Personal Independence Payments will gradually replace Disability Living Allowance from April 2013, one of the aims being to save 20% of the overall bill.
An initial shortlist, or framework, has been set of 10 potential bidders for the contract to deliver medical services for the DWP, including independent assessments for Personal Independence Payments.
The bidders list includes- Avanta Enterprises, Ingeus Deloitte Limited, APM UK Ltd, Capita Group Plc, G4S Integrated Services (UK) Ltd, Atos Origin, Vertex Ltd, MAXIMUS Employment UK, Reed In Partnership and a voluntary sector company. A4e were not short listed.
Atos have received criticism from claimants for the manner in which the medical assessments for the Work Capability Assessments(WCAs) for ESA have been carried out. Professor Harrington’s 2nd report on the WCA found-
‘… that the WCA is not working as well as it should. There are clear and consistent criticisms of the whole system and much negativity surrounding the process. There is strong evidence that the system can be impersonal and mechanistic, that the process lacks transparency and that a lack of communica-tion between the various parties involved contributes to poor decision making and a higher rate of appeals.`

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