A disabled women says she was left to sit in her own urine for nearly two hours after her plight was ignored by a healthcare professional carrying out a disability benefit assessment.
Maria Lane has spoken up about the “devastating” experience she endured during her personal independence payment (PIP) assessment, in the hope that other disabled people will not have to go through similar experiences.
She told – and showed – the assessor just 10 minutes into the assessment that she had had an accident and had emptied her bladder into her incontinence pad, and that urine was leaking into her trousers.
But she said the female assessor – who works for the government contractor Atos – “looked for a second at the pad” and then continued typing.
Atos has now launched an investigation.
For nearly two hours, she was forced to continue answering questions, with the assessor warning her whenever she failed to do so that if she did not respond she would have to return for another assessment.
Maria Lane has a number of long-term health conditions, including diabetes, osteoarthritis – which affects all of her joints and has spread into her spine – sciatica, a slipped disc, high blood pressure, and depression.
She is waiting for a major operation on her bladder, because of severe incontinence which means she has to wear pads permanently.