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Cancer-Stricken 61-YO Grandma Dies Malnourished, Weighing Just 42 Lbs After Government Denied Disability Benefits

Cancer-Stricken 61-YO Grandma Dies Malnourished, Weighing Just 42 Lbs After Government Denied Disability Benefits

Christine McCluskey was found to be 80% disabled. She even suffered from cancer along with other illnessess.

As citizens, who pay taxes, we believe the authorities should take care of us. But many a time, these institutions fail us. One pensioner from the UK became the victim of the government's negligence. She struggled to feed herself due to the lack of benefits and suffered from various health problems. 

According to the Daily Mail, 61-year-old grandmother, Christine McCluskey from Dundee, Scotland suffering from lung cancer died weighing just 42 pounds after the government denied her disability benefits for four months. The helpless woman was confined to her bed and suffered from a variety of medical conditions.



 

 

In May 2018, when the assessment was done by the Department for Work and Pensions, the old woman had already had Crohn's disease, a stroke, arthritis, osteoporosis, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Despite all this, the government still went ahead and denied her access to her personal independence payments. They also removed her mobility care after receiving the assessment made by an independent agency.

However, she was still provided with the employment and support allowance. But her condition deteriorated considerably after being diagnosed with terminal lung cancer. With the DWP failing to reinstate her allowances, the woman was unable to support herself. 

"I can’t get my head around how someone could assess my mother as anything but very sick. You only had to look at her to see that. They said she could walk 200 meters based on her having hobbled from the sofa to the door to let them in," said her daughter, Michelle McCluskey, her daughter from Kirkcudbrightshire.



 

When she was assessed, McCluskey's health was so bad that her weight was only 75 lbs (5st 5lb). She was malnourished and was using a feeding tube, according to inews. And four months later, when she died, she weighed just 42 lbs (3st).

Soon after her death, her daughter filed a case against the actions of the governmental body. Upon revision, a judge reversed the decision and gave the past benefits to the daughter. But she stated it was a little too late. 

Much earlier, in 1986, McCluskey was found to be 80% disabled by a medical tribunal. Her health had just deteriorated over the years, especially after the stroke she suffered in 2005. Besides, the woman had been using a feeding tube for the last eight years of her life. Meanwhile, pained by the injustice, the daughter stated that the independent agency was to be blamed for what her mother underwent.



 

She said that the report produced by the agency called Independent Assessment Service (IAS) was "full of blatant lies." And accused the agency of not fully verifying the intensity of her mother's condition and stated that her mother could not get herself to the bath, contrary to the report. The report also claimed that the woman's scars were "not that bad" after examining just her legs when she had bandages on her stomach too. Michelle also pointed out that her mother was tired of fighting for her benefits and claimed that it contributed to the decline of her health.

Though her mother had passed away unable to access the support she deserved, Michelle is determined to fight the system that failed her. She is now gathering supporters for the Scrap 6 Months campaign started by Marie Curie and the Motor Neurone Disease Association. This campaign aims to make it easier for terminally ill people to get the support that they need for a better life instead of being pushed around through various levels.



 

McCluskey's story opens our eyes to the problems that prevail in our system. The effect it had on an aging, disabled woman who had to fight a broken system while suffering so many physical ailments until her last breath, is heartbreaking and cruel. 

References: 

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8552349/Grandmother-61-died-cancer-weighing-three-stone-DWP-stopped-117-85-week-benefits.html
https://inews.co.uk/news/dwp-benefits-stopped-grandmother-terminal-cancer-died-three-stone-558875