Hospitalised heart attack victim told to attend work scheme – Liverpool Echo

Colin Rogers with wife Carol [Image: Liverpool Echo].

Colin Rogers with wife Carol [Image: Liverpool Echo].

DAYS after suffering a major heart attack and as he lay in a hospital bed wired to monitors facing a bypass operation, a Wirral dad was phoned and told he must continue a government work programme, writes Kirsty McHale in the Liverpool Echo.

Colin Rogers, 58, from Irby, had been admitted to Arrowe Park Hospital and then transferred to Broadgreen, in Liverpool, after suffering chest pains.

His wife, Carol, said she was later told he was moments from death as his heart failed and then specialists said he must undergo a quadruple heart bypass operation after he was taken ill on September 27.

Yet, days later – despite his wife informing the Job Centre of her husband’s condition and asking that this be passed on – as he lay in bed in hospital he received a call about his place on the Government’s Work Programme, delivered by public services company A4e.

Colin, who had worked for Champion Spark Plugs until the factory closed and he was made redundant, was told by a manager from A4e that he was committed to the work programme he had been signed up and would have to continue it.

Colin, who came out of hospital a few days ago, said: “I couldn’t believe that they were ringing me because I had given my wife a list of people who needed to be told and she had contacted the Job Centre and told them A4e needed to be informed what had happened to me. So I was completely shocked and I said to the guy I couldn’t believe he was phoning me, that he was supposed to have been told that I had a heart attack.

“This guy was persisting about wanting to discuss the next plan of action but I said I was ending the conversation and put the phone down.”

Colin said within minutes of this a nurse, who had noticed his heart monitor, came and asked if there was a problem, but Colin said: “I didn’t want to say anything because I was embarrassed I was being phoned up like that.”

He added: “But I was disgusted with what had happened. I want to work, but all I seem to be doing is fighting these people.”

A spokeswoman for DWP said correct procedures had been followed.

To read their incredible excuse, visit the Liverpool Echo website.

This is happening too often to be coincidental. Perhaps a Freedom of Information request, on the procedures staff are asked to follow, is in order.

Follow me on Twitter: @MidWalesMike

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  1. Lovejoy October 28, 2014 at 12:40 am - Reply

    Shocking and appalling.

  2. Samuel Miller (@Hephaestus7) October 28, 2014 at 4:06 am - Reply

    The sensational headline loses its impact once you’ve read the statement from the A4e spokeswoman. If she’s telling the truth, then I would regard the article as a non-story.

    • Mike Sivier October 28, 2014 at 10:41 am - Reply

      Considering A4e’s record, I’m far more inclined to believe the gentleman concerned: His family informed the Job Centre and asked for A4e to be told as well, and then the company called him up anyway. Take a look at A4e’s listing on Wikipedia.

  3. Mr.Angry October 28, 2014 at 4:58 am - Reply

    Words fail me ” We are all in this together” like hell we are. Back door genocide from an elite group.

  4. Michele Witchy Eve October 28, 2014 at 10:27 am - Reply

    Currently being on a work programme (Papworth Trust) my information from the JC+ is that you, the claimant, have to inform both parties separately. The JC+ will not give information to your work programme provider on your behalf but will only verify information (if asked by your wp provider) and vice versa – unless it’s a sanction of course.

  5. amnesiaclinic October 28, 2014 at 11:42 am - Reply

    So, don’t have a heart attack until you’ve made sure you’ve informed them both preferably in advance, of course. But to be in hospital and harassed just takes the biscuit.

    Are you able to do the FOI request on procedures, Mike? Sounds like a very good idea.

    • Mike Sivier October 28, 2014 at 12:58 pm - Reply

      I’m not sure – need to brush up on my FOI knowledge in that respect.

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