listener
    @aspieangie yeah there's a bug on the site where you end up with multiple threads, I usually just flag them and put duplicate in the comment box :)
  • aspieangie
    aspieangie Member Posts: 19 Listener
  • aspieangie
    aspieangie Member Posts: 19 Listener
    my post went up twice
  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 587 Listener
    Click the flag button at the bottom of the comment box, bottom left, select report and then type duplicate and send, I think I already reported this one for you :)
  • aspieangie
    aspieangie Member Posts: 19 Listener
    WF2k said:
    Click the flag button at the bottom of the comment box, bottom left, select report and then type duplicate and send, I think I already reported this one for you :)
    Thanks I managed to do it on the other post, I hope they only delete one of them )
  • aspieangie
    aspieangie Member Posts: 19 Listener
    ilovecats said:
    If you are unable to go out of the house on the majority of days due to OPD then it’s E not F.
    What's OPD? E is "Cannot undertake any journey because it would cause overwhelming psychological distress to the claimant" - I do go out of the house though, just not alone - I need my carer there 
  • aspieangie
    aspieangie Member Posts: 19 Listener
    ilovecats said:
    After reading what your psychologist has written, it supports that you have lifelong mental health issues causing you difficulties and they confirm that these will continue throughout your life causing you distress, however they have not really written anything that would imply OPD.  They wrote ‘significant distress’ which for PIP a lot of people claim to have but the DWP are quite strict on the criteria.

    If they had written something like ‘She suffers severe emotional trauma every time she tries to leave the house which had led to the need to be accompanied on every journey, due to the severeity of her distress leaving her vulnerable and unable to safely cope’ that would have been harder for them to say no to. If you catch my drift.
    Oh okay. Thanks - so the above quote from my Psychologist would fulfil Descriptor E, not F? How does one fulfil descriptor F? Because I feel like I do meet Descriptor F - I cannot follow the route of a familiar journey without another person. 

    My local MP did say to get a letter from my GP and/or a Written Rebuttal against DWP. I think I will need to get this done ASAP!
  • aspieangie
    aspieangie Member Posts: 19 Listener
    ilovecats said:
    What were you actually awarded?

    What your psychologist has written does not really imply OPD to the standard DWP would likely accept though it does imply F would be more acceptable if OPD was proved.

    If you dont don’t have an award in mobility then I would focus on providing evidence that you suffer OPD and then B, E or F would apply.

    If you were awarded E, then they are already accepting that you suffer OPD, but something you said has made them think that you are not able to go out on the majority of days due to OPD.

    B is an unusual descriptor because it means that you have OPD when trying to get out the door but with prompting for every journey you can overcome it and continue without someone present for the whole journey (very rarely awarded now)
    I get Enhanced Daily Living at 14 points and they scored me 0 for Mobility. 

    I will try and get a letter from my GP which backs up what my Psychologist has written but say that it does cause OPD and this is what the Psychologist meant.

    My diagnoses are: Aspergers, Complex PTSD, Social Anxiety Disorder, Dyspraxia, Sensory Processing Disorder and Depression, and they have been sent all of these diagnosis letters along with Occupational Therapy letters.

    B is indeed an unusual one but wouldn't apply to me because I can't go out of the house alone and no amount of prompting could make me. 
  • Chloe_Scope
    Chloe_Scope Scope Posts: 10,557 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @aspieangie, I have removed the duplicate post and thanks to @WF2k for reporting it :)
    Scope

  • ladygonegaga
    ladygonegaga Member Posts: 11 Courageous
    Hi, This is the part that I am having problems with also and I am now in the process of going to tribunal. What I do not understand about this OPD is if you google OPD it is only found in the context of PIP nowhere else? So how would / could anyone have or get a diagnosis with OPD??
  • aspieangie
    aspieangie Member Posts: 19 Listener
    Hi, This is the part that I am having problems with also and I am now in the process of going to tribunal. What I do not understand about this OPD is if you google OPD it is only found in the context of PIP nowhere else? So how would / could anyone have or get a diagnosis with OPD??
    Have they awarded you 0 points for mobility as well?

    That's what I don't get either. I wonder if anyone has been awarded descriptor f without having 'OPD' written down.. that what I'd like to know. Would make me feel a bit less worried about my tribunal
  • aspieangie
    aspieangie Member Posts: 19 Listener
    ilovecats said:
    Hi, This is the part that I am having problems with also and I am now in the process of going to tribunal. What I do not understand about this OPD is if you google OPD it is only found in the context of PIP nowhere else? So how would / could anyone have or get a diagnosis with OPD??
    Have they awarded you 0 points for mobility as well?

    That's what I don't get either. I wonder if anyone has been awarded descriptor f without having 'OPD' written down.. that what I'd like to know. Would make me feel a bit less worried about my tribunal
    They have and I used to award it as well but normally for cognitive deficits. Normally E is the more common for mental health and OPD. I personally used to find that F would be awarded were there was a real and present risk of violence relating to mental health. 
    Violence because of their mental health condition? Would this be the case for autism too? As violent behaviour comes from both my Complex PTSD and Aspergers, something Psychologists have also written about in my letters
  • Chloe_Scope
    Chloe_Scope Scope Posts: 10,557 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @ladygonegaga and welcome to the community! I'm sorry you have had to take your claim to tribunal, do you require any support around this?
    Scope

  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 28,371 Disability Gamechanger
    My daughter was awarded 12 points in following and planning a journey and she doesn't suffer from OPD.
  • aspieangie
    aspieangie Member Posts: 19 Listener
    My daughter was awarded 12 points in following and planning a journey and she doesn't suffer from OPD.
    Thanks for your reply. It's good to know it can be awarded without OPD. Do you mind my asking what got her awarded it?
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 28,371 Disability Gamechanger
    She has autism, learning disability and social anxiety disorder but that's irrelevant here really because PIP isn't awarded based on a diagnosis. She was awarded because of how her conditions affect her. You definitely can't compare 2 people.
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 28,371 Disability Gamechanger
    She was awarded it after the first time i applied and at that point we didn't have a ASD diagnosis, even though she was almost 18.
  • aspieangie
    aspieangie Member Posts: 19 Listener
    She was awarded it after the first time i applied and at that point we didn't have a ASD diagnosis, even though she was almost 18.
    I wasn't referring to her diagnoses and I'm not trying to compare people. I realise conditons are different for everybody. But people with Social Anxiety Disorder can share difficulties, same with ASD. I also have Social Anxiety Disorder and ASD. I wasn't diagnosed with Asperger's until I was 28 years old. I'm just trying to work out what DWP /the Tribunal take into account when deciding whether to award or not. If I tried to appeal when I had no medical evidence or diagnoses I wouldn't get very far.
  • cristobal
    cristobal Member Posts: 987 Disability Gamechanger
    edited June 2019
    I don't really understand this 'OPD' thing and I've stopped trying to understand it. Makes my head spin.

    However if I remember correctly I scored 12 points because the assessor concluded I can't find my way about. It was a good spot by the assessor as I'd ticked 'Not applicable' and didn't realise I had a problem. So a big 'well done' to them.....

    Sorry if this really confuses things or if I'm contradicting someone  but it would seem that you don't always have to have the OPD...or I didn't seem to...

    Good luck with your appeal anyway....


  • aspieangie
    aspieangie Member Posts: 19 Listener
    cristobal said:
    I don't really understand this 'OPD' thing and I've stopped trying to understand it. Makes my head spin.

    However if I remember correctly I scored 12 points because the assessor concluded I can't find my way about. It was a good spot by the assessor as I'd ticked 'Not applicable' and didn't realise I had a problem. So a big 'well done' to them.....

    Sorry if this really confuses things or if I'm contradicting someone  but it would seem that you don't always have to have the OPD...

    Good luck with your appeal anyway....


    Thanks for your reply. I'm not understanding it either. It's good to know you can be awarded F without OPD. My Autism assessment and Dyspraxia assessment go into great detail about my cognitive abilities, thinking, learning, concentrating, my difficulties with understanding instructions, working out directions etc, and other difficulties so hopefully those will be enough. 

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