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ESA/ need help!

Hi everyone, hope you are as well as possible.

I got the dreaded letter in the post on friday, you know the one that says you have to for an assesmt for ESA. I rang them explaing that I re can’t get there cos i can’t drive or use public transport. They said I need letter from my doctor explaining this. So my doctor has faxed said letter. Now I have to wait and see if they will do home visit. Does anyone have any tips for me on getting through the assessment? i’m so scared that they won’t understand how badly the MS affects my daily life.

Also, if I fail the work capabillity test as I am expecting to, does anyone have any ideas for work I can do from home, bearing in mind that I have very limited skills?

Thanks, from Bex xxx

I failed mine and I can’t walk without aids, they try and trick you so be careful what you say, get cab or fight back involved fight back attend assessments depending where you live, if you fail it do a reconsideration and if that doesn’t work appeal people can help, I get it but had to fight for it as I had no diagnoses at the time, I was put in WRAG but asking to be reconsidered for support group as I’m housebound right now.

hope this helps x

Bex

You’re running ahead a bit. Think positive, you may not fail the work capability test. However, if you do, don’t forget that you will have the right to appeal.

Be prepared, get as much written back-up as possible from your GP, Neuro, MS Nurse and anyone else who treats you. Make notes so you don’t forget anything. I put a lot of emphasis on the fluctuating nature of my MS, which I think helped. If you need assistance with any of it, try contacting the CAB, they have a lot of experience of these Atos assessments, and are there to help.

Ben

I know I will have fail cos they make you fail. It is all very stressful. I don’t have an MS nurse, and the neuro discharged me cos there is nothing they can do for me, so i haven’t got any medical back up, apart from my GP. I don’t have any reports either. I will contact the CAB though. The thing is my assessment is next monday, so they delibratately don’t give you time to prepare. Also, appealing is all well and good, but what do I live on while i’m waiting, I will have no money, that’s way i need to find work from home xxx

Bex I failed it esa is the one most fail but don’t do what I did which is go alone, take someone with you, no medics evidence is why I failed it as at the time I didn’t know what was wrong, next time I should,d pass it as I’m under a good neuro and getting a ms nurse this week.

see if you can get a family member to go with you, also I’m not sure you can get a home assessment at such short notice contact cab or fightback they can help.

I phoned them this morning to check that they got the fax that my doctor sent, and they have and that the assessment has been canceled and I need to phone at the end of the week if i haven been contacted xxx

Bex, dont be alone when you get the visit,and have that person answer the door for you this shows diffculty in walking.

Also have copies of any medical appointments you have been too and get letters from gps phone your neuros secertary and get them to send you copies of her notes,then have to hand all the things that help you get through a day ie sticks pick upstick anything that you use to help you manage, tell the dr off all the aids and adaptions in your home .

Watch out for him asking the same question in a different way they will try and trick you that way have to hand your medication or a repeat prescription so he can take note of this he will want to see I D your passport or driving lience.

Tell him with honesty how you are and how much youre ms affects you, make a list for yourself to refer to so you dont forget anything, phone up the Referal and booking service that arranges your hospital appointments they can give you a list of times and dates of all the hospital apointments youve had.

I cant think of anything else at the moment but will let you know if i think of anything else.

Good luck Barbara.xx

Hi Bex,

just to say try not to worry to much. I had mine at the turn of the year, be yourself, definitely take someone with you, don’t worry if you get confused, it’s expected. If you can’t do the physical tests, say you can’t, if you are uncomfortable or unstable on the chair tell them. I can’t really remember much of mine but my husband can, and he is very astute.

Make sure the person with you has details of your meds, and your home adaptions etc

Dont put the cart before the horse honey, you’ll be fine.

Polly xxx

Like Barbara says: watch out for tricks!

“Does the stick help you walk very far?”
"How far can you walk without the stick?
“How do you get around the house?”

That is all the same question - how mobile are you.

The interviewer drops something in front of you to see if you reach down to pick it up. DON’T!

Don’t even think about working from home - you are just not fast enough on a keyboard. Remember that!

Talk about those things that you cannot do - as long as you don’t emphasise the things that you can do.

The interviewer probably has a target of “fails” to meet. If you look and sound like you are not going to be one of them - they will move on to someone who does fail more easily.

And, like the others have said: make sure you have someone with you - and that they do all the door opening, lifting, reaching, stretching, etc.

Geoff

Hi Anonymous … I have to say, I doubt your confidence. In my dealings with HMRC and DWP both have seemed their role was to deny rather than approve. The may not have specific targets to meet but it seemed to me the person being interviewed is being treated as a ‘cheat’ and has to prove they are not. It is like the opposite of the legal system afforded to people. Assumed guilt.

I hope it goes well for you Bex xx