Dementia and wheelchair bound, but not sick enough for early retirement….

Dorte has dementia and is in a wheelchair:  but she’s not sick enough for early retirement 

Written by Ane Sørensen April 16, 2015

Picture: Mathias Svane Kraft/3F

Svendborg Municipality believes that Dorte Pedersen’s ability to work has not decreased enough.

59-year-old Dorte Pedersen has dementia, needs a wheelchair, and receives home-help several times a day.

Still, Svendborg Municipality thinks that Dorte is not sick enough to get disability benefits.

Dorte Pedersen has been in the workforce for more than 40 years. She has, among other jobs, worked in a bakery, at a large factory, and worked in a school. But it all came to an abrupt end in 2010, when Dorte had a stroke and was dismissed after a year’s absence. Dorte wanted to come back to work, but in 2014 she had to be on sick leave, and chronic neuritis (a chronic nerve infection) forced her to be in a wheelchair. Shortly after, Dorte received a dementia diagnosis.

But even though Dorte is sick, Svendborg Municipality doesn’t think she has the right to claim disability benefits and go on early retirement. The municipality estimates that Dorte’s ability to work has not decreased enough that she qualifies for early retirement.

Svendborg Municipality has not returned to 3F’s inquiries regarding Dortes case.