A CANCER-SUFFERER from Coalisland has said he is ‘disgusted’ after he was ordered to undergo a series of ‘fit-to-work’ medical tests.
Plunkett Scullion has been told he has to attend an Employment Support Allowance review meeting even though he is currently undergoing treatment for bowel cancer.
Plunkett was diagnosed with the disease in May, and underwent major surgery eight weeks ago to tackle the disease. However, he has been told he will need further treatment.
Plunkett branded the medical test as ‘a sick joke’.
“Dealing with the effects of cancer and recovering after major surgery are difficult enough, without having to go through the stress of doing these medical tests.
“They will medically examine my fitness, even though it is very clear that I am not able to work. My GP believes that I am unfit for work and has said this, but the benefits agency aren’t satisfied. I watched my sister die of cancer at the age of 26, and my mother also passed away with the disease.”
The government is seeking to reassess all 2.6 million people on incapacity benefit - and its successor employment support allowance (ESA) - by 2014 in an effort to encourage more people back to work and to cut the welfare bill.
It is estimated that the total welfare bill for the Dungannon District will be reduced by £23m.