Home Society Woman has disability benefits axed for having life-saving open-heart surgery

Woman has disability benefits axed for having life-saving open-heart surgery

Lyn had her disability benefits axed for missing an appointment, after collapsing at home following life-saving open-heart surgery.

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A seriously ill woman has had her disability benefits axed for missing an interview, despite being in hospital after undergoing life-saving open-heart surgery, it has been reported.

Lyn Wright, from Colwyn Bay in Wales, says she’s been left feeling suicidal after callous contractors Capita stopped her Personal Independence Payment of almost £140 a week.

Lyn was forced to rearrange one appointment after the date for open-heart surgery was brought forward.

The Daily Post reports that her mother Margaret Unsworth informed Capita that her daughter Lynn had been rushed into hospital after collapsing at home following surgery, but Lynn was later informed that her benefits had been stopped for “refusal” to attend a third appointment.


The 48-year-old has been left so distressed by the ordeal that she is now on anti-depressants and has considered taking her own life.

Speaking to the Daily Post, Lyn said: “I never refused the appointments. I was in hospital in May having a mechanical valve put in my main aorta in my heart and I told them about it.

“I have been suffering for years and I finally found I had two valves missing from my main aorta. I was born with it apparently.

“Then I was rushed back into Ysbyty Gwynedd on June 20 after I collapsed and I got a letter while I was there asking to meet me at home for assessment on June 22.”

She added: “My mother called Capita on June 21 and told them the situation and asked if they could do the interview while I was in hospital but they said they couldn’t and it would be classed as my third ‘refusal’ and passed back to the DWP.”

So worried about losing her disability benefits, Lyn even tried to discharge herself from hospital. But caring doctors managed to convince her to stay and called in a clinical psychologist due the immense stress she was under.

A week after leaving hospital, Lynn offered to send the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) evidence which would show she was in hospital at the time of the appointment but was told it wasn’t necessary.

Due to the shocking decision, Lynn has now been forced to turn away a carer and cleaner who were helping her at home whilst she was recovering from surgery.

Lyn said: “I’ve lost £139.75 a week and had to stop my carers and my cleaner who helped me while I was recovering. I don’t want to run up bills… because I’ve worked all my life.

She added: “I had a good enough reason. I tried everything to offer to send them the proof I was going in hospital. Then I get the letter saying I didn’t provide a good enough reason and my benefit is stopped.

“It’s the injustice of it that eats you up. If having open heart surgery isn’t a good enough reason for not attending an interview what can you do?

“I asked them to come and see me in hospital and they wouldn’t. I did everything I could.”

A DWP spokesperson said a decision to stop PIP is “based on the information provided by the claimant and their GP”.

They added: “We expect the highest standards from the contractors who carry out assessments on our behalf.”

A Capita spokesperson said the decision had been taken “in line with the agreed operating guidelines”, which requires them to forward cases to the DWP “where people are unable to attend two PIP assessments”.

The spokesperson added that Capita “are working with the DWP to investigate this case”.


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8 COMMENTS

  1. Here in the USA my neighbor had to endure stress tests and failed while she was determined NOT to be disabled. She went for triple heart bypass a week later…but yet she was refused disability as they told her she attended a vocational school and learned accounting some 30 years ago and could work in an office!!!

  2. It is outrageous that, when I post this on my Facebook profile, only one friend – if that – will acknowledge it.

  3. There should be national enquiries about every single sanction that involves vulnerable people. Enough is enough. Far too many people have died DIRECTLY BECAUSE of the sanctions policy. If the amount of people who have died [ which is in their thousands] was replicated against those who are working, there would be a national outcry. Furthermore. why do the Tories inisist on using the word, ‘Welfare’ to describe those who are out of work? The money that the vast majority of people get who are on benefits, is actually THEIR OWN MONEY THAT THEY HAVE ALREADY PAID IN WHEN THEY WERE WORKING!

    So, the money they claim back is merely the money that they paid in, in case of any future unemployment or sickness. The word, ‘Welfare’ is an American name and should not be used here, in the UK. I will continue to those benefits, SOCIAL SECURITY, NOT WELFARE!

    So, with that being the case, why are the Tories hell bent on trying to stop the vast majority of people from claiming the money that they have paid in, their SOCIAL SECURITY [ WHICH IS THEIR OWN MONEY?!}

    The reason the Tories changed the wording from ‘Social Security’ to ‘Welfare’ is a vindictive one. It was done in a way so that others who are working, could see those who are not, as some kind of ‘scrounger’ or ‘layabout’.

    That is exactly the reason for the subtle word change. What those who are working seem to forget though, is when they themselves come to claim back the money that THEY HAVE ALREADY PAID IN WHEN WORKING FOR ANY FUTURE SICKNESS OR UNEMPLOYMENT, they will find that they cannot. Because the Tories will have them jumping through impossible hoops just to claim their own money back. This is not taxpayers money…THIS IS YOUR MONEY, YOUR SOCIAL SECURITY THAT THE TORIES DEEMED FIT TO NOW CALL WELFARE!

    • Yes. I would also be fine with people talking about National Insurance payouts, to remind people that it works just like with car and houses – you pay in when you’re able to work and if at any point you become unable to, the insurance pays out.

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