ATOS decision - I am apparently fine!

Hi People

I have received my ATOS review and apparently I have no cognition problems as I could communicate with person assessing me and I have no sensory problems related to hearing. I think they have misunderstood and have no idea of sensory overload!!! With the greatest of respect I was interviewed by an admin girl, not a health professional. She would have looked out of place in the program 'Georgie Shore' , not that I watch it!!!

Hey ho despite all reports from professionals, I am fine. Off to appeal and tribunal I go! I was prepared for this decision as Dr Edwards, neuro specialist in London stated appeals are common factor with his patients.

Off I go now to join the normals now ! 😄

31 Replies

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  • Hi.

    Yes they are "Good" ha ha !!!!!

    I'm not supprise what the doc says!!

    Was she sat in front off here laptop??

    Yes I'm not supprised one bit.

    Good On You !!!!!!!!

    Please keep me up to date with things ??

    Steve.

  • Hi Steve

    Yes she was sitting in front of her laptop with our report on screen, my partner noted. Yes she happily typed away with her sparkling long nails! I cannot really remember the interview, but my partner said I was not on good form!

    Hey ho, more tax payers money spent on this crap system!

    Hope all is well with you.

    Sara

  • Hi Sara.

    Yes it's a tick box exercise I bet we are scored at the end !!!!

    They get loads for it as well, another good idea from no:10 !!!!!!!!!!!

    Mine was funny, I use a mobility scooter so when I got my initial appointment it said it was on the 1st floor and that the building had no lift !!!!!!!

    So I arranged a ground floor room as you do !!!!!!!

    When I got there on my mobility scooter the 1st question was can I walk to the end off the room and back ?????

    OMG that "Killed It"

    Steve.

  • I'm sure these people haven't got any brains.

  • Yes it is Very Worrying Indeed.

  • Words fail me in respect of your ATOS appointment! Believe it or not we are scored! My decision letter came with scores for each section!

  • Hi Sem,

    I try not to swear much but I think this warrants at least an ' Oh for feck's sake' !

    I think they would pass you fit with your head hanging off backwards, in some cases.

    It is very wrong that interviews are not conducted by health professionals, who would at least have some knowledge of how a brain injury can affect you.

    What had they to say about your spasticity ? I assume they have acknowledged that there is a physical problem ? ? !

    Atos gave me 2 week's grace at half hours , phased return, before expecting me to be back to usual hours at my cleaning job, in spite of the interviewer looking horrified at my zombie walk . Zero comprehension.

    Best of luck with your appeal,

    Take care, Angela x

  • Yes Angela, I was tempted to swear, especially as they seem to intimate that I am pretending to be deaf! I think they are the deaf ones!!!

    Yes, I think they could not ignore the spascitity due to me having a bad day and in a wheelchair!

    That is a bloody hard decision for ATOS for review of your case!!! Are you going to appeal?

    Sara x

  • Atos took over the occupational health centre at Lancashire County Council. I was referred by employer ( LCC ) for an OH assessment before returning to work, after having 6 months off. No physical tests or anything, just me explaining how my problems affected me. I had been told at 5 months by neuro that I was suspected of having Encephalitis but there was no real information on my notes. All the GP had kept writing on my sick notes was muscle spasms ( referring to the mad movement disorder I had for 6 1/2 weeks ) - no mention of autonomic or adrenal stuff. The spasticity kicked in after the other stuff had settled down, at the 5 month mark during recovery. By six months my strength and balance had improved enough to walk without my stick and I felt that I should try some work again .

    I was surprised by being given only a fortnight on phased return, on half hours ( 7 1/2 ) before expected to jump back up to 15 hours per week, given the very physical nature of my resulting symptoms.

    I was of course unable to make that jump in hours and was transferred to another building on 9 hours a week, which is where I have stayed for over 2 years now. As I haven't had any vast improvement physically and my work is very strenuous on the muscles, I feel that this is my maximum comfort, fatigue and safety level at this time - aside from pain, overtired muscles affect strength and balance , as I'm sure you are familiar with.

    I have never applied for any benefits, as my son still lives at home and helps out financially at this time, although as and when he decides to move out, if I am still at this level I may have to consider some additional help financially. I have to confess that I know nothing about what I may be entitled to ! x

  • Indeed It sounds a quite harsh, fast phased return to work, given the nature of your job, and physical symptoms!

    I am sure you would qualify for PIP, and continue employment. The fact you could not return to 15 hours a week, says it in itself how your symptoms affect your ability to work.

    CAB will have a welfare benefits advisor to advise you if you wish to choose this option at some point in the future.

    Good luck

    Sara xx

  • Sara You are remarkably restrained. Like Angela I try not to swear don't like it but what the fecking Government are doing with disability and benefits system is wicked, cruel and a violation of human rights.. UN statistics of UK deaths related to this evidence of a tip of the huge iceberg all effects on people already struggling with difficult circumstances. Saw the case of a woman with TBI effecting making memory so she can't remember previous and so lives in present time told fit to work because she could walk 200 yards and hold a conversation! Neither criteria relate to her medical issues. So Mr Brown with chronic heart failure is fit because he can remember well and someone with cognitive deficits is fine because they can walk OK. What a huge waste of NHS resources spent on medical reports for non medical assessor but promptly ignored by laptop box- ticker with the nails (and a fake tan perhaps).

    Congratulations on your resilience and restraint.

  • Hi Tortie

    It is incredible the example you stated of how short sighted, ignorant the whole welfare reform system is, and how the government are targeting the vulnerable and in need.

    I cannot believe in my report it was quite incredulous to state I appeared not to have a sensory hearing problem! The misinterpretation of sensory overload/issue just highlights how inexperienced miss glitter nails, and caseworker who scored me on my assessment, how they can be remotely medically trained, understand medical report from my neurologist stating sensory overload. I would not be surprised if they had not even read the reports!

  • It's almost a foregone conclusion that you'll qualify on appeal Sara, but whilst they're trying to save money by weeding people out, the expense of so many appeals kind-of makes a joke of the whole inept business doesn't it ?

    That girl would have been given a quota of how many to accept and you were probably just at the wrong end of the line. It's hideous what genuine claimants are put through as a result of this right wing system.

    It's good to see you're treating this with the contempt it deserves. xxx

  • Thank you Cat. Yes, a government initiative, which is wholly c...! ATOS has lost the contract, and now a giant American organisation called Maximinus is continuing in ATOS steps, even though ATOS is on headed note paper.

    How did Friday at hospital fare? I hope it was okay.

    I received another letter today from my local council to say they have been informed of my change in benefit to PIP and implemented an increase of my council tax! Previously, I paid a very minimal amount. Christmas budget is not looking great, but hey I will be spending less time in shops with loads of shoppers, Christmas songs, overload with visual and sensory overload. I have a good excuse now! Every cloud has a silver lining 😄.

    PS. I took your advice and left emotions settle down between myself and Alex, my son, and he sent me a lovely text this morning. I text him over wkd and he said he never wants to argue, and we will always be alright and he wants to be there for me and help me. It is such a relief, I can sleep now!

  • Oh that's just the best news about Alex. I swear I can actually feel your relief and pleasure at receiving such a text. I'd be sickened if something like that happened with my Son & me and I couldn't rest 'til it was resolved.

    Those b-st-ds can't wait to kick you now they think they've knocked you down, but you'll get any extra

    costs refunded when your claim is eventually

    backdated on appeal.

    Yes, Friday went ok thanks. They inject you with a drug to raise your blood sugar so that the deficiencies they're testing for show up in the blood tests, which they take every half hour for 5 hours.

    I was warned the drug might make me sick and they weren't kidding ; that was pretty horrid. But the lady doctor and the sister were just brilliant and stayed with me the whole time.

    Results take a couple of weeks.

    I joined the labour party BTW just so I could vote for Jeremy Corbin in the leadership election !! xx

  • yes, I am sooo relieved Alex and I are good terms now.

    Sounds it was not pleasant , but good for you for putting yourself forward for the trial!

    Yes, I watched Jeremy Corbin on parliament questions time. Hoping he will make a difference. I watched a clip on line last night of him attacking Margaret Thatcher in 1990. His topic was failure to provide suitable housing for rent. He was good!

  • I got my PiP assessment through first time about 3 months ago, to my total surprise and almost disbelief. But I got a letter this morning saying I have to go for a benefits health assessment....now given that they took away the ESA last month (backdated to April) PIP is the only benefit I am now entitled to...question is, why after awarding me high rate mobility and care three months ago and saying I would not need to be reviewed for 3 years do they think they need to do it again? And ahead of neurosurgery too?

    The system is shot to pieces. Even when they get it right, they have to revisit so they can have another go at getging it wrong....

  • That is ludicrous! How the heck can they take away your ESA and award enhancedPIP. I believe this is an error. I would suggest contacting CAB as a Welfare and benefits advisor will be able to ensure you receive the correct benefits. especially , as you are awaiting brain surgery.

    HOw bloody stupid are they!

  • Hi Sem, having checked it out it seems they are right...I was on the Contributory ESA at top rate after CAB helped me appeal a shockingly poor medical assessment a couple of years ago. What they have now said is that while contributory ESA is not means tested, it is if you receive a pension. So can I kindly pay back the money they have sent me since April, plus £50 for not telling them about the income I had (which I didn't declare because I was in receipt of a non-means tested benefit!!! Or as it turns out, an only partially non means tested benefit...)

    I have 2 degrees and even before my illness I fail to see how I would have been able to understand the system... how we are meant to find a way through now I dont know.

    I spent about 2 hours yezterday listening to lift music waiting for the lovely people at the DWP to answer the phone as I was passed from one hotline to another. Turns out this appointment they have sent is for a medical for.....ESA! Needless to say, I shan't be going.

  • Ah yes, did the letter start with "I accept you have a disability, however........" condecending s@#t. I too had my decision revoked, even though I could barely speak due to slowed speech, stammering, difficulty word finding and not understanding some of the words she used. My memory, decision making, severe fatigue, inability to plan and carry out a new journey, severe anxiety, forgetfulness and inability to understand my finances, inability to cook meals using my cooker (amongst other things) are all a figment of my imagination. Yep, apparently I'm fine too (fu#@£d up, insecure, neurotic and emotional). We may be disabled, but not disabled enough to warrant extra help. I have also appealed, good luck with your appeal too

  • Good luck to Jenniberri with your appeal!

    Yes, I cannot remember the interview in detail (which says it all), but my partner said I did stutter, become a bit tearful etc etc).

  • Hi Semolina :),

    Sorry, can't help but think that.

    Thankfully, I have never had any run ins with ATOS before but I have read a thing or two about them and they sound like a very cruel bunch of people.

    'A-TOSser' is what I call them :).

    According to their website 'ATOS healthcare' is there full title!

    From judging on other people, and through what you have said, how can they care for your health if they don't know what they are doing!

    You may have responded and heard the admin girl ok at the time of the meeting but that could have been one of your reasonably good days. They don't think about the other days, potentially bad days.

    And your neuro specialist says that appeals are common with his patients. It makes you think why ATOS has to be like the way they are, I mean, why would you want to go to court all the time? I know I wouldn't.

    Though the thing with ATOS, and many other agencies and corporations, it's all down to money. Pure greed.

    ATOS do not give a crap about people's health, they just want money.

    'A-TOSser moneycare' should be their official title.

    Take care,

    MJ

  • Ha that made me laugh semolina 😄. Yep, it all about money. ironically, ATOS is no more, even though they named ATOS as government decided they are incapable of the review. It is now an American firm called Maximimus or something like that. So yes, it is great we are payin a HUGE American firm to review our benefits system!

    Take care Matty and glad you had not had the ordeal of ATOS....rs!

    X

  • Maximimus!

    Now that makes me think of a mix of the name Maximus from the film 'Gladiator' and the dinosaur called a Gallimimus (spelling?).

    However, I expect people will be naming the firm as Maxi-minus or something similar :).

  • To all the above, as a 73 year old mother who has been fighting for over 12 years to get some help for my son (who was seriously injured in a car crash and remains very disabled from his BI) ATOS are a government "wheeze" to refuse people as many benefits as possible. Never mind appeals which (obviously) get through - for everyone of us that gets reinstated, there are hundreds who are so ill and afraid and beaten down and who have no one to stand up for them who do not. It is an outrage!

    The invalidity benefit scheme was brought in by Thatcher's government in another "wheeze" so that it looked as if unemployment had fallen. Now they are cynically attacking it as "scrounging".

    Beware of the other "wheeze" now, if they have been forced to reinstate your benefits, the local authority will start to demand that you have to pay "contributions" for their services. Even though, if you read through the government acts, local authorities only given been given "discretionary" powers to ask for these "contributions" (that means they don't HAVE to ask people for money back). The local authorities will always DEMAND them (especially if you are like my son and are in a residential place) They have even threatened that If he does not pay the "contributions" "It may affect the funding he receives for his care" .

    Once again I am fighting to keep the little that the state says he is entitled to. When we won the funding for him to stay in a residential place, we won FULL funding. Nothing was ever said about any "contributions".

    The truth is that the government says it looks after the weak, old and vulnerable because it wins votes. Behind the scenes it allows agencies like ATOS to squeeze back the cash and gives the green light to cash starved local authorities to claw back more.

    We are supposed to have a civilised country and a free health service. If we don't then come clean and tell us that it is Britain for the rich. At least that would be honest.

    Good luck to all of us,

    Diana

  • I recently joined the Labour party, purely for the purpose of voting for Jeremy Corbin to lead them. He might be vilified and ridiculed by the Tory press, but he's the only member of parliament who's fought throughout his career for the rights of ordinary working folk.

    He has a mighty (some would say impossible) challenge but at last we might have a voice. Every member has received an email asking what question they'd like him to deliver to Cameron in the commons on Wednesday.

    Best wishes to you & your son Diana. xx

  • I am so sorry you have had to battle for your son's residential funding. It is digusting the way we have to fight for our basic rights and funding in a supposedly NHS system. I do feel for you. It must have been and still is terrible to see your son suffer, post accident and still 12 years later.

    Your comments of contributions from local authorities is interesting! Today, I received a letter stating from local council that they had been informed of my change of benefit to PIP and are asking for me to start paying council tax!

  • Thanks Cat3. Unfortunately (although For years I was a labour member) I have no faith in our political system anymore. This is not a knee jerk reaction to past events, although I am very angry at the way we have been betrayed and "spun" by those in power, but I guess it is our fault for expecting anyone to "look after" us or "speak for " us when they are in power.

    I try now to do my best for those around me, in my little sphere. It is often a very unequal struggle and the obfuscation and labyrinthine systems set up to disable the ordinary person are clever and cynical. I cannot fight for all of us but I can share my experiences and my knowledge (such as it is) I do not look to any political party to solve my problems.

    Dont get me wrong, along the way I have had amazing help and support from Individuals, from family, from Ben Bradshaw MP , from members of Headway, from care workers, from healthcare professionals. And I have been very grateful to them all. But the fight/responsibility is still up to me ultimately.

    Forums like this are lifelines for help and support for those who don't have many resources. We who have the problems have the solutions.

    Best wishes, Diana.

  • Hi Sara

    (Not to worry anyone whatsoever but thought perhaps to mention I'm not fairing brilliantly with the effects of brain injury / stress at the minute. )

    but just thought it might be worth saying that it might be worth you googling an organisation called fightback they have a facebook page.

    All ESA fitness to work appeals currently have a success rate of 50 something per cent so I believe, over half of initial decisions are wrong, I believe this is an all time high if ive got the facts straight.

    I don't know what the PIp appeal success rate is but I'm sure it must be high

    Take care

  • Sorry you are not feeling great, and stress does not help. Thank you for the tip for Facebook. Hope you feel better soon xx

  • Thankyou ill get there , thnks also fogr reply in regard to whats going o n with ATOS , i agree with everything you say. Take it steady x x

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