Monthly Archives: July 2019

A nurse failed to mention a disabled womans near

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first_imgA nurse failed to mention a disabled woman’s near-fatal asthma attacks, accidental overdoses and repeated blackouts, in one of the clearest examples yet of a dishonest benefits assessment report, secret recordings have revealed.A video recording of the assessment also shows that the nurse lied about the way disabled activist Catherine Scarlett made her way from a stairlift to a reclining chair to begin the assessment.Scarlett had been so distrustful of the personal independence payment (PIP) system that she made both video and audio recordings of her face-to-face assessment, which was carried out at her home in Yorkshire in May.She says the recordings and assessment report prove she was right to do so.They show how the nurse – employed by the government contractor Atos Healthcare – repeatedly downplayed the seriousness of what she was told by Scarlett.This allowed the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to lower her entitlement from the enhanced rate to just the standard rate for the daily living element of PIP, although she was allowed to stay on the enhanced rate for mobility.At one point, Scarlett is heard on the recording telling the nurse that on several occasions she had accidentally double-dosed the powerful opioid pain medication Tramadol, but the nurse translates that in her written report as “occasionally forgets to take her medication”.Scarlett also tells the nurse that she cannot read for long periods “because I black out”, but this ends up in the report as “she can read although she doesn’t read for long due to concentration”.When Scarlett describes how she has previously experienced “near-fatal asthma attacks”, the nurse writes this up in her report as episodes of being “wheezy and short of breath”, which “comes and goes”.And when the nurse asks her if she has ever thought of taking her own life, Scarlett tells her that she has felt like ending her life “lots of times” and that she experiences “impulsive urges to commit suicide and things like that”.This is translated as “she has had thoughts of not wanting to be here”.Scarlett is also furious that the nurse suggested that she did not need to carry out a physical examination if that meant she would be “wiped out for the week”.When Scarlett agreed and said she was “not really” keen on having the examination, the nurse was able to use her decision to decline the physical tests to justify relying instead on an inaccurate description of how she claimed she saw Scarlett “grip and operate a crutch in each hand” as she was walking from a chairlift to her seat, in order to play down her need for support for bathing and dressing.DWP later admitted – when it eventually overturned its original findings – that she lacked the necessary grip and strength in her right hand and arm “to be able to dress yourself reliably and in a timely manner”.The video clearly shows Scarlett walking with a stooped posture, leaning heavily on the crutches, and flopping into the chair, but not touching its arms.But the nurse writes this up as: “She walked from the bottom of the stairs to her specialist reclining chair using a crutch in each hand. She walked very slowly with normal posture.“She lowered herself into the chair by putting her hands on the chair and lowered herself into it.”Scarlett believes that her case, and many others she has been passed by other disabled people through social media, show that DWP is “colluding” with Atos in order to cut people’s support.She said: “I have been shocked at the effect on my mental health and the thoughts it has brought up for me and can understand why it pushes so many people completely over the edge.“I’m lucky to have strong family, friends and professional support that keeps me going but so many people aren’t as lucky and so are very vulnerable to devastating mental health deterioration and the consequences of that.“The whole system needs fully investigating and changing to protect those people.”Following the decision to reduce her support, a mandatory reconsideration (MR) – DWP’s own internal review process – endorsed that decision, although the department finally agreed last month to return her daily living to the enhanced rate when she appealed against the MR decision.In that decision, DWP accepted that Scarlett did after all need help to dress and take a bath.For technical reasons, DNS was not able to share the video recording with Atos and DWP, but the audio recording was shared with their press offices.DNS originally agreed to omit the allegations connected with the video recording so that DWP would comment on the evidence provided solely by the audio recording.But this morning, after agreeing to this and asking for extra time to produce a response – the audio recording was originally sent to DWP and Atos on Tuesday afternoon – a DWP spokeswoman failed to comment on any of the evidence contained in the audio recording.Instead, she merely pointed out that Scarlett’s PIP entitlement was eventually restored, after she appealed, to the daily living enhanced rate.She also repeated previous DWP statements about the “strict quality standards” required of assessment providers, and the “on-going quality audits” that assessors are subjected to, as well as mentioning the complaints procedures available to PIP claimants.An Atos spokesman refused to comment on the evidence at all.He said: “We’re informed we won’t have access to the video which accompanies the audio without which the points raised cannot be looked into as verification is simply not possible.”Scarlett’s case is one of 22 that have been passed to Labour MP Neil Coyle (see separate story), who has pledged to take up concerns about allegations of dishonest assessment reports when parliament returns from its summer recess next month.Disability News Service (DNS) has been investigating since last November claims that healthcare professionals working for Atos and Capita have been lying in their assessment reports.DNS has now compiled more than 200 cases in which PIP claimants say their assessors produced dishonest reports.The investigation shows that assessors – most of them nurses – have repeatedly lied, ignored written evidence and dishonestly reported the results of physical examinations.But DWP, Capita and Atos have all refused to launch inquiries into the claims of widespread dishonesty.Picture: Scarlett flops into her seat at the start of the assessment, watched by her husbandlast_img read more

SUPER League is delighted to announce that it has

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first_imgSUPER League is delighted to announce that it has agreed a new five-year contract with Sky Sports that will have a transformational impact on Rugby League as the sport enters an exciting new era.The new contract comes into place from 2017 and will extend Rugby League’s hugely successful partnership with Sky Sports into a fourth decade.As part of the deal, Sky Sports will provide enhanced coverage of the whole sport, including the resumption of live Championship action from 2015 when Rugby League embraces the exciting new league structures that see two divisions of 12 teams split into three groups of eight in the closing stages of the season.Super League and RFL Chief Executive Nigel Wood said: “I am delighted that we have been able to agree a new contract with Sky Sports that will extend our hugely successful partnership until the end of the 2021 season.“The association with Sky Sports has enabled Rugby League to realise many of its ambitions over the last two decades and this new contract will allow the whole sport to grow still further as we enter an exciting chapter in our history.“Throughout our negotiations it was clear that Sky were genuinely excited by the league structures that we are putting in place from 2015 onwards.“Whilst the new contract does not come into effect until 2017, it allows for the return of live Championship action to Sky Sports from next year which will complement their first class coverage of the First Utility Super League and capture the thrills and drama of new-look competitions where every match matters.“Following on from the success of Rugby League World Cup 2013, the forging of significant commercial partnerships around the First Utility Super League and the decision by the clubs to embrace the new league structures, this is another momentous day for the sport.“This really is a fantastic time to be a Rugby League supporter.”Sky Sports Managing Director Barney Francis said: “This new deal is great news for Sky Sports and our customers, who will enjoy at least eight more years of live Rugby League and an exciting new structure for the sport in the UK.“This new deal will take Sky’s partnership with the RFL to 30 years, 26 of those between Sky Sports and Super League. Now, at the dawn of an exciting new era for Rugby League, we’re thrilled that the premier competition in the UK will continue to be available only on Sky Sports until at least 2021.“We are also pleased to be bringing even more live coverage, with over 80 matches in 2014 and over 100 a season from 2015 onwards.”As well as a new contract from 2017 to 2021, the RFL has agreed a number of changes to the current deal with Sky Sports that runs to the end of the 2016 season. These include regular live action from the Kingstone Press Championship in 2015 and additional coverage of Catalan Dragons home games from 2014.last_img read more

Birżebbuġa murder What do we know up to now

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first_img SharePrint <a href=’;cb={random}’ target=’_blank’><img src=’;cb={random}&amp;n=ab2c8853&amp;ct0={clickurl_enc}’ border=’0′ alt=” /></a> Local news reports are treating the murder on Sunday as a drive-by shooting. This means that the perpetrator passed by using a car when they shot on the victims.READ: Updated: Man murdered and two injured in BirżebbuġaThe Malta Independent said that the shots were shot from the passenger’s side of the car. According to the Times of Malta, the police are still searching for the perpetrator and the car that was being driven, which is allegedly a white Toyota Scarlet.The case occurred on Saturday night, at around 11pm in Triq tal-Ġebel in Birżebbuġa. The road leads to Ħal Far, and is known for frequently being used by immigrants who are going to Ħal Far open centre.Those involved:The victim: Lassibe Souleymane, who was 42 years old from Ivory Coast. According to The Malta Independent and Orrizont, he was killed by a shot to his head.A 22-year-old man who lives in Ħal Far, is suffering from serious injuries. The Malta Independent stated that the man is from Ghana.A 45-year-old man who was originally said to be from Georgia. However the police stated that his identity is not yet confirmed.Both the Times of Malta and The Malta Independent said that one of the two surviving victims underwent an operation in the lower part of his body yesterday. TVM said that both men were shot during the incident.The Malta Independent reported that the police went on site following a phone call from a person saying shots could be heard in their area. Some reports also said that one of the victims called the police. The police saw the two bodies on the ground and an ambulance was called immediately. Afterwards, they also sighted the other body, but he was certified dead on the spot.Orrizont says that there is no connection between the victims besides the fact that they were walking down the same road. According to in-Nazzjon, the Police suspects that one of the concerned persons is related to a different criminal group organisation. The Times of Malta reported that this could have been a racial incident, such as an immigrant who was run over in alleged by a hit and run incident.The Police is investigating footage from security cameras around the area. A magisterial inquiry led by Magistrate Rachel Montebello was initiated.This was the third murder in 2019, since a few weeks ago; Joseph Bonnici allegedly killed his mother Marija Lourdes Bonnici, and his sister Angele Bonnici in a bloody murder.WhatsApplast_img read more