Written evidence from Anonymous (HAB0073)

 

I am writing because I understand you are interested in D.W.P Assessments I am 70 and my assessment have been as follows I was given an appointment for a 116 mile round trip . There is an assessment centre in my local town 2 miles away. I contacted them and got them to change it.

I have had appointments cancelled 3 - 4 times before finally being seen . On the day of my appointment I arrived at least 20 minutes before time , the 3 people who arrived long after me all went in before me. I became stressed and had to wait outside it was only then I was called in.

I have everything from Asthma to Arthritis , to Cognitive Impairment , I have Cataracts , I suffer from balance problems all of these heath issues have been I confirmed by my G.P and my Optician .

The assessments are Repetitive and after being asked the question over and over again you become confused , one of the questions asked was to remember 3 - 4 things and later you are asked to repeat them back this is a memory test . This made me feel very distressed as I could not see how 3 question could determine your mental capability , what made this worse for me was that only a couple of months earlier I had been diagnosed with cognitive impairment and I really was not ready to deal with the long term effect of what my future holds so this question simply forced me to  relive my earlier diagnoses, what was worse was neither there question nor the 2 hours hospital assessment and diagnose made any difference to there assessment of me in fact it felt almost dismissed .

I have been disabled since the age of 26 I am unlikely to recover now I find the assessments intimidating and made to feel I am making it all up I wonder why we are asked to bring evidence from hospital and Doctors when the evidence is disputed by the D.W.P.

As I stated at the beginning I am 70 my next assessment is in 2029 due to my cognitive impairment I worry every day " What happens if I forget to go?".  I know my benefit will be stopped there is nothing in place to protect people in my place from being forced in to poverty and even if there were will I have the mental capacity to deal with it.

What I would ask is when is a person considered exempt from these assessment how old will I have to be before they accept I am not going to recover but get worse.

I have only given a small insight into a benefits assessment  but what I will finish with is they are terrifying , stressful and very draining you come away feeling as if you are a liar and putting it on . The D.W.P are introducing more and more ways to make applying more difficult i.e zoom I don't have a clue how to do that.  Over the Phone assessments , I have call blocking to stop the scam calls I was receiving and I don't know how to take it off , this means I would not get the call and that would result in my benefit being stopped .

I hope this will add something to your enquiry .

 

November 2021