Charlotte Ormrod has a deformed hip and double curvature scoliosis – so relies heavily on a wheelchair – and has been admitted to hospital 12 times in the last year
A mum whose young daughter has a twisted spine and only one fully functioning lung claims her girl has had her benefits stopped because she ‘has some mobility and goes to a mainstream school ‘.
Charlotte Ormrod, 11, has double curvature scoliosis, which means she struggles to walk and relies heavily on a wheelchair.
She also has a deformed hip and ends up in hospital regularly due to a weak immune system.
Since her diagnosis last year, Charlotte has been admitted to hospital 12 times due to problems with her lungs, her mum says.
But following a reassessment by the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP), Charlotte has been told she’s no longer entitled to Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for her personal care, Chronicle Live reports.
Julie Ormrod and her daughter Charlotte, 11 (Image: Newcastle Chronicle)
Julie, 44, claims one of the reasons it is stopping the benefit is because the youngster attends Albany Primary School, a mainstream school in Washington, Tyne and Wear.
Julie said: “I’m absolutely disgusted.
“She is entitled to that money. I’d maybe understand if it was an adult but she is just a child going through this.
“They said she was not entitled because she has some mobility and goes to a mainstream school.
“There was nothing wrong with my daughter when she was born.
“Why should she not be allowed to go to a mainstream school because she’s in a wheelchair?”
Due to her condition, Charlotte does not take part in PE and her family home has been modified so she can live there.
Charlotte does not take part in PE (Image: Newcastle Chronicle)
“She’s been in hospital 12 times in the last year and can’t do what normal children do,” Julie said.
“She has respiratory problems and requires surgery on her lungs, and has just had another stint in hospital after her lungs collapsed.
“No-one has been out to see her – they have just made an assumption.”
In a letter seen by ChronicleLive, it says Charlotte does not qualify for DLA for personal care because she does not meet the criteria.
The criteria includes needing help with personal care for about an hour right through the day and at night repeated or prolonged attention to prevent a danger to yourself.
Julie says she has been caring for Charlotte around the clock since her diagnosis, but claims she has been told she’ll need to go back to work full-time.
But Julie said it would be unrealistic as she needs to be there to take Charlotte to hospital appointments, care for her at home and the youngster often falls ill.
Julie takes Charlotte to hospital appointments (Image: Newcastle Chronicle)
She said: “I have been receiving carer’s allowance and income support.
“But they have said that I need to sign on for Job Seeker’s Allowance.
“I don’t know what I’m expected to do.
“I have to take Charlotte to hospital appointments, such as to the lung consultant.
“I don’t know how they expect me to find an employer who is willing to let me off work if I need to go for Charlotte or take her anywhere.
“She doesn’t have a very good immune system, so if she gets even a sniffle she’s in hospital.”
A DWP spokesperson said: “We’re absolutely committed to ensuring that people with disabilities and health conditions get the full support they need, and spend over £50bn a year doing so.
“Decisions on DLA for children are made following consideration of all the information provided by the family, their GP or medical specialist.
“Anyone who disagrees with a decision can appeal, and any further evidence will be taken into account.”