Today the Government announces the independent providers for the new assessment for the Personal Independence Payment (PIP).
The providers have been appointed on a regional basis to help ensure a quality service is delivered in a way that best meets local needs.
The PIP assessment competition has now been completed for Great Britain and the preferred bidders for each of the three Lots are:
- Lot 1 – Atos Healthcare
- Lot 2 – Capita Business Services Ltd
- Lot 3 – Atos Healthcare
The recommended supplier for Lot 4 is still to be confirmed through the NISSA approvals process and will be announced later.
PIP is part of the Government’s welfare reform agenda and will replace Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for people of working age (16 to 64) from 8 April 2013. The new benefit will better reflect today’s understanding of disability which has changed a lot in the two decades since DLA was introduced.
A core feature of PIP will be a new assessment of individual needs by a trained Health Professional.
These face-to-face assessments ensure that, unlike in DLA, disabled people will be able to have a detailed discussion about how their impairment affects their everyday lives – rather than having to self-assess themselves though a complicated claim form.
This means that decisions on benefit entitlement will be more accurate, objective and consistent than currently.
Both providers will be working to the same legislative framework, criteria and guidance and DWP will be closely monitoring and auditing assessments to ensure their quality and consistency
Further notes on commercial process
On April 30 the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) announced the ten organisations which had been awarded a place on the Framework to deliver Health and Disability assessments.
This Framework is made up of four regional lots: Lot 1 (Scotland, North East and North West England), Lot 2 (Wales and Central England), Lot 3 (London and Southern England) and Lot 4 (Northern Ireland); plus a national lot, Lot 5. Framework organisations are eligible to bid to deliver the DWP’s future requirements for Health and Disability assessments in the Lots for which they were successful.
On May 2 the DWP invited the organisations in Lots 1 to 4 to tender to deliver the Personal Independence Payment (PIP) Assessment service on behalf of DWP and the Northern Ireland Social Security Agency.
On 21 May a total of 19 bids were submitted from 6 organisations across the four Lots. All bids received were compliant. The formal evaluation of written tenders followed, considering the quality, risk and financial aspects of each bid.