New wheelchair user...do I have to tell PIP? — Scope | Disability forum
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New wheelchair user...do I have to tell PIP?

antirrhi
antirrhi Member Posts: 1 Listener
Hi,
I received a 4-year standard daily living award in March 2021 after Mandatory Reconsideration, principally for fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome. Despite trying very hard to articulate in all of my evidence that I was basically immobile without mobility aids (crutches) due to the degree of pain and fatigue I would experience as a result, they offered me no points for mobility (in the usual DWP fashion of not being entirely representative of what I said during the medical assessment).

I have since (of my own volition, not on recommendation from an occupational therapist/similar) purchased a wheelchair second-hand, and my improvement based on this, combined with a different medication, is like night and day. I am significantly more mobile, including being able to leave the house for extended journeys that would have previously caused me days of fatigue. It's also improved my ability in some of the descriptors, eg. cooking, because I have more energy.

I am worried that should I tell DWP about these changes, because I am now dedicating less of my energy(spoons) to mobility, they will decide that I can now perform better in my daily living tasks, and I may lose that award. Also, because they did not give me points for mobility before, when I could barely leave my house even using crutches, and because I am still ambulatory (ie. can still stand from the chair and move around to some extent), they may not give me any points based just on owning a wheelchair - especially because of the "improvement" (really just better management) of my condition.



I only started thinking about this because I wanted to apply for a Blue Badge on the grounds I now use a wheelchair as my primary mobility aid, and I have absolutely no idea what evidence they may request that I do in fact use one. Because it wasn't prescribed by any medical professional, I don't know what I would have to do to demonstrate that it is now vital for my daily function, even without an actual prescription? Would DWP ask for this? Would the blue badge issuing office use my PIP award, and its total misrepresentation of my mobility, as evidence? Is talking to DWP about my change in condition a necessary step before I could apply for a badge?


Apologies if this is a little rambly xx

Comments

  • calcotti
    calcotti Member Posts: 3,004 Disability Gamechanger
    edited October 4
    The moving around descriptor is about being able to stand and then move (which can involve moving with an aid). Clearly if you are only moving in a wheelchair you are not standing and therefore using a wheelchair does not make you more mobile for PIP purposes.

    as regards the impact of less fatigue on your ability to do other activities, only you know whether the change is such that you can now, on the majority of days, do activities to the required standard whereas previously you could not.

    I don’t think that using a wheel chair of itself will get you a Blue Badge. It is the difficulties you have walking that will matter, as for PIP. That you feel the need to use a wheel chair is simply a reflection of those difficulties.
    Information I post is for England unless otherwise stated. Rules may be different in other parts of UK.

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