Cyprus man missing a leg asked to prove disability


A man who is seeking government subsidies to buy a handicap accessible vehicle has been called to an interview to prove to a medical council he is with disability due to missing a leg.

According to daily Phileleftheros, a person with an amputated leg filed in late November a request for financial assistance in the amount of 3,500 euros in order to buy a handicap-accessible car, but the review of the case has been delayed.

The Department for Social Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities notified the man earlier this week that he will need to show up in person, so that members of the medical council can evaluate his situation.

But the man says he shouldn’t have to show up in person to prove his disability, citing the fact that he has been issued a European Disability Card.

On November 21, he submitted an application for both a European Disability Card as well as the 3,500 euro state subsidy for the car. While the card was approved, on the basis that he already owned a handicap accessible vehicle.

According to law, persons with disabilities aged between 18 and 70 are eligible to receive state subsidies in order to buy a handicap-accessible vehicle, with the amount ranging between 3,500 euros and 4,500 euros depending on whether the person uses a wheelchair up to 9,000 euros in the case of a quadriplegic when wheelchair-accessible van is necessary.

The department says it is not common practice to reevaluate cases where people have already been evaluated and a certificate of disability is in the records.

According to DSIPD’s website, a new system for assessing disability and functioning in the Republic of Cyprus aims to establish a scientific, reliable and credible data basis for the assessment of disability and functioning, commonly accepted and used by state services. The goal is to cut red tape and help persons with disabilities to access their rights without multiple bureaucratic procedures.

Christina Flourentzou, the director at the DSIPD, did not rule out that the interview with the medical council could have been scheduled in error, but she stopped short of giving details in the specific case, citing privacy concerns.

The interview has been set for Monday. [Kathimerini Cyprus]