Dwp examination

Dealing with an ATOS home visit

Dealing with an ATOS Home visit

Many of our readers have asked what to do in the event they are granted a home visit, here is some information on what you can do. 

Do not expect the HCP to behave in their usual manner, they dislike carrying out home visits as they have to enter your territory and therefore feel vulnerable.

They do not like to be in a situation where they have no power over you, can not control the situation, can be exposed as the charlatans they are and will want to get the “examination” over as quickly as possible.

Even in this “exposed” situation the HCP is likely to appear friendly and helpful, sometimes even suggesting answers to questions if you are “stuck”.

Lets look at it in sections:

 

Pre visit information

If you have any pets see if you can get a family member to look after them for the duration of the visit, ATOS HCP’s are known to make the assumption you can walk your pet dog, stand up long enough to clean out a bird cage, open cans of food for your dog, cat etc, etc.

If you intend to covertly record the visit secure your tape recorder where it can not be seen but can pick up all sound in the room, the same applies to video taping. There are several every day objects which will accommodate a small video recorder.

If you intend to tell the HCP you are recording the likelihood is they will terminate the “examination” immediately and leave. They can not stop you recording the visit, they just don’t like it.

Ask a friend (preferably someone of the same sex in case you have to remove some clothing and if possible someone who is not a relative) or family member you can trust to attend the “examination” with you, introduce them to the HCP by name, they can take notes though the HCP will attempt to prevent you from doing so, by telling you your notes will not be accepted by any tribunal or court as an accurate account of the event. Let me tell you this, it is the Judge or Magistrate who decides what is admissible and inadmissible in their court, not ATOS. Taking notes and or recording helps you to remember vital points or information should you find you have to appeal.

Have all of the supporting medical evidence you can available for the visit, this should include all medication, letters from your G.P.,  Specialist, Psychiatrist, Physiotherapist or any other medical professional delivering you any form of treatment or care. Have all dates of hospitalisation, visits to hospital (emergency or otherwise), Physio or other treatment or care.

Have all of your medication available, it is best if you have the medication in the box bearing your name and the prescribed dose.

Read through all of the leaflets relating to your medication and list all of the side effects you suffer from. There is no need to be specific as many medications have similar side effects. At the head of your list write something like. “As I am not medically qualified, I can not say specifically which of my medications cause which side effect. I can confirm I do suffer these side effects, which are only present and which are listed in the leaflets accompanying the medication I am taking”.

Before you let them into your home.

 

Keep your front door on the chain when you open it.

Check they are who they say they are, ask for identification and do not let them into your home until you are absolutely sure they are an ATOS HCP.

If you are suspicious you may want to call ATOS to ensure the person you have on your door step is indeed their visiting HCP. Ask them politely to wait until you have verified their identity

Within your home

 

Try to be in the room which best meets your needs.

Try to remain polite and courteous throughout the “examination”.

If the HCP asks to wash their hands have your companion accompany them into the kitchen/bathroom etc and ensure they know they are being observed. Same applies if they ask to use the toilet ask you companion to accompany them to the bathroom and wait at a discreet distance until they are finished.

Remember, this is a functional ability test and not a medical. There is a difference and it is essential you remember this during the “examination”. A functional ability test does exactly what it says, it tests your ability to function in a work situation. ATOS and the DWP have not described the “work” situation they use as their base line.

If you say you can not mobilise 50m or more without severe pain and discomfort, this must be made obvious to the HCP.

Time the visit, you can use our assessing ATOS sheet which you can print off from the blog (under assessing ATOS) or on the forum under useful templates.

You must remember.

 

The HCP may ask you to carry out basic movements which may cause you pain either at the time or later on, you have the right to decline any task you are asked to perform. It is wise to tell the HCP why you are declining and to ask him to make a record of your reason in his report rather than simply writing client declined, which may mislead the Decision Maker.

Ask the HCP if you can go through his report with him to ensure there are no inconsistencies? They will decline and advise you can get a copy from your local Jobcentreplus.

Do not sign any documents without reading them first and never sign a HCP repor

 

 

 

 

116 Comments »

  1. Hi, sharing this experience may be useful and was wondering if anyone had any advice. I get the high rate DLA for mobility and cannot get to the medical assesment centre. I told Atos (when they gave me a date for the assessment at their centre) who demanded a letter from my GP be faxed to them and said they would let me know whether I would be allowed a home visit. I sorted this and heard nothing. I rang them the day after my medical had been due and was told “there is not enough detail in your GPs letter. You missed your medical and your benefits have been stopped. When I said they hadn’t told me the boy on the phone apologised and said it should all be ok if I told the DWP. The DWP rang the next day saying they needed to know why I’d missed my assessment. I told them, sent them another letter with more detail from my GP (also faxed to Atos) and filled in a form they sent in the post. I received my ESA payment as usual last month and today got a letter from SHATos with a new date for an assessment at their centre in Birmingham!!!!! Any advice on how to proceed? I cannot get there so will need a home visit. I have not rung them yet but am expecting them to say I need a letter from my GP which I already have and which gives more detail than the first. Would it be wise to write a covering note to be faxed with my GP letter saying I receive DLA high rate mobility, detailing why I need a home visit and saying that if I am refused one I will be complaining to Atos, DWP, writing to my MP and copying the letter to various Disability groups, CAB, etc etc? I assume they hate doing home visits and if someone is too ill to get to the assessment centre it’s obvious they are unfit to work! My GP fully supports me but is there any other pressure I can pile on? At this rate I will lose my ESa as I am too ill to get to their centre. Many thanks

    Comment by redrosa — March 29, 2012 @ 7:30 pm

  2. Hello Redrosa.

    Birmingham ? A city with well over a million inhabitants, it should be child’s play to get free legal advice on how to proceed, ATOS are giving you the runaround because as you say they don’t want to attend domiciliary visits, well that’s just too bad for them, because you need that visit. Yes the covering letter with a full explanation is imperative, you need to get it in to their skulls that you need this visit, also send the same information on to the DWP as well, just to make sure they don’t try and trick you again, also mention you will be contacting your MP.
    Here’s Brian on another page of this Blog had great success complaining to ATOS using “Tracey Reyner (Customer relations Manager ATOS Healthcare)”

    Don’t mess around there are plenty of legal service places in Birmingham or Welfare rights, why don’t you pick one and ask if they can help ? here’s one here in Aston, if that’s no good then there are plenty of others.

    Aston Legal Centre

    Offers legal advice and assistance in matters involving housing and benefits

    29 Trinity Road
    Birmingham
    West Midlands B6 6AJ

    Tel: 0121 5230965
    Fax: 0121 5517359

    Comment by dwpexamination — March 29, 2012 @ 9:41 pm

  3. To Redrosa and the creator of this website,

    I am a freelance journalist and cover Atos and A4e. I co-wrote the current Private Eye article ‘charity begins at home’ on workfare. I am currently writing a piece covering the inaccessibility of many Atos assessment centres (problems include that centres are not close to a bus or train station, have no disabled parking, no water or other refreshments, no wheelchair access, centres not on ground floor but also a policy of not allowing wheelchair users to use lifts because a safe fire evacuation procedure is not in place.)

    http://www.disabledgo.com/blog/2012/03/protesters-to-shame-atos-over-inaccessible-offices/
    http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/atos_assessment_centres_location
    http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/90585/response/228974/attach/html/2/DOCwdtk.response%20mr%20taylor.PDF.pdf.html

    In response to suggestions that these centres are not compliant with the Disability Discrimination Act – Atos and the DWP’s response to criticism has been to say that if a certain centre is not accessible they will arrange a home visit. I am trying to show the reality of whether arranging a home visit really is an easy and straightforward thing to do with Atos.

    If not – then many people with mobility problems are put at a really serious disadvantage due to the inaccessibility of the centres.

    If either Redrosa or the creator of this website would be willing to have a chat with me – please drop me an email. Anything you want to keep in confidence will be kept that way.

    Gayan.r.samarasinghe@gmail.com

    Comment by Gayan Samarasinghe — April 14, 2012 @ 2:53 pm

  4. Hi Gayan, we have had offers of help like yours from journalists before and have been let down so please be patient. Joe Blogs and I run the Blog and forum and are leaving the choice to contact you to our members as individuals. Please feel free to join our sister forum at dwpexamination.org and place a similar post. There are only a couple of journalists we trust around here and they have done a great job so your offer is appreciated.

    We have been fighting the disabled access issue for some time now and ATOS seem to think they are above the Law, we know they are and are fighting back.

    Comment by dwpexamination — April 14, 2012 @ 6:43 pm

  5. Thanks – I will make a post at your sister forum as you suggest. Completely understand about leaving the choice for individuals to contact me directly

    Comment by Gayan Samarasinghe — April 15, 2012 @ 10:47 am

  6. Hi to comments for red rosa.Same thing happened to my husband .All i can say is dont leave it to late be for a medical assessment to ring and tell them what’s happening.I ran on his behalf today as his medical date would have been tomorrow.They said it could be put back for 2 weeks until the gp report and the questionnaire is put together and put to there HCPs.Just keep phoning and telling them what’s happening as we are just a number and name in the system.Good luck .

    Comment by Anonymous — May 8, 2012 @ 10:13 am

  7. My wife had the exact same problem with the Birmingham centre. Much of the problem lay with the Doctors letter – they don’t seem to realise the seriousness of their letter and just trot out the bare minimum.
    It took 3 letters and then paying for a medical report to get a decent letter from the Doctor. Tell him/her straight what needs to be in the letter regarding your illness, write it down for them then get a copy before it is sent to ATOS to make sure you are happy with it. We got a home visit eventually, that’s to come.

    Comment by N — May 20, 2012 @ 6:18 pm

  8. hi am about to get a home visit from a dr bambra Ive looked at all bma registers an cannot find him anywhere are these people bonifide doctors if so why cant I find his name on any register

    Comment by Anonymous — May 29, 2012 @ 10:34 am

  9. Hello Anonymous.

    According to the DWP, they don’t have to be DRs, they only need to be trained to a certain level to be called Health care professionals.
    It’s easy to see that these people are mostly quacks and charlatans, to allow them to assess people for benefits is a sick joke..!!

    Comment by dwpexamination — May 29, 2012 @ 11:51 am

  10. hi there,
    wondering if any one can help. i have just had acall saying they will be attending my home tomorrow for my medical. i really havent got a clue about this!!
    i applied for dla following med discharge form the navy due to ankle problems and i am currently undergoing further tests for possibly more surgery :( they declined myy case and i appealed i attended court and they postponed the case until they had given me a medical this medical is tomorrow!!! i have since suffered a stroke and not long come home. any advice is appreciated a very nervous stressed 32year old single mum x thankyou in advance xx

    Comment by kirsty — June 12, 2012 @ 10:43 am

  11. Hello Kirsty.

    All you can do is go through with the assessment, everything you say to the ATOS DR will be based on your worst day, never admit you can do something now and then, because that will be construed as you are capable of doing that all the time.

    Comment by dwpexamination — June 12, 2012 @ 9:10 pm

  12. re;home visits in oct 2006 i had asked for a domiciliary visit for assessment, sent in specialist reports [regarding faetal voiding without warning]after i had been summoned to atos mec centre.i was told to get a gp letter or i will have to appear. I had argued the specialist reports covered in detail the reasons for home visit [which next day after i had sent them to atos/dwp] was returned and i had to visit a mec for assessment. this 18 miles each way ,on the way home i had an accident i voided, in the car, i made an immediate formal complaint to atos/dwp and also under disability discrimination act [through the then drc now the ehrc]a hearing was conveaned which included atos’s brian pepper among other senior bods.[first time a successful disability issue had taken place] it was agreed i was treated unfairly and discriminated against.Todate i had not been asked for assessment since. atos/dwp in failing to allow a disabled person reasonable ajustment [ie]to accomodate and change the way the assessment is delivered to allow assessment to someone who would be put at risk if a visit was not given is in breach of dda and is discriminating against you. contact me as i also have dwp/atos contract which is very interesting and has a section on those who are exempt from mec visits, also in this contract the hcp must be gmc registered and be experienced and qualified in pathology and clinical presentation in relation to functional ability related to the medical condition diagnosed. anyone who can reasonably show that by not allowing a home visit will severly put you at risk and you can show evidence ,the atos/dwp will be reluctant to go against it and if so they face disability discrimination issues. if i can be shown how to gat my details out there [without cranks usually from dwp, beleive me ive had it ,i will if interested share my 15 years experience]

    Comment by carl — September 4, 2012 @ 3:15 pm

  13. I am currently getting Incapacity Benefit – I was asked to attend an appointment before my hospital visit – an hour before the appointment Atos cancelled the appointment – I rang to re arrange and they gave me an appointment during my week long stay in hospital – again I rang them to explain the situation and that I would be unable to attend for up to a month after the week stay in hospital – so they decided to send me another appointment for the week after my hospital visit!! So I rang them again – they said they would recommend all my benefit would be stopped as the appoimtment had been cancelled 3 times – bearing in mind I didn’t cancel the first and that I had stated a period when I would be unable to attend. Next I got my consultant to fax over a letter outlining my condition and confirming that again I would not be able to attend for up to a month after the hospital treatment and that he recommended a home visit.

    Atos in there wisdom turned me down for a home visit (based on the letter). This is the bizarre thing – I got my consultant to resend the letter a week later – and low and behold I got excepted for a home visit!! Bizarre because it was the same letter with no added content! Do Atos actually know their own guidelines or do their decisions depend who is wielding the axe on any particular day!?

    Three months on and I have just received my home visit appointment

    I am thinking that going by others feedback of Atos and my consultants opinion, I am likely to be deemed fit for work and will need to go to appeal – Atos strangely do not make a decision using your current medical notes – just as you appear on the day – How can this be a fair and just way of doing things? I have already been told by the Jobcentre that I am unemployable – so how will this work? Deemed fit by Atos and unemployable by the DWP?! It seems that Atos have the power to cause chaos and heartache regardless of your medical situation.

    Has any one got any ideas how to proceed?

    Comment by Steph — September 11, 2012 @ 10:44 am

  14. Hello Steph.

    The best thing to do is just wait until you get word that you are fit for work and then proceed from there, that means an appeal, you have a month to do this and you can get all the help you need here at the forum http://www.dwpexamination.org

    On the other hand there is a teeny teeny chance they may find you unfit for work and put you on the WRAG (Work related activity group) if this doesn’t suit you because you feel you should be in the support group then again you can appeal that decision as well.

    Let’s see what they do first and as I said take it from there, it’s a waiting game.

    Comment by dwpexamination — September 11, 2012 @ 12:48 pm

  15. Thank you for your reply. This whole process puts you under so much stress, pressure and immense worry – you are constantly trying to justify yourself and your condition – even though it is clearly outlined in medical reports and your on going treatment regime – it just seems so unfair and unkind that Atos can put you in such a dark place and make you totally paranoid and worried as to what you will do for an income if they deem you to be fit for work but no one would be willing to employ you

    Comment by Steph — September 11, 2012 @ 2:25 pm

  16. Once you realise it’s all a game, albeit a cruel game, then it becomes easier to just go with the flow.
    When you go for your assessment the DWP decision maker is already waiting for your appeal request along with a demand for your ESA85 assessment report.
    If you don’t send in such a request they think your mad.

    Comment by dwpexamination — September 11, 2012 @ 3:21 pm

  17. I had a home visit for a DLA appeal tribunal and the doctor who came told numerous lies on his report according to him Im healthy !!!
    I have chronic pain syndrome, fybromyalgia, deppression, diabetes , bladder problems Im a 60 year old women
    and my daughter is my carer.
    I complained to DWP about the doctors lies and the said they would investigate I sent in a written letter
    with 2 letters from witnesses who were with me at the medical.
    They sent me an apology but the report was sent to the tribunal and I was refused DLA.
    The courts sent me another date for a tribunal a few months later on the grounds that the doctors report was inadmissible .
    I went to the tribunal and was told they wanted another doctor to come out and give me a medical ! He is coming out next Monday.
    I have numerous medical evidence from hospitals and independent doctors, but they want Atos to give them the truth lol.
    This has been going on since March 2011 and the pressure it has on me is severe I cry most of the time . Why are we treated like this ???
    I am going to see what lies his doctor says ! I have no quality of life and these people make thing worse, sorry for going on but its true.
    .

    Comment by annon — September 14, 2012 @ 5:33 pm

  18. Hello Anon.

    It’s a disgrace and it’s being going on to long, these tribunals are completely clueless as well, they lend these ATOS reports credence as if they are telling the truth, anyone with half a brain knows ATOS are bounty hunters, let’s hope you have some luck with the next clown that visits your home.

    Comment by dwpexamination — September 14, 2012 @ 5:58 pm

  19. why ARE WE LETING ATOS GET AWAY WITH IT…ITS WE WHO ARE LETING THEM GET AWAY WITH IT ATOS IS A PRIVATE COMPANY LIMTIED MAKING MILLONS…

    Comment by Anonymous — September 26, 2012 @ 12:59 pm

  20. WITH LIEING IN THERE REPORTS MY FREINDS DAD HAD AN ESESMENT AND I KNOW HE COULD NOT WALK THE DISTANCE THE DOCTOR SAID HE COULD BECUASE WHEN HE VISITED HIM HE COULD NOT GET OUT OF BED…

    Comment by Anonymous — September 26, 2012 @ 1:01 pm

  21. Every single functional assessment report that emanates from ATOS healthcare is a festival of lies, it beats me why the tribunal service actually believe the trash that’s written in these reports.

    Comment by dwpexamination — September 27, 2012 @ 7:33 am

  22. what do you expect from cameron and his twit sidekick

    Comment by Anonymous — November 22, 2012 @ 6:03 pm

  23. I have been battling with the job centre and dwp for a home visit for some time now. i didnt know anything about medical assements or rights or anything and after being unable to leave my home twice due to anxiety attacks they told me my benifits would be stopped, soo after much panicing about it i got my mother who was my carer at the time to come with me to the assement. after 3 hours of waiting and serval panic attacks later they then decided that i could be seen and i wasnt allowed to bring my mother into the room with me. They denied me my benifits saying i was able to work after storming out of the room because i couldnt take the pressure. a year down the line after being awarded only £30 per week to live on (i also live alone!) they finally gave me a tribunal date february this year, they then decided that i was in no state to work and put me on support group etc and advised me to apply for dla even though i had been denied in the past as the job centre were nice enough to tell me to fill the form in on as if i was on A GOOD DAY! 2 months passed still nothing from dla but yet another medical assesment. ive been battling for a home visit as simply cannot risk traveling all the way to the medical centre as my anxiety attacks have gotten worse.to the fact where i actually cannot breath and pass out and side effects from my medication make it difficult for me to stand up with out everything going fuzzy and dizzy like ive been drinking. my doctor, my key worker, and my two carers have sent forms in stating why i need a home visit and they still keep demanding i go in! what can i do? am hopelessly lost and my days have resulted to spending them in bed crying ever few minutes from the stress of it all :’(

    Comment by gemma — November 30, 2012 @ 5:39 pm

  24. Gemma.

    You can only do what your doing, which is hold out until you get a home visit, they wait as long as possible to see if you’ll give in first.
    I hope you got all the money they owed you backdated ?.

    And as for learning your rights ? log in here to our sister site http://www.dwpexamination.org

    Comment by dwpexamination — November 30, 2012 @ 5:58 pm

  25. I will be videoing my home visit today.
    Let’s see them try to get out of THAT! :-p

    Comment by Peter — December 1, 2012 @ 9:18 am

  26. Well.
    VERY nice man came and interviewed me.
    Wrote lots down.
    Didn’t get video but got audio on my laptop.
    If I “fail” it won’t be his doing.

    Comment by Peter — December 1, 2012 @ 11:56 am

  27. Hi Gemma, I know exactly what you are going through….I was in the same boat 2 weeks ago ATOS rejected my GP’s request for home visit,I was at the end of my tether almost suicidal but thanks for advice from this site to contact my MP,I sent an email to my MP that evening and the next morning had response from him saying he was going to contact ATOS on my behalf for a request for home visit and within 1 day they agreed for a home visit as my appointment was the following day……I got a letter from my MP confirming it and my appointment was cancelled to attend…… now waiting for phone call from ATOS…..not over yet but atleast I will be able to have support of my MP if it comes to appeal etc.
    I am so glad I did the email, i was reluctant as thought why would my MP respond to me but the quickness to his response was amazing.Please contact your MP you have nothing to loose.

    Comment by Anonymous AB — December 7, 2012 @ 6:21 pm

  28. Just had my home assessment for my dla review and am now crapping myself for the decision. The bloke was really nice but let’s see what he says.

    Comment by Michelle friar — December 16, 2012 @ 12:50 pm

  29. Try to remember what you said and what you missed to say.
    Write the important bits down to use in the appeal.
    I recorded mine on my iphone.
    Good luck. ;-)

    Comment by Peter — December 16, 2012 @ 8:31 pm

  30. After reading the comments on here I did voice record it on my phone just incase but hopefully I won’t need it.

    Comment by Michelle friar — December 17, 2012 @ 8:33 am

  31. My experience with dwp has been going on for a year and im still waiting a tribunal date,instead of us all feeling powerless against these bastards why do we not name and shame them,lets get together and find out everything about the agents that deliberately set out to screw us over ,these so called medics,its a joke and its time we took the power back,im off to find out what i can and i will let you all know the names and so on of these sub humans,love and kisses to you all Lorraine

    Comment by lorraine nestor — January 19, 2013 @ 10:35 pm

  32. Hello Lorraine.

    They are being named and shamed on our sister site http://www.dwoecamination.org
    just think up a user name and log in.

    Comment by dwpexamination — January 20, 2013 @ 9:20 am

  33. I have a home visit on Wednesday 6th April, I have a prolapsed disc, bulging disc, other degenerated discs, pinched nerve, arthritis in my lower spine, this causes immense radiculopathic pain and at times incontinence, and have to use supports to get around, I have had 1 treatment of a caudal epidural to little effect, I suffer from long term depression, paranoia, mood swings and all that goes with it, and have convictions for violence where I have lost control. I am waiting for an appointment with the psychiatrist and feel that this appointment is too early and they (ATOS) have not done a risk assessment on me, which I feel they need to do, I’m getting very wound up and angry with this, my doctor shouts at me over the phone, he is being uncooperative and it is very difficult to get decent pain relief from him. The doctor/consultant at the pain clinic is helpful and has written a helpful letter for me. I would like some advice as to what to do as I can’t think straight. I’m a 50+ yro male have worked in the construction/building industry for most of my working life and have paid my N.I. and tax, now they are letting me down when I need that little bit of help until I am fit enough to return to work. I live with my wife who has severe complications from type 1 diabetes and we both have problems coping. I know these ATOS doctors are just out to deny me help, I am terrified of ATOS and DWP and that makes me dangerous to them and a danger to myself.

    Comment by Paul — February 28, 2013 @ 4:22 pm

  34. Hello Paul.

    First of all, congratulations on getting this home visit, I can tell you that is a feat in itself, because ATOS never ever grant home visits until they absolutely have to, so getting that concession from ATOS can help any possible appeal in the future.

    Try not to be angry with your GP, if you have then see your way to conceding that it’s not his/her fault and you can explain that you can’t help being angry and need his/her help. Sometimes when people see you are not blaming them for your problems they sometimes jump on your side, you cant lose anything by trying to be a little more humble, of course you never humble yourself to the likes of ATOS that’s different.

    So what’s the worst that can happen when the ATOS grim reaper comes to visit, well the worst that can happen is you are forced to appeal, they are doing that to 80/90 percent of people any way, and is all a sham, the appeal courts all know it’s a sham.

    You can get massive help here at our sister site on how to deal with ATOS and the DWP, this is a free site, and a a site that will show you amongst other things that you are definitely not alone.

    Comment by dwpexamination — March 1, 2013 @ 8:19 am

  35. im in the process of requesting a home visit ive written to my doctor as i cannot travel the distance, i have severe osteoarthritis my feet are painful to the extent i cannot get my shoes on , theres many other problems too numerous to mention, im 55 and dont really hold out much hope of getting one, this is all about hoping you will give in and sign on,basically.but not without a fight im not, just hope my gp helps me get to where i want this damn nightmare to finish,…. in the support group, i really dont have the strength to carry on some days with the pain im dealing with but then ATOS are heartless anyway. good luck to everybody here.

    Comment by brenda frost — March 7, 2013 @ 3:34 pm

  36. Thanks Brenda…fighting back is all we have left.

    Comment by dwpexamination — March 7, 2013 @ 7:00 pm

  37. Do ATOS have extra fire insurance?

    Comment by Peter — March 7, 2013 @ 7:20 pm

  38. That’s what Goering said about the Reichstag in 1933.

    Comment by dwpexamination — March 7, 2013 @ 10:10 pm

  39. Thank you for your Kind reply, I haven’t bit back at the doctor, although I only see him when I’m not at my worse, but it seems he is the last to know what is happening, as decisions by the pain clinic tend not to be available to him with the immediacy I need and he thinks I am just after ever stronger pain killers, which is true to a certain extent, but he has never seen me when I am on all fours, crying in utter pain unable to move and pissing myself, I asked for a few stronger painkillers for when I am like this, which is not every day thankfully, but to no avail, instead upping my normal painkillers(their effectiveness does fade), my next appointment will be made with a different doctor at the same surgery, for a different opinion; I will let you know how I get on with ATOS, I did mistakenly put the wrong date in my original post, it should have been yesterday 6th March, but I had rung them to cancel the appointment due to very important appointment my wife had at the same time, I could not accept the appointment if I am alone as I cannot always get to the door and due to paranoia would not have answered it anyway! I now am in no mans lands where ATOS say I have turned down two appointments as they gave me two days notice to go to their offices in another town for the first original appointment, I said that was unacceptable and need a home visit explaining why and they are counting that as two appointments. DWP have said during a subsequent phone call to me that they will ring them, but am sitting here with no appointment at all at the moment waiting for them to contact me in writing and too worried to contact them by phone. I have never known anything like this, what a farce, I’m really confused, and have started having migraines again despite taking medication to prevent this !! Paul

    Comment by Paul — March 7, 2013 @ 10:15 pm

  40. Hi Brenda, thanks for taking the time to reply to my post, I really hope your condition improves to the level you wish for, pain is such a cruel and limiting factor, something ATOS seems incapable of understanding as I don’t believe they employ people like you, me and a lot other people in dire need and constant pain. I believe ATOS will slowly unravel and be exposed as the death dealing, money focused charlatans that they are. There are already ex employees spilling the beans on what goes on behind closed doors, they I hope will be their downfall, that and a flood of litigation on discrimination grounds destroying this corporate monster; I for one will not give up, but some days like you I feel helpless and at the mercy of the system, I hope by talking on groups like this we can all have some hope and keep our minds focused even if it is through the haze of medication and pain! Best wishes. Paul

    Comment by Paul — March 7, 2013 @ 10:52 pm

  41. I attended an apeal for a friend, against ATOS ;last week.
    The “doctor” said that pain is not accepted as a factor in stopping you from working !!!

    Comment by Peter — March 8, 2013 @ 1:09 am

  42. Peter and Paul.

    You better get yourself switched on my friends, because that’s what they’re saying and they have been saying it for at least four years, where have you been ?.

    Google in the ”PSYCHOSOCIAL MODEL” and Professor Mansel Aylward. What you read will shock you.

    And go to our sister site http://www.dwpexamination.org and read MO STEWARTS investigations of UNUM insurance, the American insurance company who refuse to pay out on health insurance, and who are zealous followers of the PSYCHOSOCIAL MODEL OF THOUGHT, which is that pain is all in the mind.

    There are other things you can say at a tribunal, and talking about pain will not get you or your friend ESA.

    Comment by dwpexamination — March 8, 2013 @ 8:08 am

  43. Well, I “passed” my ATOS home visit for DLA just this year and my main problem is pain.

    Comment by Peter — March 8, 2013 @ 10:55 am

  44. Wait till the next assessment Peter..!!
    Pain is no excuse Peter according to these bozos, luck was with you this time thank god. Get yourself acquainted with the psychosocial method of thinking and avoid using just the word pain, EXTREME DISCOMFORT is one alternative, and there are others.

    Comment by dwpexamination — March 8, 2013 @ 11:05 am

  45. Address Here
    Date Here
    National Insurance Number Here
    To whom it may concern:
    Re: Recording of my face-to-face medical assessment
    I wish my forthcoming face-to-face capability assessment to be recorded and to be provided with a copy of that recording.
    I understand that Atos will provide the equipment and carry out the recording on my behalf. This was confirmed by the DWP Central FOI Team in a response dated 24 January 2012, your reference: VTR 2714-3878. This stated that:
    “Provisionis currently available for the recording of assessments upon request by the claimant to the office which administers the claim for benefit and Atos Healthcare. In these circumstances, Atos Healthcare will provide the requisite audio recording equipment, which will provide each party with a recording of the medical assessmentt.”
    The correspondence is available online at:
    http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/revised_wca_handbook_revised_edi#incoming-246487
    In addition, in a private members debate about the work capability assessment on 1st February 2012, employment minister Chris Grayling stated:
    “On audio recording, we will offer everyone who wants it the opportunity to have their session recorded. We decided not to implement universal recording because, based on the trial experience, people did not want it. Few people wanted their sessions recorded, and some said that they definitely did not. We decided therefore to offer recording as an option to those who want it. That seems entirely sensible.”
    I would therefore be grateful if you would ensure that the facilities are available for my assessment to be recorded. If for any reason this is not possible, I wish to be provided with notice and an explanation prior to the date of my assessment.
    Please arrange a home medical with a recording and that way there can be no more misunderstandings

    Yours sincerely

    Comment by Anonymous — March 14, 2013 @ 1:28 pm

  46. Address Here
    Date Here
    National Insurance Number Here
    To whom it may concern:
    Re: Recording of my face-to-face medical assessment
    I wish my forthcoming face-to-face capability assessment to be recorded and to be provided with a copy of that recording.
    I understand that Atos will provide the equipment and carry out the recording on my behalf. This was confirmed by the DWP Central FOI Team in a response dated 24 January 2012, your reference: VTR 2714-3878. This stated that:
    “Provisionis currently available for the recording of assessments upon request by the claimant to the office which administers the claim for benefit and Atos Healthcare. In these circumstances, Atos Healthcare will provide the requisite audio recording equipment, which will provide each party with a recording of the medical assessmentt.”
    The correspondence is available online at:
    http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/revised_wca_handbook_revised_edi#incoming-246487
    In addition, in a private members debate about the work capability assessment on 1st February 2012, employment minister Chris Grayling stated:
    “On audio recording, we will offer everyone who wants it the opportunity to have their session recorded. We decided not to implement universal recording because, based on the trial experience, people did not want it. Few people wanted their sessions recorded, and some said that they definitely did not. We decided therefore to offer recording as an option to those who want it. That seems entirely sensible.”
    I would therefore be grateful if you would ensure that the facilities are available for my assessment to be recorded. If for any reason this is not possible, I wish to be provided with notice and an explanation prior to the date of my assessment.
    Please arrange a home medical with a recording and that way there can be no more misunderstandings

    Yours sincerely

    Comment by xxxxx — March 14, 2013 @ 1:29 pm

  47. I didn’t get a choice of visit they just told me they would be turning up on a certain date and time, which is a Sunday…to my home. Is this usual?

    Comment by Zordana — March 16, 2013 @ 9:59 pm

  48. Is there anywhere online that you can find advice on how to explain your problems to ATOS in a way they are better accepted?

    Comment by Peter — March 16, 2013 @ 10:14 pm

  49. Re Home visit.
    I was happy to have one as they could see how I live.
    Untidy house and unfinnished decorating, due to my health problems.

    Comment by Peter — March 16, 2013 @ 10:16 pm

  50. Hello Peter.

    You can get help on what type of questions are asked and how to answer them here at our sister site
    http://www.dwpexamination.org
    Bear in mind Peter, the questions ATOS ask vary from person to person and depends on your health problem/s but the bottom line is they are all basic questions.
    For instance a person with mental health problems may be asked if they can visit a strange place on their own, or if they can cook a meal without help from another person and so on.

    Comment by dwpexamination — March 17, 2013 @ 6:29 am

  51. Zordana.

    Yes it’s not unusual, ATOS are working all hours of the day and every day to cope with their ever increasing work load, I myself attended an assessment at one of their centres on a Sunday.
    I did receive a choice of days though, I suppose they reason that since they are coming to you then it should be their choice, that doesn’t mean you have to accept it though, if your not happy then there’s no reason why you cannot request another day during the week.

    Comment by dwpexamination — March 17, 2013 @ 6:41 am

  52. That’s what they did to me to. To be fair the bloke that came out was nice but they still took all my care allowance off me and my decision statement was a load of crap as half the information was wrong so I’m currently appealing.

    Comment by Michelle friar — March 17, 2013 @ 8:51 pm

  53. Actually they’re all nice Michelle, especially on home visits, their only remit is to get their bonus at the end of the day.
    They should all be dragged out in front of their families put up against the nearest wall and shot.

    Comment by dwpexamination — March 18, 2013 @ 12:10 am

  54. Sounds ok to me, Jeremy.

    Comment by Peter — March 18, 2013 @ 1:22 pm

  55. He He. Then send their body parts to the four corners of Britain as a warning to others.

    Comment by dwpexamination — March 18, 2013 @ 1:55 pm

  56. [...] You may be able to have an assessor visit your home, depending on your condition.  There is excellent information on home visits here: http://dwpexamination.wordpress.com/dealing-with-an-atos-home-visit/ [...]

    Pingback by Useful information for ESA claimants and with Work Capability Assessments | kickingtoryassonwelfare — March 24, 2013 @ 9:03 pm

  57. I’m trying to get a home visit, or rather, my partner is trying my behalf, as I suffer from severe anxiety. I put on my original form that I would not be able to attend a medical and would require a home visit, but they sent me an appointment anyway. My partner called them and said I would not be able to attend at a medical centre, and was told to ask the GP to fax over a letter saying I needed a home visit. My GP has told us that they don’t do that, and that ATOS have to request the information from them. So back to ATOS, they say no, we need to request it be faxed over… So we’re stuck between a rock and a hard place, both sides telling us it’s the other’s responsibility. Meanwhile, time is running out before the medical I’m supposed to attend or have my benefits stopped. They say I’m going to have to pay my GP to write a report, but not only can we not afford it (2 of us living on my C-ESA), but there is also not enough time. Now we don’t know what to do.

    Comment by Emily — April 18, 2013 @ 5:16 pm

  58. Hello Emily.

    Both are wrong, any of them can make the request, ATOS can ask your GP but wont, and your GP can fax it over but wont, I can see why ATOS will not ask, but I don’t see any justification why your GP can’t just fax it over, that’s why they have a reception, that’s what the receptionist is/are paid for.
    ATOS will not ask because they don’t want to grant a home visit, so it’s your GP or nothing, it’s your move.

    Comment by dwpexamination — April 18, 2013 @ 5:49 pm

  59. Hi there – I am a freelance journalist with a background in law and I write about disability. Has anyone who has had problems because their Atos centre is inaccessible considered contacting the Equality and Human Rights Commission to see if they will run a legal case against Atos for you (on the basis that Atos have breached the Equality Act duty on public bodies to make ‘reasonable adjustments’ for disabled people using their centres?)

    See below link – I’ve also written a piece for next week’s private eye on this. Someone recently sued Atos who initially tried to argue that they are not bound by the relevant disability discrimination laws which apply to bodies on the basis that they are a private contractor. They backed down but without admitting liability (which could have sparked off lots more claims).

    Further cases could be really embarrassing for Atos and shame them and the DWP into paying to make the buildings more accessible.

    http://welfarenewsservice.com/atos-in-2k-disability-discrimination-settlement/#.UXuRmEpkiSo

    Comment by gayansamarasinghe — April 27, 2013 @ 9:03 am

  60. If they try to argue they don’t have a legal duty to make reasonable adjustments for disabled people on the basis that they are a contractor – that’s really bad PR for them, on the other hand if they accept they have this legal duty – they open themselves up to be sued by lots and lots of people. Might be good to put Atos between a rock and a hard place for a change

    Comment by gayansamarasinghe — April 27, 2013 @ 9:05 am

  61. Could you pop over to our sister site and ask our members on the ATOS examination centres page (Link Below), I’m sure some of our members already have pointed this out to ATOS and the DWP.
    http://www.dwpexamination.org

    Comment by dwpexamination — April 27, 2013 @ 11:14 am

  62. Help please.
    I have a home medical this Friday coming , any does or don’ts .
    I have chronic rumertiodarthritis most of the vertebra are fused , and my neck is totally locked , and I have no kog wheel at all ( I.E . Can’t twist left or right , cant bend or lift , i am in continent for both due to nerve damage , i have to have gents nappy on all the time , my hands are so painful the are bound in special gloves all the time ,my wife has to help me wash and dress ,including help me on and off the loo and clean me after , and help me get out of bed , and i am waiting for a left hip replacement , and both knees have to be replaced after the hip is done ,
    I’m on max dose of Oramorph 10 mil every 4 hours , Tramadol, Gabapentine , Amatriptolyn.
    For the rumertiodarthritis I have intravenous infusions ever two months , my god they make me so ill for five or six days , then I’m out of my head for six weeks , that’s on top of what the other drugs do, vomit , pee blood , confusion all the time , zombi fied , swolen liver and kidney problems.
    I’m under 3 consultant , a pain consultant , a spinal injuries specialist , and consultant rumertologist , physio every week , one week physio one week hydro., I get radio frequency Denovation on a six month recurring Opp at the same time I get 7 botox in the muscle groups.
    The Spine guy gives me block facet joint injections in my spine on a regular basic with steroid injections , and as I say rumertologist see’s me every two months.
    Rumertiodarthritis is a progressive disease and can only get worse.
    P.S. I still do the twelve stairs to get to bed , it takes twenty minutes or so , it’s while some health care people are still working out how to get me a stair lift fitted.
    Virtually any thing this ATOS doctor is going to ask me to do is going to give me grief.
    Can any one advise me how to proceed with this medical.
    Regards Bri.
    P.S. thanks to my lad for typing this for me

    Comment by Brian Aylott — May 4, 2013 @ 5:45 pm

  63. P.S.
    I can only walk about ten paces without sticks before pain takes over , with sticks a few paces more
    Brian.

    Comment by Brian Aylott — May 4, 2013 @ 6:15 pm

  64. P.P.S.
    It’s a home visit.
    Bri.

    Comment by Brian Aylott — May 4, 2013 @ 6:36 pm

  65. Please note.
    I have been advised that pain is no excuse as it is in the mind.
    Which makes me wonder.
    Is Agoraphobia, claustrophobia or any other “phobia” or mental illness no longer cause for a benefit claim or do they just pick and choose as they feel fit?

    Comment by Peter Barczak — May 4, 2013 @ 10:41 pm

  66. Hello Brian.

    With the health conditions you have described I don’t think you need to worry about what the ATOS HCP writes on the ESA85 assessment report.
    If he/she tells lies then you will appeal and have a laugh and win, if he/she tells the truth then you get ESA. Personally I think you have enough problems without adding extreme anxiety to them, especially when there is absolutely nothing you can do to change what will be will be..!!

    Ne vous inquiétez pas au sujet de quelque chose que vous ne pouvez pas contrôler…………As they say in France.

    Comment by dwpexamination — May 5, 2013 @ 1:17 pm

  67. I’m dreading my assessment from IB to ESA. I have had depression since 16 (I’m now 41) I have worked on and off but not for years. Last year I jumped in the thames breaking my ankle and was sectioned for a day but I’m too ill to attend appointments for my cpn so get no help from mental health services. I dread when the process starts as I fear the outcome so much. The process has not started and I lay awake at night fearful.

    Comment by Justme — May 12, 2013 @ 4:32 pm

  68. Hello justme.

    I used to worry about it all too around four years ago, one day I woke up and thought to myself that all this worrying is making me even more ill, I came to the conclusion that “Que Sera, Sera (Whatever Will Be, Will Be)” was the way to go..!!
    And I’ve never looked back.

    Comment by dwpexamination — May 12, 2013 @ 6:36 pm

  69. Hi dwp, thanks for your positive words, it’s really hard when you have chronic anxiety to reign it in, I just worry I won’t get the support from a g.p I don’t really know (the previous one I was with for 10 yrs was wonderful but I moved away) Anyway I know what you say makes sense and will take it on board. many thanks.

    Comment by Justme — May 12, 2013 @ 7:10 pm

  70. Hi,
    Due to my disability ATOS won’t let me in to their assessment centres and are insisting I have a home visit. Only problem is that it’s taking forever – 17 months and 8 failed (cancelled or the doctor simply didn’t turn up) appointments. I’ve complained to all and sundry and hope the next scheduled appointment in 2 weeks might actually happen, but I’m not holding my breath.
    Apart from the complaint that’s with the Ombudsman, is there anything more I can do? It’s totally unfair that because I’m disabled I’ve repeatedly had to change hospital appointments, ask family to take time off work and even once cancelled a holiday only to have mine and my family’s time wasted over and over again. Also, since my ESA50 form is now completely out of date, I’ve had to repeatedly obtain up to date medical evidence and my GP is now so sick of writing letters that they’ve refused to do any more unless I pay £100 a time, which I can’t blame them for.
    The Equality Advisory Service said I probably have a claim under the Equalities Act, but where would you start? I have neither the legal knowledge nor the stamina for court claims and I can’t afford a solicitor.

    Comment by AHJ — July 12, 2013 @ 3:34 pm

  71. Hello AHJ.

    Besides the inconvenience of cancelled hospital appointments why on earth do you want ATOS to hurry up and assess you ?.
    They are only going to find you fit for work no doubt anyway, so why speed up the process ? the longer you stay on ESA the better.
    So I can’t understand your logic.
    To make a claim under the Equalities act takes money, and like myself you haven’t got any, well not enough to frighten ATOS, because if I did have money and plenty of it, ATOS would be finished and you and I wouldn’t have this problem..!!

    Comment by dwpexamination — July 13, 2013 @ 12:52 am

  72. Inconvenience comes nowhere near describing what I go through each time yet another appointment fails – the best I’ve had is 36 hours notice, most of the time it’s cancelled on the day at best. Every time we gear up for this damn assessment I spend days in advance worrying about it and then days afterward fuming that it’s still not over. They have already accepted that I’m not fit for work the assessment is just to see if I’m in the support group – I meet the criteria for 3.
    It’s not about how long I stay on ESA – I’m actually on IB and have been for a long time and I know I’m better off not transferring until I have to. It’s about what is fair and reasonable and what I’ve been put through isn’t. However your reply leads me to believe you’re only interested in complaining and not in trying to do anything constructive to change things. One successful claim under the Equalities Act is all it would take to force DWP/ATOS to make all their assessment centres properly accessible so no one had to go through this again. There’s an FOI request kicking about somewhere that shows you’re something like 8 times more likely to have a home assessment cancelled.
    I shall seek advice elsewhere.

    Comment by AHJ — July 13, 2013 @ 4:18 pm

  73. Well AHJ, you’ve just appeared out of nowhere, I’ve never heard of you before and I’ve been doing this for over four years.
    And the reason for just appearing out of nowhere is simple, your only on here looking for advice because it’s all just starting to affect you.
    I’ve met your type before, you thought the welfare reforms wouldn’t affect you, you thought you were on IB support group for life didn’t you ? but now your finding out that is not the case, it’s affecting us all as I have never stopped telling everyone – for as I said – the last four years.
    And I’m willing to bet you were told repeatedly, but you wouldn’t listen because the truth is your an I’m all right Jack aren’t you ?.
    Yes…thought so.
    Your looking for advice ? yea sure you are, and we would never hear from you again, me myself and I, that’s you.
    So away you go my friend and don’t bother me again.

    Comment by dwpexamination — July 14, 2013 @ 12:13 am

  74. I’ve been trying to get a home visit since April, and I posted a comment on this on 18th April.
    After months of rearranged assessments at a centre, they got sick of rearranging, and told me they’d have to send out a form if I didn’t attend the assessment. This form had to be back the same day I actually managed to get my GP’s report (for which we paid £20), and the ATOS guy on the phone said to send it back with the form. My partner actually took the form IN to a JCP office and posted it through their INTERNAL mail.
    They’ve written to me today to say I never replied, so they’re kicking me off ESA. The first person we spoke to at DWP got snotty and hung up on us! Surprisingly enough, the second person couldn’t find out who we’d be speaking to, so we can’t put in a complaint. The second guy tried to help, but can’t. They’ve lost it, and it seems there’s nothing we can do but appeal.
    So ATOS refuse to give me a home visit without a medical report, DWP lose the report I had to pay to have written, and now I’m going to have to pay again for a report to try to appeal their decision >:( What’s the betting they lose another one??

    Comment by Emily — July 24, 2013 @ 1:04 pm

  75. Emily…Don’t give these incompetent idiots originals, always copies. They lose everything, some say deliberately and some say they are in chaos and don’t know what they are doing.

    So write the DWP a letter and explain exactly what happened, make a complaint that losing your vital documents is unacceptable and you shouldn’t be held responsible and therefore your ESA should be reinstated.

    I can give you one tip that helps get to them without visiting the wrong department and hoping they pass letters and documents on for you.
    Try and get the original DWP addressed envelope and stick it in that, that will give you the best chance of arriving at the correct destination.
    Sometimes JCP plus hand a couple over the counter if you tell them you are sending the DWP a letter, it all depends on the person at the other end of the counter, Ive been refused envelopes and I’ve been handed a couple, as I said it depends who is attending to you.

    Comment by dwpexamination — July 25, 2013 @ 7:22 am

  76. Hello everyone,
    I have my assessment coming soon and was thinking of refusing to enter into contract with ATOS by boycotting the questionnaire……obviously benefits will be pulled when they inform DWP ,however I was wondering if I would still be legally allowed to appeal?
    Regards

    Comment by Dean — July 31, 2013 @ 10:28 am

  77. Hello Dean.

    Yes your right, if you refuse to fill in the questionnaire your benefits will stop, the reason will be non compliance with their wishes.
    You can appeal, the DWP will refuse the appeal and if you make it to the appeal service they will be interested in one thing and one thing only.
    Did you or did you not present yourself at an examination centre or at least make an attempt to attend an examination centre to be assessed on your fitness for work.
    So I suggest to be successful you better have a good reason why you didn’t or couldn’t.

    Comment by dwpexamination — July 31, 2013 @ 8:17 pm

  78. Hi again,
    Thanks for your reply ,
    So how about i fill in the questionnaire and sign the box “under duress” instead of my name.?…..try to attend the interrogation (if my pain will let me that particular day) ,exercise my right to have it recorded ….when in the room do not give ATOS my consent for it to proceed on the grounds that I don’t feel that they are qualified to make any accurate assessment and that I am under no obligation to divulge any of my personal or medical information to a private profit making company and leave?
    I would have filled in the form and also attended and have proof etc…..Is this a better approach to begin with?
    I had a rare disease that has left me with spinal cord cns damage ……everything exacerbates my pain and constant leg and foot spasms ,from fluctuations in temperature to using my upper body which is ok.
    Shoes are also to painful to wear and cloths burn.
    The condition does not appear on the ATOS list ( 1 in a million chance of getting it) where they feel someone with a brain might be needed to asses…..
    Whoever you get to interrogate the questions,process and outcome will be the same….am I right ?
    Good luck to everyone with this Nazi final solution ….
    Cheers
    Dean

    Comment by Dean — August 1, 2013 @ 11:43 pm

  79. Hello Dean.

    No matter what you do – refusing to comply, or denouncing them unfit for purpose. or announcing they are not qualified, or leaving the building etc etc – if you do not do as they wish your benefits will stop, I need to make you aware of that, and try to make you understand that the whole system is skewered against you and in their favour.

    It’s true though, ATOS have to get your consent in order for them to physically examine you, but they don’t and never will use or mention the word consent, and you don’t need to answer ‘Yes I give my consent’ they will say instead something like ”I’m just going to examine you Sir, is that OK ?” that question as you can see can be interpreted in a couple of ways and gives them an escape route in case you say NO I do not want you to examine me or you are not qualified or I do not give my consent, if you reply with anything like that the assessment will stop immediately and the DWP will be informed by computer (That you refused to comply with their wishes) probably – within five minutes of you leaving the building – that you refused to be assessed.

    But you could say ”You can examine me if you like, I am not refusing to be examined in order to be assessed on my entitlement to benefits, but if you hurt me whist you carry out the physical examination then you will accept responsibility of course ?”

    I think you will find they will refuse to give you a physical examination, just in case they do harm you and you decide to take umbrage and sue them (For all they know you might have wealthy relatives…wink wink), and of course if you have already insisted on a recorded assessment then they will real back even quicker as if you had some kind of bubonic plague.

    Your benefits may still be affected, hoping you are scared off by their threatening letters – after all don’t you realise these assholes at the DWP and ATOS are big important men ? – but I can tell you that the very first thing an appeal panel will ask themselves is this ”Did you or did you not present yourself at an ATOS examination centre to be assessed on your entitlement to state benefits” the answer is clearly yes, because you were there and did not refuse to be there, and did not refuse to be examined either.

    If the ATOS HCP refuses to examine you because he/she didn’t want to accept responsibility in case they totally cripple you or make your illness even worse then that’s not your fault is it ?.

    Let me know what you finally decide to do Dean ?.

    Comment by dwpexamination — August 2, 2013 @ 8:45 am

  80. Hiya ,
    Thanks again for replying,thanks for the advice also ……I am in no way going to be intimidated by these Nazi Zombies,…..I would rather die on my feet then live on my knees.
    I am waiting for the questionnaire to come so it will be a while before I have to attend anything but I plan to be as awkward as I can and answer no to all questions………what you suggest about a physical examination sounds better.
    I understand that it will probably all be futile and the game is loaded in their favour…….I have also been F%$£ed over by the NHS so doubt I will get any help from them.
    To be honest mate I think the time has come to make a stand………once you have nothing,you have nothing to loose so they better watch out!
    I will keep you and readers informed …
    power to the people
    peace
    Dean.

    Comment by Dean — August 2, 2013 @ 1:28 pm

  81. Hello Dean.

    It’s not really all futile, because the more people who stand up to them the more it makes their job extremely uncomfortable.
    ATOS HCPs do not like going into work in the morning, they hate every single second they are there.
    They are just doing it for monetary reasons and nothing else, no job satisfaction whatsoever, and as you know that means their whole day and every day thereafter will drag in.
    They also know their days are numbered, they can be ousted anytime, in the future any CVs saying ”Worked for ATOS” written on it will be extremely hazardous to their job prospects in this country, a curse to carry with them for the rest of their lives, just like an SS/Gestapo blood group tattood under the arm.

    They might be laughing now, but we’ll have the last laugh, and when the time comes – and it will – we should show no mercy, no hand shaking and all is forgotten, no exchanging of civilities, they can all eff off..!!

    Comment by dwpexamination — August 2, 2013 @ 4:21 pm

  82. Hi again,
    check this link out……workhouses for the disabled coming?

    http://johnnyvoid.wordpress.com/2013/07/31/report-calls-for-expansion-of-residential-workfare-for-unemployed-and-disabled-people/#comments

    I wouldnt be surprised if they try this.

    Dean

    Comment by Dean — August 2, 2013 @ 5:18 pm

  83. Hi there, My mum has a home visit this week and we are both dreading it. I am claiming ESA, after a recent appeal win, and she was granted it with the support group a few years back (this is the ‘reassessment’ thing).
    We’ve never had a home visit before, but we were granted one because of her disability and anxiety (goes out to the GP or hospital only). I will be there as will my boyfriend who is the one who cleans/shops for us. I know how ATOS works, and I know that they fail pretty much everyone. The assessors pull you into a false sense of security, but then lie and fail you. Don’t think it isn’t the assessors who fail you, past ATOS nurses have revealed that they are the ones who say if you’re in or you’re out.
    I am under no belief that they will pass my mum even though she has been dubbed as ‘never capable of work’ by the Tribunal judge/doctor and her hospital specialists. I just want some advice as to what to do/how to act for the visit. We are thinking of recording it as well.

    Many thanks in advance.

    Comment by EvieHoward — August 13, 2013 @ 1:31 am

  84. Hello Evie.

    Did you ask for the assessment to be recorded ? that would have helped, if not then record it yourself, a mobile phone ?, do not let the assessor know you are recording it though, because the assessment will stop and the assessor will leave and inform the DWP that you did not comply with his/her wishes.

    Make sure your mother does not answer the door because that will be noted and entered into one of their little tick boxes as able to walk unaccompanied and without supervision et al.

    Under no circumstances does she go up stairs (If it apples to her), if the toilet is up there and she is asked how she gets there then state that she needs help to get up the stairs, of course that means either you or someone else has to be there 24/7.

    Sometimes – but rarely – these assessors ask to use the toilet, and once in there they prowl around looking at any boxes or the labels on any prescription type drugs, so that’s something to get sorted just in case, some have been known to prowl around upstairs bedrooms.

    She will be asked a bunch of questions, some of them stupid sounding, usually rapidly, so answer them slowly, just take your time in answering anything they ask, because some of these questions are repeated in a different way to try and catch you out.

    Do not hold back on information through pride, or trying to be macho, or giving them the impression she can cope because it feels uncomfortable talking face to face to a stranger, remember you will never ever see this person again, so adopt the attitude that you don’t give a rats ass what they think, for instance one claimant e-mailed me and let me know she was far too embarrassed to tell the assessor that she loses control of her bowels occasionally.
    And another told me that he was extremely embarrassed mentioning he needed help from others just to leave the house because he couldn’t visit a strange place on his own, both of these claimants lost their ESA and had a difficult job later on explaining why their extreme health conditions weren’t mentioned by them at the time when they were assessed.
    Don’t be like that, just tell them everything that is relevant to why she cannot cope with life and or work, or hospital visits etc.

    Comment by dwpexamination — August 13, 2013 @ 7:03 am

  85. Thanks for the advice. We live in a flat so there are no stairs. She actually can’t walk at the moment so she couldn’t answer the door even if she wanted to XD We know not to leave anything out, that was what we failed to do with her first assessment in 2010. All her tablets are next to her bed so even if he enooped he’s only find a toothbrush and shampoo etc :) All of which are adapted for her use :)

    So hopefully we get an OK assessor but anyone who comes into the flat and sees my mum would see that she is clearly unable to work. But then again, to them she’s only a number and their commission. Will update after the visit!

    Comment by EvieHoward — August 13, 2013 @ 1:58 pm

  86. I too have a dla assessment soon,I have hemicrania continua, bilateral small vessel disease and cerebrovascular disease with old cerebellar stroke.My headache hasn’t left me in 11 months and has ruined my life. This is the 3rd time I’ve applied for dla and also turned down at an appeal because I am worse now than when I first claimed absolutely dreading the assessor coming to my home.:(

    Comment by John Chilton — August 14, 2013 @ 8:03 am

  87. Me again, back to update for anyone interested…

    I wrote in an appeal and included a GP’s letter saying I need a home visit, after they refused me one, lost my paperwork, and then booted me off ESA… They wrote to me to say it wouldn’t be going to appeal, as the decision maker had changed his mind.

    My benefits have been reinstated, but we’re back to the beginning again, fighting for a home visit. I’ve been sent another appointment date at an assessment centre, and my partner called the ATOS appointments line today to ask (again!) for a home visit, and said we had the GP’s letter, and that DWP also have it… AND ATOS NOW SAY DWP HAVE TO REQUEST A HOME VISIT!!!

    What is going on with this place?! They can’t make their minds up how they work! Partner spoke to DWP, and they have said they’ll send someone from the job centre to our home to see if I need a home visit. So we paid £20 to get this doctor’s report for no reason >:(

    Comment by Emily — August 27, 2013 @ 5:07 pm

  88. HI there, just an update. My mum had her home visit a few weeks back. The assessor was VERY sympathetic and didn’t even go onto the physical side of her disabilities as he deemed her unfit from just the mental.
    We are so happy that we were able to find probably the only sympathetic ATOS assessor. My mum is on the support group still and we are all relieved that it went this well! Of course we waited until there was written confirmation as we all know how the DWP and ATOS just change their minds. But everything was OK.

    Thanks for the advice and support everyone.

    Comment by EvieHoward — August 27, 2013 @ 7:24 pm

  89. Emily.

    There’s no rhyme or reason with the DWP, they’re all running around every day like headless chickens.

    Every single day they go into work they all have to reinvent the wheel, and to make things worse your average DWP worker (Especially the ones on the phone) couldn’t pour piss out of a boot with the instructions written on the heel.

    Comment by dwpexamination — August 28, 2013 @ 12:12 am

  90. Hi Evie.

    Great news, a year ago she would have had to appeal against an unfair fit for work decision or being placed in the WRAG, times are changing.
    ATOS are being hammered from all sides now, even the Government are trying to put the blame on them, even though it’s the Government who gave ATOS the go ahead to commit criminal acts.

    That’s why we can’t just rest on our laurels, we must keep up the pressure until the Government are forced to see sense and get rid of ATOS, that will not happen if we fall for the old chestnut ”The assesssor was sympathetic” or we must have got the only sympathetic ATOS assessor, because there is no such a thing, the reason she is in the support group is because the assessor was ordered to put her there because of the constant pressure to reverse and get the figures back up.

    And not put here there because the assessor was a nice person, it’s impossible to work for ATOS and be a nice person, I wish people would understand this.

    Comment by dwpexamination — August 29, 2013 @ 7:46 am

  91. I disagree with you. I have been dealing with ATOS for years and have never met one who actually had a sympathetic look in their eye. This assessor had so much pity in his eyes that we all knew he was going to pass us. This is the problem with ATOS, everyone hates them, but everyone judged ALL their workers straight off. I would work for ATOS if it gave me a good pay… I have no objections in saying that. Working for ATOS is probably like being the janitors of the medical profession, people do it because they are not skilled enough for higher jobs, or they are desperate for the pay. DO not blame all the assessors for what is normally the managements fault.
    A year ago she WAS classed as fit so we went to appeal. She has NEVER been considered for WRAG, even ATOS said that if she got it she would be in Support group (and this is from 6 years ago). I am on WRAG because I can work in the future, there is no doubt about that. My Mum will never work, and even the meanest ATOS employee saw that. They can understand you will never work, but at the end of the day, if they haven’t met their ‘fail quota’, the weakest are the first to fall.
    I realise how Stalinist the ATOS system is, trust me, but it’s like blaming all politicians for the downfall of the UK. You can’t just blame everyone because you do not like the system they work in. I want them gone as much as the next person, but please do not insinuate that I am gullible because I said one assessor was nice. I have met A LOT of assessors who did not have any medical background, our assessor was fully qualified and knew enough about mental health that made me confident that maybe they are starting to change as a company because of the pressure and hate.

    I had my assessment not even a year ago, yet I was failed. If they are changing it then I wouldn’t have had to go to Tribunal with it. I have had friends who had assessments in the past 6 months who have been failed too, some bedridden (they went to their visit in a wheelchair after not being allowed a home visit). It is because my Mum had a home visit that she got her benefits. It’s only when they see you in your home and realise the extent of your disabilities that they are more likely to pass you. If you arrive to the health assessment centre the you are deemed fine instantly. It’s just how they work.

    Sorry for the long reply, but please understand that you cannot blame all the workers for what the management put into place.

    Comment by EvieHoward — August 29, 2013 @ 8:38 am

  92. I used to hate ATOS untill I met Dr Peter McDaid, who ignored my girlfriend’s pleas for treatment and let her die of Cancer, in my arms a month ago.
    Compared to him?
    I love ATOS like my own mother!

    Comment by Peter Barczak — August 29, 2013 @ 11:35 am

  93. Hello Evie.

    Remember the smash advert back in the seventies ? you know ? (If not ask your mum) when the little robots heard something that was so naive and incredible that they fell around the place laughing their heads off ?.

    I’m just getting up of the floor.

    Well I disagree with you, and I will not be making any apologies to you or anyone else…read my lips….ATOS are corrupt, they are corrupt from the bottom all the way to the top. there’s no exceptions, you work for ATOS you know the score.

    Let me explain it this way, don’t blame the guards at Auschwitz, they were just doing their jobs, some of them were actually quite nice fellows really.

    I’m trying not to offend you, but you seem like a nice person, I admire that, but ATOS are not nice people, ATOS piss on nice people, but if it wasn’t for this site and our sister site http://www.dwpexamination.org the only two sites in the whole of Britain that actually tells it like it is…with no bullshit.
    Then you would be in a camp similar to Auschwitz, scratching your head and wondering how you ended up there.

    By the way…please don’t come on here spouting nonsense like that again, you’re frightening people.

    (PS) Here’s the advert

    Comment by dwpexamination — August 29, 2013 @ 6:58 pm

  94. Unfortunately there’s plenty of Dr McDaids working for ATOS Peter.

    Sorry to hear that about your girlfriend.

    Comment by dwpexamination — August 29, 2013 @ 7:00 pm

  95. Aye thank you but McDaid was her GP !

    Comment by Peter Barczak — August 29, 2013 @ 7:14 pm

  96. My GP worked for ATOS…just my luck..!!

    Comment by dwpexamination — August 29, 2013 @ 8:56 pm

  97. You’re double fecked m8!

    Comment by Peter Barczak — August 29, 2013 @ 9:06 pm

  98. Hi Evie.

    I had to delete your comment, I can’t allow free disinformation on behalf of ATOS, I also will not accept a torrent of abuse because I didn’t agree with you.
    Please understand that I’m not a Doctor, just an ordinary Joe trying to help people battling ATOS and the DWP, so don’t come on here ranting and raving, set up your own Blog and you can do as you please.
    This is not a free platform for abusing people, if you have a problem get your anger issues seen to by a professional.

    Good day.

    Comment by dwpexamination — August 31, 2013 @ 3:20 pm

  99. Does anyone know if atos doctors get paid for failed visits.

    Comment by lee — September 7, 2013 @ 11:47 am

  100. Hello Lee.

    ATOS HCPs have a set target/s every day, so many claimants have to be failed by hook or by crook, this means some claimants will get lucky, but the majority don’t.
    So as long as the HCP meets their targets and that means meets their performance level then they will not be penalised.

    Comment by dwpexamination — September 7, 2013 @ 2:27 pm

  101. Thanks for reply to comment about failed visits. .reason I ask is the dr did not come on the day given..but suggests that he came day before and day after. So wondered if he got paid for those other two which was not officially set by atos..my partner is taking action and the above question was wondered in meeting with dla appeals solicitor we are using.

    Atos are not under same rules for freedom of information act like government would be. Which means they would not say themselves. So finding out on social media sites.. :)

    Comment by lee — September 7, 2013 @ 5:25 pm

  102. Hello Lee.

    Just to let you know, ATOS never ever use the word ‘TARGETS’ they may say performance levels, or some other ambiguous phrase instead.

    ATOS and their partners in crime at the DWP are past masters of double talk, mumbo jumbo followed by jumbo mumbo, all designed to confuse and mislead the public.

    Comment by dwpexamination — September 8, 2013 @ 1:11 pm

  103. hi My friend is filing out the form for me ESA50 and here is a lis of my problems that is wrong with me

    1 Dislocation of the left peratle Knee I have a full leg claiper that will not bend
    2 7 Severd Vertebra and 2 Traped nerves
    3 Frozen shoulder (tendonitis shoulder) Right Hand side
    4 Osteoporosis Spine Left Knee
    5 Arthritis Left Knee Both hands And In my Fingers have hand suport left right
    6 Thyroid (underactive)
    7 Hip Problems Left because of the weight of the claiper is so dam Heavy
    8 No feeling on left hand side after a stroke
    9 No sense of smell after fall down my stairs
    10 Def in left ear
    11 Depression
    12 Asmatic
    13 Migraine Stroke Suffers with migraines on a weekly Basis
    14 Slow Heart Beat
    15 Bowel Problem When I do go I stay there for a long time and feel Drained of energy
    16 Tummy Bug
    17 Tinnitus
    18 Low Blood count
    when the form gets back to the I have a lot of information to put on so my friend is typing it all out for me I am going to give them all the Information that is wrong with me so far this year I have had 54 hospital appointments and just come out of pot left and right hand from falling this year so far 4 pot left hand 2 right hand so trying to fill the form is a nightmare

    samantha

    Comment by Samantha O'Brien — September 14, 2013 @ 10:28 pm

  104. Hello Samantha.

    As well as listing all your health problems, make sure you explain why your health issues prevent you from working.
    Check out the descriptors, how far can you walk ? how long can you sit at a work station for ? and so on.
    Remember if the DWP force you to appeal, then everything you write on the ESA50 will be read by the appeal panel in the future.
    You will find a list of the descriptors here at our sister site http://www.dwpxamination.org

    Comment by dwpexamination — September 15, 2013 @ 6:16 am

  105. ATOS FAVORS disabled person BUT DWP ignores REPORT
    I have several disabilities; Asthma, Ulcerative Colitis, Dyslexia, Arthritis in right Ankle, Knee and Hip, Degenerative right Ankle and Knee, and Depression.
    I applied for Disability Living Allowance over a year ago and was refused. I appealed and was refused. I then appealed to the Tribunals Service.
    Three months ago I had my first tribunal hearing. They suspended the hearing because they requested for me to have a home visit by a ATOS medical Doctor to write a report. Due to my medical evidence contradicted their opinions. That happened.
    I finally got a copy of the ATOS medical report two months later and after several requests for it.
    I also got a Directions Notice by a Tribunal Judge, that ignores the ATOS medical report and instead requested for me to send further Medical information from either GP or Specialists, although they already have all that information.
    After reading this Directions Notice, together with Citizen Advice and wondering why Tribunal Judge would say that. We read the ATOS medical report, and we think this is why.
    Within the ATOS medical is very accurate, IN FACT IT’S FAIR, HONEST REPORT, completed by a registered Doctor who they approved.
    He agrees with all my disabilities, for instance, he states a walking distance before needing to stop/halt of 2-3 meters and likely distance before onset of severe discomfort <30 meters. He also states I need help through the day and night, i.e. for toilet, bath, shower needs, for cooking, for taking my medication, for avoiding common dangers. He states ‘He is in obvious pain’ several times throughout the report. He states a substantial impairment in my right hand, foot, ankle, lower leg, knee thigh and hip.
    I have been told by benefit advisers that based on the ATOS medical, the Tribunals Service requested through the DWP from ATOS, I would be entitled to Higher Rate Care and Motability.
    But Tribunals Service/DWP are ignoring the ATOS medical report.
    If you run this story, for once ATOS has got it RIGHT and that we want to shout about that. After all the bad press about them, it’s time to show who really make the decisions!
    IS the problem with the DWP and tribunals service?
    Do they rule on favoured ATOS reports and ignore those favoured to the disabled person?
    We would also let you see the signed ATOS medical report and allow for you to seek independent benefit advice on what level of DLA should be applied.
    Because this case is being appealed. I would like my identity to remain anonymous but willing to talk on TV/Newspaper and show the medical report. Several are already interested.
    Thank you
    James

    Comment by James — October 19, 2013 @ 11:22 am

  106. Hello James.

    ATOS really make the decisions based on their report to the DWP, most decision makers comply and accept because they feel they can’t argue seeing as they are pen pushers with no medical experience, so they rubber stamp the ATOS decision rightly or wrongly.

    But sometimes in the ranks of the DWP decision makers crazed narcissists lurk, who feel unimportant, who feel their job is beneath them, and can’t bear the thought of being a nobody, hence the reason for over ruling the ATOS report, an attempt to make her/himself feel important.
    So that’s all it is, and you will win the appeal.

    Let’s get it right…ATOS decide who does or does not get benefits, the decision makers are nothing of the sort, they are lowly pen pushers, and do what they’re told or else.

    At the moment ATOS are getting a real bad press, because they are finding it difficult to blame the DWP, SO THEY ARE ALLOWING MORE AND MORE PEOPLE TO PASS THE TEST, It’s plain and simple, and there’s no other reason.

    ATOS are on their last legs, they are hanging on with dear life, and they know it..!!.

    Comment by dwpexamination — October 19, 2013 @ 2:20 pm

  107. I used to work for the DWP in one of their contact centres. And have also worked at a Job Centre itself. I was only a pleb in both those jobs. The fault isn’t in the front line staff but from Government decisions which are passed down to them to implement. The contact centre staff have to follow a mandatory text from the computer which they are not allowed to deviate from. Calls are monitored continually and anyone not obeying the rules is disiplined and could be sacked.. Workers are scared for their jobs and have to do exactly as they are told. The same with Job Centre staff. It’s not the front line staff who make the decision to sanction claims or refuse them. They are just ordinary people trying to do a difficult job. I have found most of them are well aware of lack of jobs, stupid decisions and harsh regime but they are not allowed to say so. They have no power. Customers would occasionally have a go at me saying the rules were wrong and unfair. I agreed with them but wasn’t allowed to say so. All I could say calmly was I could only explain the rules I couldn’t change them. I should imagine the same at ATOS. If the lower workers didn’t obey orders they would be sacked. I was sacked from my job and nearly 4 years later I am still out of work. And getting lots of hassle from the Job Centre. It’s the Government and ATOS management who are to blame.

    Comment by BAM — November 30, 2013 @ 4:35 pm

  108. Well Bam…maybe they – like you – should speak out anonymously to newspapers and forums and their own members of parliament and highlight what is going on, instead of just following orders and turning a blind eye like brainwashed sheep.

    Only following orders is no excuse, go with the craws then you get shot with the craws (Old Scottish saying).

    Evil thrives where good men stand by and do nothing..!!

    Comment by dwpexamination — December 1, 2013 @ 3:04 pm

  109. I have a doctor coming from Atos next week. My problems are more mental. I’m physically well. If I get taken off my benefits and put onto JSA I know I won’t be able to cope. I don’t like life anyway so if it gets worse I have a plan to end it using drugs like Ambien etc.

    Comment by anonymous — January 28, 2014 @ 5:47 pm

  110. Hi Anonymous.

    I hope your not going to do anything daft like that, and can I suggest you get some help from your mental health Doctor.
    All this ATOS nonsense is just a con, a ruse to force us to appeal to get ESA, and that’s what we should all do…STAND UP TO THEM AND APPEAL.

    Comment by dwpexamination — January 28, 2014 @ 8:04 pm

  111. I know someone who has said that if ATOS sign them off, they will set out on a “voyage” of destruction and every time they go out, they will damage something belonging to the “community”.
    Library, public loos, etc.
    They know this will not help him but he said he will feel “better”, knowing he was “Got his own back”.

    THIS is what ATOS is doing to some people!

    Comment by Peter — January 29, 2014 @ 12:05 am

  112. That’s the same mentality as these folk who go around destroying public phone boxes, then when they need to phone for the police or an ambulance they can’t, because the idiot destroyed the local phone box…Duuuuh.
    Absolutely pointless, but if they destroyed the loo at the local ATOS centre (And I’m not advocating that) then I would at least see a point.
    Better to fight them and win their appeal and help us expose ATOS and the DWP management, pressure from us all in getting rid of ATOS and those £500 DWP bonus monsters is the best revenge.

    Comment by dwpexamination — January 29, 2014 @ 9:34 am

  113. Don’t worry.
    I think he’s all mouth and trousers.
    I’m just adding to the thread, showing how ATOS is affecting people.

    Comment by Peter — January 30, 2014 @ 7:39 pm

  114. are your sister sites now unavailable?

    Comment by Anonymous — February 9, 2014 @ 1:43 am

  115. Had a server problem last week, it’s back on track now.
    http://www.dwpexamination.org

    Comment by dwpexamination — February 10, 2014 @ 12:09 am

  116. Don’t worry Boney.
    I saw it as spam too.
    Now, if the second word is “off” what is the first?

    Comment by Peter — February 11, 2014 @ 12:55 am


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