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To: Thérèse Coffey, Secretary of State for the Department for Work and Pensions

Stop sending misleading letters to GPs

Stop sending letters telling doctors to withhold sick notes from the ill and disabled people seeking Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)

Why is this important?

The department for work and pensions (DWP) are sending doctors misleading letters stating that their patients do not need a “fit note” anymore because they’ve been found fit for work. This letter will leave severely ill and disabled claimants unable to obtain Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) to which they are entitled pending appeal.

This threatens the doctor – patient relationship and puts patients at risk of damaging their health further and leaves them in serious financial difficulties.

Case Study

Like thousands of others, Louis* was too ill to work and needed the vital income ESA provides – but his claim was refused. Louis was blocked from claiming ESA as he awaited his hearing, due to a misleading letter sent from the DWP to his doctor without Louis’ knowledge. Louis had to rely on food-bank vouchers, went into debt, accrued rent arrears and faced an increased risk of eviction. It took moving GPs and relying on new evidence from a clinical psychologist stating how his mental health would deteriorate further if he did not obtain the fit note, and therefore the benefits he needed to survive.

Louis is not alone. These letters are sent to the GP of every person after they have been refused ESA - before they've finished the appeal process. 88% of our clients win their appeal and are entitled to ESA again.

It is not for the DWP to interfere with the GP and their patient. Sign the petition today.




2019-04-29 19:00:18 +0100

100,000 signatures reached

2019-04-12 10:02:42 +0100

85,000 signatures

2019-04-01 09:02:07 +0100

80,000 signatures reached

2019-03-20 19:32:01 +0000

50,000 signatures reached

2019-03-18 20:25:53 +0000

20,000 signatures reached

2019-03-18 18:37:00 +0000

10,000 signatures reached

2019-03-18 18:08:58 +0000

5,000 signatures reached

2019-03-18 16:07:29 +0000

1,000 signatures reached

2019-03-18 15:22:47 +0000

500 signatures reached

2019-03-18 14:19:30 +0000

100 signatures reached

2019-03-18 11:04:34 +0000

50 signatures reached

2019-03-18 09:53:58 +0000

25 signatures reached

2019-03-18 08:42:53 +0000

10 signatures reached