CBL - medical information in assessment of banding
08/10/2011 11:39 am
I've been on the waiting list for social housing in my local Borough since 1997. My current assessment puts me into C banding - identified need to move. I believe I should fall into B banding based on medical issues but I'm not sure how to present medical information to allocations to support this. What do they need to know to make an accurate re-assessment of housing need? I'd appreciate some feedback from the experts here and many thanks in advance!
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08/10/2011 1:52 pm
You will be able to get a form, from your LA fill it in with all the information you have on your medical conditions with the supporting papers and the names of the Doctors who can confirm the details. They may ask you to go for a medical of their own, just to confirm what you say is right, or you may get a visit from them, don,t worry they deal with this a lot.
08/10/2011 5:22 pm
Under what ground of "identified need to move" was your band C awarded, overcrowding or medical? If it was the latter then one would expect you have already had to submit such a form as Leslie suggests above, can you confirm this?
You need to be careful when playing the medical banding game. Some LA's/HA's have been known to keep your bedroom size entitlement the same in order to get you into accommodation that would accommodate (no pun intended) your medical condition.
I.E if you are currently overcrowded on a band C, but on a 5th floor block with no lift in a 1 bed, you submit forms for medical conditions you might find yourself awarded a band B but for ground floor 1 bed only. The logic behind this is to remove any H&S issues associated with you remaining in the 5th floor in the event of fire or incident.
The adage "remove you from the danager and sort out the overcrowding afterward" springs to mind.
08/10/2011 5:25 pm
Also for those that are crying out "thats illegal, they cant do that". Yes they can.
It only becomes a breach of the Housing Act 1985 if they transfer you into a smaller property then you are currently residing in. Transfering you into another 1 bed wouldnt be a breach of the above Act. If they transferred you into a studio then there would be cause for redress.
08/10/2011 5:33 pm
Sorry I've not been very specific but thank you both for your input thus far.
Housing Options team placed us in a 4 bed private rental 2 years ago due to basically zero social housing becoming available in the Borough. Just before we were housed we had priority homeless status (band B) and then obviously this fell away to band C once we were rehoused. I was warned this would happen but we were put under duress to take the (extortionate) private rental.
I'm heading towards the latter part (time wise) of a Section 21 notice currently as the Landlord wishes to return to the family home. I understand we won't move up from band C until an eviction order has been served but it was also suggested to me recently that my physical/mental health issues should be flagged up to help our case. I have no idea if this would help or not.
What I do know is that private rents here (Surrey) are some of the highest in the country and moving every 1-2 years is having a detrimental effect on my health but I can't make 3/4 bed social housing properties appear where there are virtually none. It's all so frustrating and soul destroying if I'm honest!
09/10/2011 9:12 am
I regret that having your soul destoryed wont get you band B, nor will the stress/strain of moving every 1-2 years. You'd be hard pressed to convince any GP worth their salt to upgrade your banding based on that.
Really the priority bands are reserved for those with a true medical need, what you've mentioned isnt one. The banding system works on how the current property or situation impacts your health every day, as you've stated its the moving every 1-2 years, could you give us a little more details on what alements befall you when you have to move, in order for us to let you know if you have a case or not?
09/10/2011 9:42 am
Absolutely Anon and I wasn't suggesting those particular points would help upgrade banding, merely just thinking outloud as it were with regards to the system but I also understand that system is under immense pressure with such massive waiting lists.
I have a GP letter of support here. My surgeon is also happy to provide supportive medical evidence as is my psychiatrist. Sadly I have several health probs that are more serious than anxiety over moving house. Bi-polar disorder/co-morbs, malabsorption syndrome (due to the removal of a portion of my intestine) which creates all manner of co-morbidities, osteoporosis and 2 ruptured spinal discs. Due to the complexity of these conditions I was just wondering about the best way to present this information in relation to housing assessment.
Thank you for your time in responding.
Apologies for not addressing an earlier point about my banding. I'm sorry to say that I don't really know which 'identified need to move' section of C banding I fall into. That has never been made clear to me. I should obviously look into this.
09/10/2011 10:59 am
I must say I wish all tenants had your outlook with regards to CBL, it is truely commendable given the illnesses/conditions you have stated.
As Leslie said get hold of another medical assessment form, get all of your GP's notes (they might charge for this) and send them all in. With my current employer we outsource medical self assessments to a third party to make the judgement if the situation warrants an upgrade in banding (i will add its a registered Doctor with GMC). It is likely they will wish to contact your GP/Surgeon etc, make sure you have the most up to date details for them on your latest form. But please bare in mind that your conditions will be judged on how they will impact your housing need, not on how severe they are.
Best of luck
18/10/2011 9:55 am
The Borough Council should have a system whereby a change of circumstances can be notified and assessed which may alter the current banding.
The first step is for the customer to approach the Borough Council who should be able to advise the customer of the next necessary steps.
28/11/2011 2:32 pm
The sad fact is that time on the waiting list is not usually a significant factor for waiting list priority.
Probably the most significant measure is some degree of 'medical priority. The idea is that the more debilitated you are, the
higher your priority for re housing, particularly if your medical condition, (and where you live), stop you, for example, from
getting around or about of your home. This could be inability to negotiate steps or stairs,for example. But just being poorly,
even very ill, is not in itself enough.Other factors also count, like overcrowding and disrepair, particularly where any
disrepair has a negative effect.
Your local authority should be able to tell you say what kind of information they require about your health.This is either
a letter from your GP or consultant, or a form signed by them. Landlords may assess this either themselves or refer this to
a medical advisor who will say what priority this gives you. The key point here is that the information you present should be
confirming how your medical condition is affected, or made worse, by the place where you currently live.