Your comments: 2 May 2018

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Love the CSP’s latest campaign

I was really excited to read about the CSP’s Love activity, hate exercise? campaign. I often speak at local groups where I joke about exercise being a swear word and focus them more on thinking about building activity into their day, moment by moment. When cleaning their teeth, they can fit in heal and toe raises or do squats while they are on the phone. I set up an exercise class for the community, which always concludes with a snippet about how members can keep more active in small ways every day. 
When making individual exercise plans for people, I ask about the rhythm of their day and tailor my plans around what they usually do at a certain time. They might do a ‘sink exercise’ when they wash their hands, or an ‘adverts activity’ between TV programmes, for example. I use posture checks to encourage people to think about how they carry themselves every day in every way, whatever they are doing. It’s great for public engagement and makes people think differently. Your campaign will be a great resource for members to present such a message in an accessible way so that we can help those who have the most to gain make small, manageable steps towards much healthier lifestyles. 
  • Judith Hayhow, Deal, Kent 

Getting the PIP

I am a retired  physiotherapist who has recently been through the Personal Independence Payment (PIP) process as a patient. I applied for PIP in January 2017, and had a face-to-face assessment in July with an assessor, who was a physiotherapist working for Capita. My application was turned down with ‘nil points’ in August. I appealed twice and was rejected. I then went to the magistrates’ court, where my appeal was unanimously and swiftly upheld and I was awarded my rightful PIP allowance, backdated to January 2017. This has been a distressing experience and, apart from raising my concerns about the robustness and fairness of the process from the patient’s viewpoint, it has concerned me greatly from a professional one. 
As a result of my experience, I feel strongly that physiotherapists in this field should be reminded that they have a duty of care to advocate for patients. As such, they should discharge their assessment roles within the PIP process appropriately, rather than acquiescing to a standardised, limited ‘one size fits all’ script with inappropriate assessments,  as demanded by the Department for Work and Pensions. 
I would be interested to hear comments from colleagues on their experiences of this issue, either as a patient or assessor. 

Tell us a story

Your readers will have many memories of patients they have treated. Some will be humorous, others sad. Others may contain a moral or have a learning point. I believe your readers’ memories and reminiscences will interest others. With that in mind, I started a blog where memories or anecdotes can be recorded as short stories and shared. See To get in touch, simply use the ‘contact me’ tab on the website.
  • Peter Sykes, retired surgeon
Frontline and various

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