A SERIOUSLY ill man has hit out at benefits bosses after he was denied disability payments - despite being unable to feed or dress himself.

John Docherty - who suffers from sciatica and severe nerve damage - was shocked when the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) told him he was not eligible for Personal Independence Payments (PIP), a form of financial support available to people with severe disabilities.

The grandfather, from Greenock, says his conditions prevent him from completing simple tasks like opening a jar or putting on his clothes.

But a DWP assessment - seen by our sister title The Greenock Telegraph - said that Mr Docherty should not be awarded the assistance payments as they believe his mobility is adequate.

While the report into Mr Docherty's condition admitted that the 50-year-old needed aid to prepare simple meals and wash, his claim for support payments was still refused.

Glasgow Times:

Mr Docherty told the Greenock Telegraph that the decision has been 'devastating'.

He said: "I'm in agony on a daily basis and can't walk more than a few metres without losing my balance

"People have had to carry me home before as I've fallen over in the street or have taken a seizure.

"I've provided the assessors with photos of all the injuries I've suffered from falling over. There were everything from cuts and grazes to broken bones and black eyes.

"I don't know what's going to happen next, I wouldn't wish this struggle on anyone.

"It difficult to go down stairs, my hands don't work properly so I struggle to grip things and the pain in my legs just leaving me unable to get about.

"I worked hard when I was younger and I never took time off when I was struggling. Now I wish I had looked after my health because it's not done me any good. I've worked myself into the ground in the long run.

"I can't get into a lot of the rooms in my house and I struggle to cook for myself, I basically live off of takeaways because I can't open jars or lids. I've no grip at all.

"There are obstacles in my life every day which to other people would be simple things, but my mobility is completely shot.

"Being told I can't get any support because I'm apparently able to move myself about is a complete slap in the face."

Mr Docherty says that rising living costs have put extra strain on him financially - and that not refused PIP has put him in an even more difficult position.

When contacted about Mr Docherty's situation, a DWP spokesperson chose not to comment on his specific circumstances.

They said: “Personal Independence Payment (PIP) assessments are carried out by healthcare professionals trained to consider the impact of someone’s health condition or disability and they focus on an individual’s functional needs arising from their long-term health condition or disability, not the health condition or disability itself.

“Our priority is that the millions of people we support every year get the benefits to which they are entitled and to ensure they receive a supportive and compassionate service.”