An update (cut and pasted from another board where I have asked for help today);
I am still tying to get reassessed, and this has become even more difficult and distressing for me.
Last week my doctor eventually (after first claiming she could not write a letter for the DWP unless they requested the information by way of a form!) wrote me a letter regarding the worsening of my condition. I also wrote a detailed complaint to the DWP about their handling of my case.
Yesterday, a complaints person rang me to tell me that the letter from my doctor was not good enough to start a reassessment and my request has therefore been rejected. The reason? My doctor had written ‘she REPORTS a worsening in her disability’…‘she REPORTS her symptoms have increased’ rather than ‘this patient’s condition has worsened’. I tried to explain that the nature of MS is that it is not measurable by a GP; many symptoms are invisible so the only way a doctor knows you have them is if you tell them!
I found this so frustrating, that eventually the complaints woman said she would ring my doctor and explain how the statement re; worsening should be worded. Shortly after I was called by my doctor, who told me she had spoken to the DWP woman, and that with all ‘patient reported’ symptoms (ie those that a doctor cannot see or measure - fatigue, numbness, pain etc) she has to write ‘patient reports’ and that is the same in every case. She then told me she had told the DWP woman that I may be capable of some work, for example on the ground floor with reduced hours…I cannot begin to describe how much this horrified me. I told the doctor that, as I have told her before, I am unable to go out alone anymore, I cannot even do my housework or look after my family, and I cannot possibly work. But she would not listen - she had already written a fit note to the same effect!
DWP woman then called me, and I felt she seemed gleeful that she had got the doctor to say something that had contradicted me and made pursuing a reassessment or appeal pretty much impossible.
I should point out that I last saw my GP on December 2nd 2011, five months ago She has never physically examined me as she is not a neurological specialist. I visit her only to request medication for specific symptom relief or to get referred to my neurologist. I have no idea how qualified she is to make occupational health assessments, least of all on a patient with a progressive illness who she has not set eyes on for five months!
I am so incredibly stressed, upset, and feeling like a scrounger who is swinging the lead. I am not sure how to deal with what’s happening with my claim - I think I should get an appointment with a different doctor and ask him to examine me - but even then if it is a doctor who has never seen me before, will he be willing to state my condition is worse? All I want is for DWP to look at my condition again, and if they feel it necessary send me for an ATOS medical.
Please does anyone have any thoughts? Has my doctor acted wrongly? I am beginning to think it must be me as everyone seems to be against me and suggesting I am lying or exaggerating - maybe my mobility problems are immaginary? Maybe my MS has spontaneously got better? Sorry for being facetious but I really feel so hopeless.