Diabetes below the knee amputation & Personal Independence Payments

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Hi all, I'm asking on behalf of my mother (she's not great with technology!)

My mother has had type 1 diabetes for 45 years, and as a result has ended up having a below the knee amputation in the middle of last year. She has since applied for PIP with a view to getting the enhanced rate for motobility to allow herself to be independent again. She has missed the enhanced rate for both daily living activities and mobility activites by one and two points respectively.

We have since appealed, and whilst in our tribunal argued that whilst she can walk up to 50 metres with her prosthesis, she cannot do this on any uneven ground safely (for example, the bus stop is 500m away, and the curbs are uneven enough that she cannot walk there). We have also argued that she cannot reasonably get up and move within a "normal" time zone. It takes her 2 or 3 times the amount of time it would take myself or my partner to do the same trips. I understand that within the law, the safety and reasonable time period is supposedly considered, however when I brought this up at the appeal, our judge told me they don't consider these points and that it wasn't her fault we lived a 5 minute (30 minutes for my mother - if she can even make it at all) walk from the bus stop. 

Her diabetic consultant has been with her since the discovery of her diabetes, and included a medical assessment saying that whilst she can with an extreme amount of effort and unreasonable amount of time move the distances asked, she is not happy for my mother to do this since it lowers her blood sugar levels and can make her hyperglycaemic. 

Does anybody else have any experience with amputee PIP claims? I understand that my mother is still semi-mobile, but the effort it requires to do every day tasks, I feel she should be receiving more help than she is. It feels like she is being penalised for trying to do things on her own. The idea of PIP is to make the claimant independant is it not?

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4 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi Danielle, I don't have experience specifically with this. However, I suspect that it's a matter of jumping through the right legal hoops, getting proper documentation, etc. certainly, it sounds like the bus stop is too far for her to manage, as if she can only go 50 meters, and it's 500, that is way beyond her ability, and then she still must navigate herself onto the bus and be able to get around. Seems obvious to me.

    However, dealing with legal issues, you have to exaggerate the problem in order to get some sort of recognition of the reality of the situation.  I'd have your doctor document that she's really only able to get around in a controlled environment (home) due to poor health that limits her stamina. So she's basically housebound, unless she's having an exceptional day.  Of course, you probably want to leave off the exceptional day part and just talk about her abilities on the really bad days, which we all know are more than we want to admit.

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  • Posted

    Hi to Danielle Starr,

    I do agree that the lady in question should be given P.i.P. on her Medical Grounds she is intitled to recive PiP on her Condition rather than how far she can walk.

    Please Reasses her Condition and Stop Penalizing People her Medical need should be taken into consideration at all times.

    Yours Sincerly

    IreneMatthews.

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  • Posted

    Many appreciation as she has lived with diabetes for 45 yeras, salutes.

    can i know from which age she is diabetic and as a type 1 has this been transfered to the childrens.

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  • Posted

    Hi Danielle Starr,

    Firstly it's a pain filling in these forms but unfortunately you have to keep appealing.

    I know someone who had been trying to claim PIP for over a year as their illness wasn't seen as being debilitating, he had 2 medical school the first one being done by a none medical assesser the second by a medical assessor who he was sure was watching him walking into the building.

    but I digress, go to citizens advice and ask them to help to fill in the forms, even better if you know someone who knows some of the jargon used by the appeal process this can often help.

    Whatever you do don't give up, my friend got their PIP in the end with the help of friends, he even got back pay to his original claim, so their is light at the end of the tunnel, even though it must be heartbreaking for you to see your mum struggle.

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